In late winter in southwestern Ontario, Canada, I take to the garden and prune our sour cherry trees. Periodically, during spring, I prune the odd branch. At this time the grass is lush and wild and there are a few blooms on the branches which begin to fade almost immediately. I captured this ephemeral pruning/blooming moment in this acrylic painting, made on waste plywood.
The construction waste plywood for the painting below is from the site of the construction of our new home in rural southwestern Ontario. The painting is 1/4″ thick and slightly warped but could be mounted further to flatten out the board. All of the aforementioned is intentional and part of my art practice of using what’s available while painting what’s around me. So, this is “construction site” meets “spring bloom”. The painting itself has been professionally finished despite its humble beginning – with isolation and varnish coats that are fine art archival quality. When I hang the painting on my own walls the minor warping of the board does not really show and relays the rustic and humble nature of the work.
There is so much about the rural landscape that is hidden. In urban settings the trained eye sees signs of queerness and sexuality. Daily rituals – a drag show, a pride parade, sex workers, a glance from a stranger, a neighbourhood or cafe to gather in, a poster – bring otherness to the fore. During this pandemic I wondered: “What are the farmers doing? Where does longing surface? Where and when is sexuality externalized?”. This photographic series “Concession” ruminates on those “unseen other” things that we could demand of our selves and of others; those “unseen other” things that could be granted to our selves and to others; and those things that are remain locked away neither granted nor demanded.