Colin Miner has created an installation of three photographic images that explores water, fluidity and transformation as evidence of the cyclical nature of time. Miner’s visual proposition avoids a didactic opinion on water, instead posing narrative questions about our assumptions regarding water’s pure state, its nature as a constant resource, and the disruption of its cycles by climate change as witnessed in our age. Two of Miner’s images reference an exposed “eye” of blue ice photographed on the Columbia Icefield during an artists’ residency at the Banff Centre in 2012. The blue eye of ice is evidence of the quick retreat of the glaciers on the Icefield. When Miner revisited in late 2014, looking for the site he was struck with dramatic change—the terrain had shifted. The ice was blackened with a soot-like substance, perhaps a by-product of nearby forest fires. That day, rain and lack of light prevented a second photograph. It was back in the studio that the artist decided to recompose the original image through an “inversion” of colour. Both images, from two disparate points in time, are cropped within a background that hints at the infinite expanse of the cosmos. Miner’s juxtaposition of the two images, the two “eyes” facing one another, shows a transition from dark to light telling a troubling story of how rapidly nature and water can and do shift. The third image in the suite is a composite photograph of three images of a neon sculpture that Miner fabricated for The Source: Rethinking Water Through Contemporary Art in 2014. The work integrates three photos that document the neon piece at various stages of its being: from the fabrication studio, to its first installation at Rodman Hall Art Centre in 2014 to a recent showing at Modern Fuel Gallery. Inherent in the layering of imagery is the phenomenon of the residual light “shadow” on the viewer’s retina—the highlights in the photograph burn white. Perching on the frame, the artist has attached a sprue (a bronze casting by product taken from the conduit to the mold in the foundry process) to which he clips a card with a geometric shape and an excision of the highlights from one of his photographs. The white frail paper mapping acts as a visual key to the larger work. In this complex manifestation, the artist raises the paradox of presence and absence in art. The artist reminds us that water has a liquid intelligence that offers a potentiality—it is only when objects emerge, becoming separate from water, that they acquire the limitations of time.
Curators - Stuart Reid & Patrick Mahon
Research project & group exhibitions with Nadine Bariteau, Raymond Boisjoly, Elizabeth Chitty, Patricia Coates, Soheila Esfahani, Gautam Garoo, Joscelyn Gardner, Patrick Mahon (+ with Dickson Bou, Mona Stonefish & Windsor grade 4+5 students), Colin Miner, Chris Myhr, Lucy + Jorge Orta, Troy Ouellette, Lee Rodney with Justin Langlois, Hamilton Perambulatory Unit and IN/TERMINUS Research Group, Quinn Smallboy, Jennifer Willet, and Gu Xiong
Documentation of my works at Rodman Hall in St. Catherines (2014) & Art Gallery of Windsor (2018/19)
Publications PDF (2014) & PDF (2018/19 AGW exhibition)