The FOFA Gallery presents artists Andréanne Abbondanza-Bergeron’s work until Nov. 5
On Oct. 1, Andréanne Abbondanza-Bergeron’s LACUNA-LACUNE opened at Concordia’s FOFA gallery. The solo exhibition features a series of photographs displayed in the gallery’s vitrines, and two other installations in its main space. In her work, the artist contrasts the use of industrial materials like rope, steel, and glass, with references to nature and organic patterns front and centre.
The exhibition concludes a long creative process for Abbondanza-Bergeron, one that started before the pandemic. LACUNA-LACUNE was supposed to be presented last year, but the delay impacted the artist’s creative process. The photographs that are now part of the exhibition were taken during the pandemic, when the artist began to take walks in the forest. These photographs present human waste in natural spaces. One of them shows pieces of blue glass invading a natural environment that is composed of moss, grass, and rocks.
Abbondanza-Bergeron’s creative process is usually inspired by architecture, but it evolved in a different way this time. Nature became a central element of the show, influencing the final exhibition and the main installation. “This piece has something that has shifted a lot more towards the organic, towards […] something that for me is more influenced by the natural form,” she said. The artist explained that nature has always inspired her, but never in a way that was expressed in her art pieces.
The main space of the FOFA gallery is filled with a steel installation. This massive piece is composed of multiple steel ribbons, which are usually used to tie pallets together. The bands of steel are attached to the walls of the gallery and come down to the floor in an undulating fashion. Visitors are allowed to walk under the installation to appreciate it from another perspective.
Abbondanza-Bergeron explained that prior to creating this piece, she envisioned the tension that the large creation could put on visitors who looked at it from the front. When it was completed, she discovered that looking at the work from underneath managed to conjure the opposite feeling. “The interior became something quite different, more enveloping, more of a relief from all that tension,” she said, adding that it results in the viewer “actually just feeling protected and embraced.”
Lighting is also an important part of the main installation. The soft lights being used add texture to the steel. Under the installation, the ribbons’ shadows are interlaced, creating straight and curved lines on the floor. For Abbondanza-Bergeron, light is always an important part of her work, using it here to create a sense of weightlessness. She found a way to use light to reveal “the volume and the different stratas, the different cascading waves and […] to make that mass become more three-dimensional.”
The FOFA gallery’s black box, a closed room painted in black where artworks requiring dark lighting are presented, showcases another installation by Abbondanza-Bergeron. The art piece is composed of window screens hanging from the ceiling. Two panels of the thin screen-like material are put together and sway as the air in the room pushes them from side to side. Here, lighting also plays a crucial role, since the screen fabric under light produces wave-like patterns as it shines through the material. For Abbondanza-Bergeron, this work of art is a bridge between the photographs showcased in the gallery’s vitrines, and the larger installation piece, since it is made of industrial screen material while being “related more directly to natural shapes and the natural world.”
The catalogue of the exhibition will be launched on Nov. 4. “For me, having a catalogue is really nice to keep a piece alive a little longer,” she said. This exhibition and its catalogue are the conclusion of the Claudine and Stephen Bronfman Fellowship in Contemporary Art research fellowship that was granted to Abbondanza-Bergeron in 2017. The LACUNA-LACUNE exhibition will be open to the public until Nov. 5.
Photograph by Véronique Morin