Canada is pleased to present new works by Xylor Jane, Mary Manning, and RJ Messineo. These artists—who live and work in Greenfield, Massachusetts; Manhattan; and Brooklyn, New York respectively—have practices that function as a form of diary keeping. Their works meditate on the value of a single day through the measurement of time, human connection, and our ever-changing personal spaces.
Xylor Jane uses a series of numbers—often prime numbers, palindromes, or both—to create her paintings. Placed in stacked rows, the numbers transform into intricate grids of geometric typography and subtle color harmonics. Jane’s meticulous pointillist application of dots memorializes carefully selected numerical patterns, which often relate to calendar dates, lifespans, or periods of time that are of particular significance to the artist. Some works in the show, such as Untitled (prime times zero hundred two hours through twenty three fifty seven hundred hours), are actual calendar systems of Xylor’s own design used to measure time in her own idiosyncratic way.
Mary Manning's photographic works, presented individually or in compositions employing multiple photos, document the artist's life and scenes from their creative community. Manning’s work is comparable to creative nonfiction. The collected snapshots accumulate slowly, knitting themselves together to create constellations of singular moments of interiority and social experience. The offhand quality of the work fits Manning’s subject matter and veils the care that they put into assembling the finished piece. The photos take on particular poignancy at a moment when the boundaries of personal and community oriented spaces are being renegotiated.
You're working with fragments of time - moments captured and revisited or reworked usually through grouping, sequencing, or layering. What current themes or moments in time have you been attracted to recently?
Recently care is the most attractive quality in what I'm looking for or even hoping to present. Simply & unapologetically, care is IT.
Can you share a poem or a quote from a poem that resonates with you?
"Rocks is as good as anything." a line from an Alice Notley poem called "As Good as Anything"
Is there something you would like to explore with your work in the future that you haven't yet?
There is one thing but I don't want to say until I actually do it. : )
RJ Messineo catalogs the shifting quality of light and color that comes through her Brooklyn studio windows over the course of a day, season, year. Her recent paintings employ a system of movable rectangles of plywood placed over a stretched canvas support and provisionally held in place with magnets. Over the course of making the painting, the panels are painted, moved, exchanged, and removed, sometimes becoming embedded in passages of built up paint. The sense of movement and the physical residue of her painting process serves as a metaphor for observing and existing in a particular moment with awareness.
Conversations around shifts or changes within the last year seem to keep unfolding even as we inch closer to a new year. Has your work experienced any shifts or changes over the last year?
yeah lots. Like many people, my personal life has been filled with change..its not totally unfamiliar. Being an artist is at baseline a precarious enterprise for most, but structurally and everything else this year has been particularly extreme for me personally. Though there were plenty of long days in the studio where I was really aware of a kind of ancient-feeling sameness.. like oh yeah there you are cadmium. still red. still opaque and etc. (Still??!! and Thats all?!!) A temporal collision of sorts. The last two years, I have been working with a different format, a moveable grid system involving magnets and rectangular plywood pieces, so the paintings themselves come about differently. Its all about the shifting. So, artistically, I have been addressing what is new territory for me.
What are some sources of inspiration for your new paintings?
I spent a good bit of of time this past year in physical pain. which definitely has an effect on perception. Also taking pot. The drive from NY to Western MA. Walking over the Williamsburg bridge into Manhattan.
Would you consider yourself a teller?
No. I forget words all the time.