Introducing two artists from the first annual VAVxCUCCR residency
In celebration of the Concordia University Centre for Creative Reuse (CUCCR)’s first year of operation, the centre will host their first annual residency in collaboration with the VAV Gallery. Together, the VAV and CUCCR have selected seven undergraduate fine art student-artists who will be featured in an exhibition on March 22. The artists have been tasked with creating zero-waste artworks using CUCCR’s material.
The Concordian will profile the artists-in-residence each week leading up to the birthday event.
Bianca Arroyo-Kreimes moved to Montreal from Toronto three years ago to pursue her studies in animation. Arroyo-Kreimes is an experienced digital artist and is currently in her third year in animation.
“I try to see my art as a way to explore the many ideas I have going on in my head,” she said. “It’s a way of resolving them, I guess.” Most of her past work focuses on mythology, humanity and identity. Arroyo-Kreimes enjoys experimenting with under-camera animation methods, such as stop-motion.
Her work, Ballad for the Spirits, is a collection of one-minute video loops that address ideas of karma, the afterlife and recycling. Using a great mass of odds and ends like buttons, metal knobs and string from CUCCR, Arroyo-Kreimes has given these seemingly random objects a new purpose, a new shape, body and voice.
“The objects are now awakened and alive again in the bardo [a state between death and rebirth], as objects pass from one hand to another similarly to the way karma works,” she said.
The way she sees it, karma, rejuvenation and the recycling of objects are linked and belong within the same imaginary venn-diagram.
Gabrielle Desrosiers completed a DEC in set and costume design at the École de théâtre de St-Hyacinthe in 2007, and began her BFA in studio arts at Concordia in 2014.
The foundation of Desrosiers’ work lies in her travel experiences. Last year, she spent a semester abroad at the Bezalel Academy of Arts and Design in Jerusalem, Israel.
Desrosiers is a multidisciplinary artist, focusing on performance art and installation, combining various elements and mediums. For the residency, she is presenting part of a research-based project. She is fascinated by the gradient colours of the sunset and twilight period right before nightfall. Currently untitled, Desrosiers’ installation questions the metaphysical and psychological effects, reactions and suggestions of this
natural, observable phenomenon.
“I paint gradient colours of the sky and sunset on a flat surface, which is similar to the frontal position our body takes to look at it,” Desrosiers said. “But, in fact, the sky is all around. The sky is not a surface; it is an intangible, three-dimensional thing.”
She explained that her goal is to recreate the gradie
nt motif on a structure by reconstructing the two-dimensional surface and transforming it into an engaging, three-dimensional experience.
“I think that the verb ‘to experience’ is really important here,” Desrosiers said. She reflects on the twilight period as a symbol of ending and beginning. “It’s a transition,” she said. “A moment of time sort of suspended […] It is the end of something, and the beginning of something else. It’s a cycle.”
Desrosiers selected material from CUCCR that seemed interesting in connection with her research. She recalled spending large amounts of time in the depot, which led her to be inspired by the textures and patterns, or materiality of the objects. Desrosiers’ installation uses large sheets of paper, found objects, latex paint and a kiosque tent, all courtesy of CUCCR.
The artist said she is glad to be part of the CUCCR residency, as its zero-waste goals are similar to her own. She reuses her own material and often re-integrates them into different projects. “I feel like there is no complete finality in each of my projects,” Desrosiers said. “They can continue to evolve or merge [with others].”
Mark your calendars for CUCCR’s birthday at the VAV Gallery on March 22 at 5 p.m. Stay tuned for next week’s profiles on student-artists Roxane Fiore and Saba Heravi. Follow the Concordia University Centre for Creative Reuse on Facebook and Instagram @cuccr.
Photos courtesy of the artists.