A little poem of mine about a stick plays a very, very tiny, tiny part in this show.
New works by Abbas Akhavan, Kelly Jazvac, and Ron Tran
September 16 - October 9 2010
Opening reception Thursday September 16 6-9pm
Enthusiasm, when controlled by subtle repression, results in either élan, originality, magnetism, charm or “IT”, depending on the manner of its use. Uncontrolled enthusiasm results in blaring jazz, fanaticism and recklessness. A complete lack of enthusiasm produces the obsequious waiter and the uneducated street car conductor.
Addressing white collar workers in the 1920s, self-help writer William Henry Schoenau argued the importance of an enthusiastic comportment. Then, as now, enthusiasm was key to success in business and social realms. Deployed correctly, it could elevate the individual to respect and prestige; unchecked, it could lead to embarrassment and ridicule.
In this exhibition, Abbas Akhavan, Kelly Jazvac and Ron Tran embody enthusiasm at its limits. Their three new bodies of work shuttle between experiences of exuberance, reverence, earnestness, mania and exhaustion. At times, enthusiasm registers more literally, as with Tran, whose work constitutes a fan-obsessed tribute to an unlikely subject, implicating a staggering number of voices. Elsewhere, enthusiasm appears in its formal dimension through Jazvac’s accretions of vinyl, their sagging features embodying the hangover effects of an overly frantic application of the stuff of countless advertising campaigns. Akhavan’s architectural intervention reads more abstractly, overtaking the gallery’s already overzealous design with a subtle, yet pernicious intrusion.
Born in Tehran, Abbas Akhavan is currently a Toronto resident. His practice ranges in medium from site-specific installations to drawing and video, with recent focus on spaces just outside the home – the garden, the backyard, and other domesticated landscapes. His work has been exhibited across Canada in galleries including Vancouver Art Gallery, Artspeak (Vancouver), and the Darling Foundry (Montreal), and abroad, with exhibitions at Kunsten Museum of Modern Art, Denmark; Le Printemps de septembre, France; The Third Line, Qatar and Dubai; Belvedere Museum, Austria. Akhavan is represented by The Third Line, Dubai.
Kelly Jazvac works primarily in sculpture and installation. She has exhibited nationally and internationally, most recently including Diaz Contemporary in Toronto, Blackwood Gallery in Mississauga, the Khyber ICA in Halifax, Atelierhof Kreuzberg in Berlin and i8 Gallery in Reykjavik. Upcoming projects include WARP Coup de Ville in Sint Niklaas, Belgium. She is currently based in London where she teaches sculpture at the University of Western Ontario. Jazvac is represented by Diaz Contemporary.
Ron Tran is a Vancouver based artist whose practice explores the ways that chance and coincidence influence daily life. Tran studied at Emily Carr Institute of Art and Design has participated in group and solo exhibitions in Canada, United States, Europe, and China. Tran has exhibited in East International 2007 Norwich England, the 6th Berlin Biennale, and is currently working toward a solo show at the Charles H. Scott Gallery Vancouver in 2011.
This exhibition is accompanied by a free publication with an essay by Nicholas Brown
Special Event: Weekend Leisure public presentation
Screening of Weekend Leisure Network cable access series and artist talk
Thursday, September 30, 7pm
Thursday and Friday: 5-9pm
Red Bull 381 Projects
381 Queen St. West, Suite 200