Pete Smith: Initial Public Offering
Opening Reception: Saturday, May 4, 1 to 3pm.
Exhibition Dates: May 4 to June 16.
Artist’s walk and talk: May 4, 1:15pm, followed by Reception.
Curator’s walk and talk: May 16.
“An abstract painting, image making machine”
Station Gallery celebrates the important community legacy of abstraction through the works of emerging artist Pete Smith. Durham Region is now home to Pete Smith’s studio practice. It’s not by chance that the Region marks the first meeting of English-Canada’s abstract group Painters Eleven sixty years ago. This happened on Whitby’s lake-shore in 1953.
It began as a simple learning exercise. Pete Smith began using Flash as an animation tool. He took the visual information he had accumulated over five years and threw it in his animation, Blind Carbon Copy. The shapes swirl, mix and dance in unexpected ways. From this animation he then froze frames and painted large paintings. Station Gallery is the first public cultural institution to host a solo exhibition of Smith’s abstract drawing, painting and animation. Smith’s abstract work gives vivid clarity to a contemporary culture replete with a miasma of imagery and sensations. He catalogues shapes and images that surround him through drawings and creates crude animations informed by those drawings. He selects single frames from the digital transitions to reproduce as large paintings.
Pete Smith wonders: “how can I transform the ephemeral, digital image into a specific ‘thing’, into a physical object with compelling material attributes? How can I transform an image into a painting?”
About the Artist:
Pete Smith is an artist, critic and sometimes curator who lives in Bowmanville. He has exhibited his work extensively since completing his BFA from York University in 1998 and his MFA from the University of Guelph in 2007. Recent solo exhibitions include: Blind Carbon Copy at p|m Gallery, Toronto (2012), New Drawings at Colorida Gallery in Lisbon, Portugal (2012), Newspaper Drawings at Joan Ferneyhough Gallery in North Bay (2010) and Proverbs for Paranoids at Elissa Cristall Gallery in Vancouver (2009). His writings on art have appeared in Canadian Art and Border Crossings magazines. He has held teaching positions at the University of Toronto, The University of Guelph and The University of Western Ontario. Currently, he is a lecturer in drawing and painting at the OCAD University, and he is Vice President of the board of directors at the Visual Art Centre of Clarington.