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Installation view at Pari Nadimi Gallery, October 2007

Clutter Sculptures

October 20–November 24, 2007

Opening Reception:
Saturday, October 20, 2007, 2–5pm


Pari Nadimi Gallery is pleased to present a solo exhibition of new sculpture by Vancouver-based artists Rhonda Weppler and Trevor Mahovsky.

Since 2004, Rhonda Weppler and Trevor Mahovsky have produced a body of work ranging from Thirty Foot Yawl (collapsible) — a fragile, hollow sailboat built of veneer — to foil casts of automobiles and intimately scaled sculptures of mundane objects such as coffee cups. They are interested in the way a culture of things flittingly attains meaning and cohesion, and their works are characterized by a shifting sense of material culture as substance, image and language.

Weppler and Mahovsky’s new plaster-slathered sculptures, elaborating the additive logic of their earlier stacks of small objects, depict stylized accumulations of clutter. The new works are expanded in scale: plaster bottles, cords, tires and other detritus are joined to form islands of objects evocative of alleyways, basements, garages and fields. Organic and textured, the sculptures are built up over time into carefully arranged imitations of randomness. Self-contained plaster depictions of piles and tangles lean and hang upon one another in larger jumbles, undermining gravity even as they are governed by it. These calcified still lifes are painted with bright enamel colours, a schematic surface treatment that further links and divides their constituent parts. The accumulative process that generates each sculpture is by turns literal, representational and syntactical.

These works continue the artists’ interest in the sculptural still life, a pointedly awkward transmutation of matter into matter for which sculpture takes the role of ‘thing but not a thing’. All of their works hold a frank sense of materiality in suspension with the iconic power of the familiar and the hermetic aspects of their art as a system and language. 

Rhonda Weppler and Trevor Mahovsky are Vancouver-based artists who have worked collaboratively since 2004. A touring exhibition and catalogue of their work was produced in 2006 by the Southern Alberta Art Gallery, Liane and Danny Taran Gallery (Saidye Bronfman Centre, Montreal), Rodman Hall (Brock University, St Catharines), Doris McCarthy Gallery (University of Toronto Scarborough) and Cambridge Galleries. Other exhibits include: solo shows at Mount Saint Vincent University Art Gallery, Halifax (2007), Pari Nadimi Gallery, Toronto (2004, 2005), and the Contemporary Art Gallery, Vancouver (2006); group shows at Organism, Portland (2007),Art Gallery of Alberta, Edmonton (2007), Tokyo Wonder Site, Tokyo (2006), +gallery, Nagoya (2006), and loop-raum fur aktuelle kunst, Berlin (2005). Mahovsky has written for catalogues and journals including Artforum and Canadian Art. In 2000, Mahovsky was a resident at apexart in New York and Weppler participated in the Canada Council sponsored ISCP residency in New York in 2007. 

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