Jessica Morgun and Tamara Rusnak
August 6 - September 26, 2021
Opening Reception Friday, August 6 4:00 - 7:00 p.m.
Goodie Bags at the opening reception provided by Liz's Sweet Treats and Creations.
The Art Gallery of Regina presents tactile sculptures and evocative drawings by Saskatchewan artists Jessica Morgun and Tamara Rusnak in the exhibition Imagined Objects from August 6 to September 26, 2021. Lumpy, worn, rubbery, creased, incised, weighty: the tactile detail that the artists have lavished upon their creations makes their imagined objects corporeal and substantial. Morgun's work, in particular, resurrects items lost-to-time as recalled by Regina citizens.
Assisted by the Art Gallery of Regina, Morgun interviewed local community members this past February about their lost belongings. She asked participants to describe the lost thing, concentrating on non-visual senses. Working from these descriptions, Morgun then sculpted a replacement for the absent object. The resultant stoneware monuments to lost belongings are poignant and absurd. Rather than explaining away these mysterious forms, poetic snippets of interviews conducted by the artist heighten the enigma of her project for the Art Gallery of Regina, Think of a Lost Thing.
On the other hand, Rusnak creates without even the guide of a transient memory; she intuitively sculpts and draws ingenious tools that have never existed, including creating new works on-site for her exhibition at the Art Gallery of Regina.
A narrow ceramic funnel is upended on four inadequate-looking legs, each no bigger than a cigarette, its stem arches like a delicately searching proboscis. This sculpture, Signal, like many others in Imagined Objects, is animated by its artful grubbiness and touching awkwardness.
Rusnak accompanies her sculptures, assembled from humble materials such as papier-mâché, wire and clay, with a series of drawings that evoke educational wall charts. The artist organizes these ambiguous shapes according to some unfathomable taxonomy within a lustreless rectangle of colour.
Neither artist intends to answer the question "what is it?" but to spark countless responses in viewers' imaginations, arousing curiosity to be carried into everyday interactions with objects.
About the Artists:
Tamara Rusnak's artmaking process is experimental and messy. She uses varied techniques and materials, such as papier maché, encaustic, weaving, carving, ceramics, felting, dyeing, and sewing, in a process of intuitive invention. She is guided by collecting, then assembling, arranging, and rearranging; often, old artworks are destroyed and repurposed in new works. Curiosity and connecting daily experiences to natural phenomena inspire Tamara.
Tamara has an MFA from the University of Regina and has shown her work in galleries across Canada. She recently relocated to Saanich, BC, which lies within the territories of the lək̓ wəŋən (Lacamel) peoples.
Born and raised in Treaty 6 territory, Jessica Morgun has spent most of her life in and around the city of Saskatoon. She explores what it means to be human in her drawing-based, site-specific, and relational art practice. In her quest to discover the role of the artist and her place as an individual in society, she often forges meaningful connections with other people in her relational art projects. Jessica often interviews people to uncover the stories and sentimental attachments they have to everyday objects. She draws viewers into a re-examination of overlooked things in her captivating physical interpretations of spoken descriptions that enhance these objects' strangeness and specialness. Jessica's desire to use her art practice to understand her world and create empathetic connections has led her to complete an Education Degree (Visual Arts Major, University of Saskatchewan 2006) and later,
an MA in Christian Studies at Regent College 2012). She completed her Masters of Fine Arts at the University of Saskatchewan in 2017.
images of Imagined Objects as installed at the Art Gallery of Regina, 2021. Documentation photos by Don Hall.
self-guided tour pamphlet:
transcript of exhibition audio tour:
exhibition audio tour:
August 26, 2021 Galleries West, "Imagined Objects: Materially evocative works ask us to suspend disbelief"
August 10, 2021 Kayleen Sawatzky of CTV met with curator Sandee Moore on Tuesday to discuss our new main gallery exhibition, Imagined Objects by Jessica Morgun and Tamara Rusnak, to take in our Outside the Box exhibitions featuring Regina artists Gerri Ann Siwek and Michael Gronnerud, and to talk with one of the artists, Melanie Monique Rose, participating in the AGR's multi-year creative collaboration between artists and bees under the guidance of beekeepers and senior artist Aganetha Dyck. https://regina.ctvnews.ca/video?clipId=2257294
August 8, 2021 Saskatchewan Weekend with Shauna Powers, CBC Saskatchewan. Listen: https://www.cbc.ca/listen/live-radio/1-205-saskatchewan-weekend/clip/15859357-imagined-objects-art-show-art-gallery-regina
August 8, 2021 CBC News, "Art Exhibit Features Sculptures Saskatoon Artist Created from Lost Objects" by Cory Coleman. Read: https://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/saskatchewan/regina-art-exhibit-sculptures-lost-items-1.6134175
February 18, 2021 Regina Leader-Post, "Artist Jessica Morgun wants to know about your lost objects" by Ashley Martin. Read: https://leaderpost.com/entertainment/local-arts/artist-jessica-morgun-wants-to-know-about-your-lost-objects
The Art Gallery of Regina is grateful to Sk Arts and the City of Regina for their core funding.