Photo: Trevor Mills, Vancouver Art Gallery
Marina Roy, "Your Kingdom to Command," 2016
Images: Marina Roy, "Your Kingdom to Command," 2016, site-specific installation at Vancouver Art Gallery Offsite
OFFSITE: Marina Roy
Your Kingdom to Command
Vancouver Art Gallery Offsite (1100 West Georgia St. Vancouver, BC)
Vancouver Art Gallery's latest public art project at Offsite with Marina Roy’s large-scale installation Your Kingdom to Command, is now on view. Consisting of a 25-metre plywood mural and a stump sculpture made with a tree salvaged after the 2015 windstorm in the Lower Mainland, this newly commissioned artwork speaks to transformation in nature, largely due to human intervention.
Roy’s enormous plywood mural utilizes bitumen and tar, a black molasses-like substance found in sedimentary rock that is commonly extracted and refined into fuel. In addition to bitumen, she uses colourful latex paints made of synthetic resins as well as shellac, a balm secreted by the female lac bug, which is processed and dissolved in ethanol to make liquid colourant. In Roy’s mural, the creature-like forms float as if in a landscape alongside an asphalt pyramid—the pyramid being a reference to the commonly held belief that humans are the planet’s dominating species, entitled to reign over the animal and plant kingdoms. The pyramidal form could also be read as a road receding into the horizon.
Examining the destructive effects an excessive use of fossil fuels has caused on the natural world, this installation comments on human reliance on the earth’s resources to the point of endangering biodiversity.
ABOUT THE ARTIST
Marina Roy is a visual artist, educator and writer based in Vancouver. Her practice crosses disciplines with a focus on drawing, painting and animation. Her work investigates material intelligence in a post-humanist perspective. The evolution of her practice draws upon Sigmund Freud and Georges Bataille, demonstrating modes of fantasy, eroticism, and compulsion by way of changed symbols and recognized icons. Born in Quebec, Roy moved to Vancouver in her youth and obtained a BA in French Literature at University Laval, a BFA from the Nova Scotia College of Art and Design, and an MFA from the University of British Columbia. She has shown nationally and internationally. She is an Associate Professor at the University of British Columbia, Department of Art History, Visual Art and Theory.
Offsite is the Vancouver Art Gallery’s outdoor public art space located at 1100 West Georgia Street between Thurlow and Bute Streets, west of the Shangri-La Hotel, in downtown Vancouver. Presenting an innovative program of temporary projects, it is a site for local and international contemporary artists to exhibit works related to the surrounding urban context. Featured artists consider the site-specific potential of art within the public realm and respond to the changing social and cultural conditions of our contemporary world. New projects are installed in the spring and fall of each year. Marina Roy: Your Kingdom to Command is the thirteenth installation in the Gallery's Offsite series, curated by Diana Freundl, Associate Curator, Asian Art.
Offsite is organized by the Vancouver Art Gallery and funded by the City of Vancouver through the Public Art Program. The Gallery recognizes Ian Gillespie, President, Westbank; Ben Yeung, President, Peterson Investment Group; and Residents of the Shangri-La for their support of this space.
Report courtesy of Vancouver Art Gallery.