In shadows of the individual
Richelle Bear Hat, Deanna Bowen and Althea Thauberger
November 21, 2017 – February 25, 2018
Walter Phillips Gallery, Satellite Space
Eric Harvie Theatre, West Lobby
Curated by Yasmin Nurming-Por
Wednesday, December 6, 5:00 - 8:00 pm
In shadows of the individual is rooted in questioning the contemporary role of the political group, and how it can begin to emerge from the shadow of the political individual: a figure of power who overrules the presence of the group. This line of questioning requires a reimagining of what a political group desires, and a reformulation of the hierarchical and exclusionary perceptions used in constructing and maintaining political power within a state or national context. Its title partially borrowed from political philosopher Jodi Dean’s recent text, Crowds and Party, this exhibition finds dissatisfaction in contemporary criticism of group politics, instead approaching the idea of the political group through a more elementary arrangement: the family.
The history of the family is one founded upon labour, and particularly the immaterial labour of women. There are innumerable iterations of collectiveness and care within the construct of the normative and non-normative family, each with the potential to inform alternative modes of considering the structure and sensibility of the political group. Now widely recognized as an entity with political dimensions, the concept of family is taken up by the three filmic works in the exhibition. Employing structures of episodic documentary, non-linear narrative short and cinema, the works might be understood in relation to Stefano Harney and Fred Moten’s theorization of the hapticality. Each speaks to the aptitude of film for exploring the lived contexts of what Harney and Moten understand as a “refused sentiment, history and home” to build towards a shared “philosophy of feeling” for one another. Positing that these open narratives hold potential for a wider conversation about political desire that does not exclude the subject of feeling, the exhibition aims to provide points of reflection for how the political group might be reimagined with a renewed capacity to respond to the power of the few.
 Stefano Harney and Fred Moten, The Undercommons: Fugitive Planning & Black Study (Brooklyn: Autonomedia, 2013), 97-99.
Richelle Bear Hat is a Calgary-based Indigenous artist with both Blackfoot and Cree heritage. Bear Hat’s recent exhibitions include Horse Camp (2017), Ociciwan, Edmonton; Maps and Dreams (2017), Audain Gallery, Vancouver; Camp (2017), Arts Commons, Calgary; and Little Cree Women: Sisters, Secrets and Stories (2016), Art Gallery of Alberta, Edmonton. Richelle has also been a regional award winner of the BMO 1st Art Prize (2011).
Deanna Bowen is a descendant of the Alabama and Kentucky-born Black Prairie pioneers of Amber Valley and Campsie, Alberta, and is an artist currently based in Toronto. She the recipient of many awards including a Simon Guggenheim Foundation Fellowship (2016), and the William H. Johnson Prize (2014). Bowen’s recent exhibitions include The Family Camera (2017), Royal Ontario Museum, Toronto;
On Trial The Long Door Way (2017), Mercer Union Centre for Contemporary Art, Toronto; We Won’t Back Down (2017), Nuit Blanche, Toronto; Traces in the Dark (2015), Institute of Contemporary Art, Philadelphia; This Is Me, This Is Also Me (2015), McMaster Museum of Art, Hamilton.
Althea Thauberger is an artist and filmmaker based in Vancouver. Thauberger’s recent exhibitions and screenings have included In Search of Expo 67 (2017), Musée d'art contemporain, Montréal; Pictures from Here (2017), Vancouver Art Gallery, Vancouver; Taqseem (2017), KOEL Gallery, Karachi; Intersections: Contemporary Artist Films (2016), Audain Art Museum, Whistler; L'avenir (looking forward): La Biennale de Montréal (2014), La Musée d’art contemporain de Montréal, Montreal; Marat Sade Bohnice (2012), Liverpool Biennal. She is represented by Susan Hobbs Gallery, Toronto.
Walter Phillips Gallery Hours
Wednesday - Sunday 12:30 - 5:00 p.m.
Located at Banff Centre in Banff National Park, Alberta. Ground floor of Glyde Hall and is wheelchair accessible. The gallery is closed for public holidays.
For questions about the Walter Phillips Gallery, please contact:
Walter Phillips Gallery
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T1L 1H5 Canada