Close Encounters with York’s Glendon Gallery


The scultpures of renowned Montreal artist John Latour will be shown at an exhibition entitled Close Encounters, Nov. 4 to Dec. 13, at York’s Glendon Gallery, 2275 Bayview Avenue.

In recent years, Latour has been inspired by old-fashioned pieces of furniture and found objects as source material for his art. In the current show, common furnishings – broken chairs, a chest of drawers and a wooden cane – are transformed into strangely unfamiliar pieces. Nostalgia gives way to a tension that invites viewers to reconsider the manner in which these pieces are normally regarded.

“Everyday objects are often taken for granted within their utilitarian values,” said Close Encounters guest curator Denis Longchamps, “but they are also laden with memories, souvenirs and mystical auras based on facts that our imaginations exaggerate or diminish with the passage of time. John Latour’s works are made from such objects. Beautiful in their formal styles, to confront them is to revisit our past, to have a close encounter with ourselves.”

The exhibition also includes examples of an untitled and ongoing, text-based series that Latour began in 1999. In this series, the artist uses white paint to blank out entire passages of text from some of his favourite works of fiction, including Frankenstein and Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde. As the original narratives disappear, new and largely intuitive ones begin to emerge from the words that remain.

Latour has participated in several group exhibitions and special projects in Canada and abroad, and is the recipient of grants from the Canada Council for the Arts and the Ontario Arts Council.