The installation Dwell, by Carolyn Wren, consists of a wooden table, two chairs, and a linocut printed linen tablecloth. Culture implies a transformation of nature, and Dwell embodies an evolutionary imprint of nature to culture, to nature and back to culture. Because nature provides raw material for cultural products, flax is the inspiration for the linen tablecloth. Damask linens, first produced in 1600s, became a sign of wealth and culture in European and North American homes; now, in this tablecloth, fine lines flow like swirling currents cascading down the side of the table. The damask pattern progresses into a waterfall reflecting the natural environment; whirlpools twist and turn into a series of markings that transform into a map, a cultural interpretation of nature.
The play between public and private space is evident in the reference to domesticity. The viewer is invited into the space and the tablecloth takes the viewer outside of the space through its depiction of the landscape of Niagara Falls, which transmogrifies into a map of the same area.
Born in St. Catharines, Ontario, Carolyn Wren studied visual art at the University of Western Ontario. Wren has been exploring themes of lost knowledge and metanarratives in her recent work of transcribing iconic texts to create her installations. In the past she has used relief print methods and processes in non-traditional ways. Key exhibitions include: Rodman Hall Art Centre, Brock University (St Catharines, ON); Kelowna Art Gallery (Kelowna, BC); The University of Sherbrooke (Sherbrooke, QC); Cram International Gallery (St Catharines, ON); and Linen Biennale (Portneuf, QC). She has been exhibiting her work since 1990 in group and solo shows in public galleries and artist-run centres across Canada.
The exhibition is accompanied by a text Milijana Mladjan. Click the button below to download.