Instinctual Intellects

Vernissage Explores the Nature of Circular Expression

shawna mcleod, confetti disco 1, 2010, acrylique, et huile sur panneau, 20” x 20” (50cm x 50cm)

Galerie PUSH will play host to an exhibition curated by Kyle Beal. The basis: circles.

Out Thinking in Circles, in Circles Thinking Out will feature multi-disciplinary works that specifically integrate the circle or the circular as the dominant element of the work. The vernissage ventures to twist traditional connotations such as time, unity or the universe to loopy “spiritual rings and meanings found at the periphery.” The featured works “orbit a space from the horizon to the belly button.”

In addition to curating the event, Beal has written an accompanying text to contextualize the exhibition. He sat down and discussed circles coming upon circle closing on circles encompassing curved lines upon continuation with The Link.

The Link: Tell me a bit about the inspiration behind this show. How did the idea come to you?
Kyle Beal: You see something—you see something else. Perhaps you make a connection between the two. Ultimately, something has to stick in your brain. [It has to] perplex you a bit so [that] you want to look at it, keep approaching it—maybe not to solve it. It offers a kind of resistance. Plus there is the question of what is going to happen when this is beside that, and across from that other thing.

What did you look for when choosing works for the event?
What I was looking for was a formal use of the circle or the circular, in a direct sort of way. But my sense is that, in the works in this show anyways, the simplicity of basic forms acts as a ground from which things can get complicated; a deceit in the apparent simplicity.

Where did the title of the show come from?
The title came from an idea of thinking or speaking or walking in circles, the indirect approach, and wanting to complicate the matter a little more. To make the title loop back on itself.

How long have you been dealing with circular ideals?
I think that is the nature of problem solving. Things are seldom a straight line.

What is it about a circle?
They are so common as to be nearly invisible.

“From the horizon to the belly button.” Linking the human body with the larger world?
The thought basically was that we all get caught navel-gazing on occasion, a retreat to our interior—the mind. While on the other hand the horizon is a kind of unknown, impossible to reach. If you have ever been to the middle of the ocean or middle of the prairie, then you know you’re simply surrounded by the horizon.

So you are correct—it was a way of linking the world of the mind with the physical world.

Galerie PUSH (372 Ste. Catherine St. W. Suite 425) will host a vernissage for Out Thinking in Circles, in Circles Thinking Out on Thursday, Dec. 2. The event will run from 6:00 p.m. to 9:00 p.m. The exhibition can be viewed after the vernissage during gallery hours.

This article originally appeared in Volume 31, Issue 16, published November 30, 2010.