SHELTER in PLACE
November 20, 2020 – March 6, 2021
An image list is available here.
The Toronto Star has reviewed Rochelle Rubinstein’s exhibition, you can read the article here.
The block printed banners in SHELTER in PLACE represent Rochelle Rubinstein’s desire to blend the design aesthetics and art of printmaking on textiles with social and environmental advocacy. When her Open Studio exhibition was postponed due to Covid-19, Rubinstein, using only materials that were already in her studio, reworked some of the banners with messages (such as Shelter in Place, Wash Your Hands, 2 Metres, Flatten the Climate Emergency Curve, Respect Your Mother) and new images (of viruses, red crosses, lungs).
These were layered over older Imagery of plants, hands, hearts, bees, terrorism, keening women, and water. Earlier narratives of nature’s intelligence and fragility, of greed, oppression, and unnatural disasters now blend with Covid-19 narratives and related issues of social upheaval, health systems, environmental destruction, and regenerative agriculture. Rubinstein created the banners on flag material with parades, protests, and rallies in mind. Weatherproof and versatile, even the largest banner can be folded into a small square, ready for use in unusual settings and situations. Several of the banners about water protection have been hoisted at urban and rural parades, at water celebration ceremonies, at protests in front of government buildings and in Ontario barns, as well as in museum exhibitions. The Covid-19 banners have been displayed in empty Toronto storefront windows.
Rochelle Rubinstein is a Toronto-based printmaker, painter, fabric and book artist.
Her work has been exhibited in diverse places such as the Irish Museum of Modern Art, Ireland; Yeshiva University Museum, New York; Print Triennial, Estonia; and McMaster Museum of Art, Royal Ontario Museum, and Chinese Cultural Centre, in Canada. For eighteen years, Rubinstein was a member of Loop Gallery, where she had regular solo exhibitions, and for seven years she curated monthly exhibitions at Mon Ton Window Gallery, in downtown Toronto.
Rubinstein’s work can be found in public collections such as the Museum of Modern Art, New York; the Irish Museum of Modern Art, Dublin; and the Victoria & Albert Museum, London.
She has completed several artist residencies, including Women’s Studio Workshop and Stern College for Women in New York; and the Irish Museum of Modern Art and Aras Eanna Art Centre in Ireland.
As a community arts facilitator, her workshops and projects involving health workers, abused women, people with eating disorders, seniors with depression, youth at risk, and Arab and Jewish artists, are based upon methods that are central to her own art practice: drawing, carving, printing, sewing, and bookmaking.
Rubinstein is also a steward of Bela Farm, in Hillsburgh, Ontario, where she is engaged in art, agriculture, and activism.