ADRIAN FISH, Staged
Platform: Centre for Photographic + Digital Arts, Winnipeg
July 11 to August 27, 2008
By Stacey Abramson
Performative spaces have a grandiosity and presence unlike any other. Toronto- and Halifax-based artist Adrian Fish explores these rooms and their psychological complexities in his series Staged at Winnipeg’s Platform: Centre for Photographic + Digital Arts. Theatres around Toronto — the city where Fish received his Masters of Fine Arts from York University — are the focus of this series. His images present a host of architectural styles, and create distinct experiences that blend into a voyeuristic experience for the viewer. The camera is turned to the audience, putting the viewer in the position of performer. Void of an audience, the spaces that are captured in his large-format photographs illustrate the giant internal gasp that performance creates. Adding to the dramatics of the photographs, Brian Joseph David’s audio piece Voice Over will be played in the space. David’s compilation of over 5,000 film tag lines — read by an actual voice over artist — gives the space an additional element of presence. Fish is interested in the environment that both silence and architecture can create together. The sprawling silent rows and corridors of the audience sections are centre stage in each image. He invites the viewer to look into the vacant chairs and balconies to experience the presence that the emptiness creates.
Represented by: Loop Gallery, Toronto; Patrick Mikhail Gallery, Ottawa.