Earlier this year, Matt Shane recieved the 2011 Concordia University Award from Winsor, his work was also exhibited here at the gallery. Shane is currently enrolled in the MFA program at Concordia University in Montreal, specialising in painting and drawing. Shane has obtained a BFA from the University of Victoria and it was here where he began collaborating with Jim Holyoak.
These two artists have been very busy over the past three months. They were selected to participate in the 2011 Québec Triennale at the Museed’Art Contemporain de Montréal. The MACM commissioned a large-scale drawing installation titled Quagmire. For the entire three-month long show, Shane and Holyoak were drawing collaboratively on-site in a specially constructed room at the museum. They covered all the walks in paper and began drawing six days a week.
Quagmire, represents the swamp as a metaphorical site of disintegration and formlessness, but also of abundant life and regeneration. Shane and Holyoak's mire is home to mangrove roots, vines, mud, bulrushes and lilies, as well as entire cities growing on the skin of a dead sperm whale. Quagmire is a space of flux and metamorphosis, growth and decay. The artists also see the context of a quagmire as also referring to mother earth's precarious situation. It is an apt metaphor for the situation we find ourselves in as a species. The earth’s population is nearing 7 billion, we are hitting peak total oil, global temperatures are rising, polar ice caps are melting, and about 30,000 species per year go extinct, mostly due to human impact on the environment.
Enjoy the beautiful images of this collaboration: