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Laura St. Pierre / Spectral Garden
On view July 6 to August 11
Opening Reception: Friday, July 6 at 8pm
Artist Talk: Friday, July 6 at 7pm

For the last decade, Laura St. Pierre has created installation, photo, and time-based works that question how we live in cities and on our planet. Her current project, Spectral Garden, involves collecting and preserving flora from changing landscapes. Using a technique common to botanists, the plants are preserved in isopropyl alcohol. This maintains their three-dimensional form, but leeches the colour from their flowers and leaves. Unlike a seed or a cutting, these tissues cannot be used to create new life; instead, they preserve a moment in time and space.

Since returning to Saskatchewan in 2013, St. Pierre has been struck by the poor air quality that the residents of Saskatoon experience due to forest fires that have been raging in the Western Boreal Forest each summer. For weeks at a time, city-dwellers can smell the forest burning: the odour is a powerful reminder of how this ecosystem is changing. In response, she began to collect plant specimens from the Boreal Forest near Jan Lake, SK, close to her family’s cabin. Since her last visit to the area, it has also been ravaged by fires, a fact that resonates as she works in the studio.

These carefully preserved plants have been the subject of a series of photographs. New for PAVED Arts, St. Pierre is creating a four-channel HD video projection that uses these unique specimens as a jumping-off point. Immersive and otherworldly, Spectral Garden continues St. Pierre’s exploration of our relationship to the natural world.

This project is presented by PAVED Arts, in a partnership with the Dunlop Art Gallery as part of Roadside Attractions, funded through the Canada Council for the Arts’ New Chapter initiative.

Laura St. Pierre’s installations, sculptures, public works, and photography have been exhibited throughout Canada and abroad. St. Pierre earned undergraduate degrees at UBC and the U of A, and completed a Master of Fine Arts degree at Concordia University in Montreal. She has received arts grants from the Conseil des Arts et Lettres du Quebec, the Alberta Foundation for the Arts, the Saskatchewan Arts Board, and the Canada Council. Exhibitions in 2018 include Winter Garden at VivianeArt (Calgary), The Museum of Future History and the Dunlop Art Gallery (Regina), La vie fragile (Montreal), and a new video project at PAVED Arts (Saskatoon) as part of the Roadside Attractions series developed by the the Dunlop Art Gallery (Regina). //

This is one of the 200 exceptional projects funded through the Canada Council for the Arts’ New Chapter initiative. With this $35M initiative, the Council supports the creation and sharing of the arts in communities across Canada. // Ce projet est l’un des 200 projets exceptionnels soutenus part initiative Nouveau chapitre du Conseil des arts du Canada. Avec cette initative 35 M$, le Conseil des arts appuie la creation et le partage des arts au Coeur de nos vies et dans !’ensemble du Canada.