July 30 - Sept. 7
TEPKIK by Jordan Bennett
Allen Lambert Galleria
Tepkik by Jordan Bennett
For this work Bennett created a new suspended sculptural work that inspires a contemporary reflection of a traditional Mi’kmaq petroglyph, depicting the Milky Way, which has been found on the rocky shores of the lakes and rivers at Kejimkujik National Park in Nova Scotia. The piece is composed of visual elements rooted in Mi’kmaq visual culture of Mi’kmaki (Traditional Mi’kmaq Territory). These depictions of the land, the sky, our galaxy, and the universe as represented through legends and stories are presented through my own lens and historical understandings of traditional Mi’kmaq quillwork patterns and motifs. This new work employs the use of printed fabric as well as reflective vinyl on aluminum such as is used for common road signs. Contemporary road signs tell of a place, a marker, a law or direction. Mi’kmaq visual culture is created through porcupine quillwork, clothing, baskets, canoes and other objects that also hold official signifiers of laws, places, cultural markers and direction. The use of these contemporary materials in combination with Mi’kmaq design will call to attention that our visual designs and motifs embedded with knowledge, are also our signs and stories. They are the voices of our ancestors and elements of our laws which we try to understand and follow. This artwork will create a visual link to Mi’kmaq ways of being and understandings of our known universe and our place in it by presenting a visual conversation exploring Mi’kmaq creation stories. The work titled Tepkik, the Mi’kmaq word for Night reflects on the time of day in which we can visually see our place in the galaxy most clearly, this work brings the stars and stories of our galaxy into view at any time of day.
Jordan Bennett, a multi-disciplinary artist, is shortlisted for the 2018 Sobey Art Award. He has participated in over 75 group and solo exhibitions, both nationally and internationally. Bennett calls Nova Scotia home.