Artist: Mark Dudiak
Exhibition title: Parrot & Crow
Venue: Projet Pangée, Montreal, Canada
Date: August 24 – September 30, 2017
Photography: all images copyright and courtesy of the artist and Projet Pangée, Montreal
Montreal, August 16, 2017 — PROJET PANGÉE is pleased to present Parrot & Crow, the first solo exhibition of Mark Dudiak in Montreal.
Art can persist long after its maker has disappeared; it may be encountered by many generations over thousands of years. Thus art participates in a conversation concerned with time, and with change. If art encodes the terms and conditions present in the moment of its creation, whether they be social, political or emotional, then we are able to look backward through art-history to observe the cultural strata of the past. Thus we are able to intuit what may have mattered to our ancestors. In this way we might trace the origins of our own values and see how they have evolved or changed. This is one of art’s most important roles: laying down a mark, participating in an ancient and ongoing conversation that plays out through time. Dudiak’s work is concerned with this conversation. Through art he explores aspects of memory, absence, transcendence and beliefs within an urban contemporary, post-internet context.
Dudiak’s work is focused around two fields whose relationships to the past are explicit: memorial architecture and abstract painting. Both engage with notions of immateriality, in that they purport to imagine forms for the formless, to render the abstract in concrete, visible terms. He explores these efforts to embody or to house the unknowable as a means to re-approach the classic painterly opposition between figuration and abstraction.
Parrot and Crow is an installation of paintings and wall sculptures intended to be read together as a proposal for a single architectural space. Dudiak figures the exhibition space to suggest a sacred building – a temple, shrine, or mausoleum. Each canvas in the series represents a single one of the building’s boundaries – walls, ceiling, a floor seen in plan, windows and lights. Their scale and spatial orientation activate the architecture of the gallery. The works depict an imagined monument to a condition we can’t know, and thus become abstract as they engage with the idea of abstraction.
Mark Dudiak lives and works in Montreal. He holds a BFA from Emily Carr University (2003) and an MFA from Concordia University (2017). His recent solo exhibitions include Set On Stone at the Forest City Gallery (London, 2016) and Dead End at the Museum of Contemporary Canadian Art (Toronto, 2012). He has also presented his work across Canada, Germany and the United States in numerous group exhibitions such as Chromatic Revelry at Wil Aballe Art Projects (Vancouver, 2014), You had to go looking for it at Scotiabank Nuit Blanche (Toronto, 2011) and Pertinent Abstractions at Cydonia Gallery (Fort Worth, Texas, 2017).