Tracing Time is a series of art works that reflects my interest in the evolving interplay between identity and the aging process. It is a multilevel exercise that involves visual, technical and personal considerations.
Visually, the work is an unscripted narrative based on blown-up photographs of my own skin. Using graphite, acrylic wash, embroidery, and sometimes ink, I create organic compositions on raw canvas, experimenting with how the ground responds to the different manipulations used as I document the interaction between line and space. The use of untreated cotton canvas represents the skin’s outer layer and the roles it plays to contain, protect, and preserve the body.
Technically, the identity of the work is deliberately being tested. Is it drawing, painting, fibre art, or mixed media? This ambiguity mirrors our increased inability to discern age in our present culture with its provision of greater means to camouflage the aging process. And the scale of the pieces, which vary from miniature to larger sizes, symbolize the space we occupy in the world depending on the self-acceptance we possess at any given moment in time.
Finally, the personal fears and prejudices I encounter in relation to my own aging self-image are being explored through the creation of these pieces. The work reflects my ongoing coming to terms with the mixed emotions and contradictions I feel about growing older in appearance, function, and self perception.
About the artist
Originally from the Montreal area, Joanne Dero is a multi-disciplinary artist now working in Ottawa. She has a Visual and Creative Arts Diploma with a concentration in Integrated Media Studies, a Graphic Arts Diploma, a Bachelor degree in Education, and she has also pursued independent studies in mosaic and stained glass.
The artist’s work is based in an intuitive exploration of concept and material. She experiments with new techniques and innovative uses of material. Her work uses symbols, texture, and dynamic compositions to create a unique narrative. Her paintings are a documentation of her examination of issues such as identity, belonging, and memory.
Her works have found homes across Canada, the United States and internationally. As well as being a visual artist she is a poet and an ESL teacher.
Vernissage: July 26, 2019; 6 to 8 pm
Exhibition hours: Saturdays and Sundays, 11 to 4 pm