Home Is Where the heArt Is

Art Matters Exhibit Explores Intimate Space

Home, Paralleled is a multi-disciplinary response to the idea of ‘home’ and its varying definitions. Photo Pierre Chauvin
Photo Pierre Chauvin
Photo Pierre Chauvin

What makes a home? Is the definition of home required to incorporate shelter, consistency and residency? Are there limitations to how one should define a home?

CTRLLAB, in affiliation with Art Matters, presents Home, Paralleled. The exhibit, curated by Dan Smeby, provides a multidisciplinary portrayal of the ever-personal conception of “the home.” The exhibit proves that a home is not necessarily restricted to the confines of a roofed space.

There are two immediate parallels provided within the space of Home, Paralleled. The first is the housing of 22 works of art that touch on the abstract concept of what constitutes a home, familiarity and belonging.

The second is the living space that is attached to the gallery, where the artist in residence, Katie Pretti, will be spending the remainder of the month living while creating similarly-themed artwork.

The entrance asks visitors to remove their shoes and enjoy perusing the gallery in their socks. The comfortable and inviting space provides a lounge area that accompanies Jia Chen Cardy Lai’s work “Comfort Food.” Lai’s contribution to the show is essentially one version of a home, or a space to retreat to.

The work is a bed frame filled with a mattress of foam fries and cheese curds, creating a bed of poutine that visitors are invited to nap in.

Artist Genvieve Labrie nailed her shoes along with an accumulation of her possessions to the wall. ­­­­Her personal belongings were taken from inside her portable home—her backpack. Her version of a home chronicles her travels, providing a timeline of her possessions that marks the furnishing of her backpack and the inconsistency of the space she refers to as home. She even included her Blackberry in the collection.

In contrast, artist Tara Chartrand’s work challenges the assumption behind the theme, as her art portrays the idea of losing one’s home to a flood. Her work illustrates the chaos that can emerge when one’s home is destroyed or lost. Chartrand points out the importance of the show’s title and emphasizes how many of the works contribute to the theme of paralleling and even deconstructing the traditional home.

The array of one, two and three-dimensional works showcased in this space invite viewers to understand the connection between the artists and what makes them feel at home.

The variety of interpretations provided are both evident and paradoxical, providing a unique compilation of works which attempt to describe the four letter word that seems so complex that it is virtually indescribable.

Home, Paralleled / CTRLLAB: Montreal Art House / 3634 St. Laurent Blvd. / runs until March 19 / FREE /
Catch Katie Pretti’s continuation of Home, Paralleled later in the month with Reckless Abandonment.