Monday, June 13, 2016

Humber College Renews Commitment to Canadian Art with New Permanent Installation

This article originally appeared in Humber Communique on May 31.2016

Fibre Optic/Radiant Light 2 is installed in the North Campus Learning Resource Commons, a campus expansion building that houses the campus library, student services, the Registrar’s Office, Student Recruitment, Student Success & Engagement, the International Centre, the School of Liberal Arts & Sciences and administrative offices. The artworks’ position in proximity to natural light allows the 75” by 100” piece to engage in an interplay of pattern, cast colour, light and shadow as onlookers witness a display of colour in the spectrum of cyan, blue, magenta and gold.

The material behind this installation is dichroic glass, an architectural window film that exploits the optical qualities of the material and activates the space creating a new sensorial and ambient experience. Under Lizz Aston’s skilful hand, dichroic film has been projected, drawn and hand-cut, making it a unique installation designed specifically for the space.

Those familiar with Aston’s style will instantly place her exploration of old and new materials and forms of contemporary art in Fibre Optic/Radiant Light 2. Her extensive education has given her a strong framework from which she reflects upon in her own artistic practice: 

“In my work, I am inspired by the rich histories of textile production, lace-making and the decorative arts. Focusing on themes surrounding knot-work and interlacement, my work explores the intersection between traditional craft practice, contemporary art and design,” says Aston. “By taking imagery lifted from traditionally hand-made objects, and playing with methods of abstraction using digital tools, my work deconstructs formal patterns in unexpected ways to create a series of three-dimensional large-scale distorted and exploded views.”

This commission was developed through Humber’s Art Collection, which is a part of Humber’s ongoing practice of developing innovative teaching and learning opportunities. The installation is now available for public viewing on the 5th floor of the LRC, in an active public area just outside of the School of Liberal Arts and Science at Humber North Campus.

The Humber Galleries Art Collection complements the activities of our galleries by offering students, faculty, and staff the opportunity to encounter art around the campuses, making it part of the day-to-day culture of the college, but also providing access to integrated curriculum planning, student research and skills development. Its purpose is to provide opportunities for students, staff and the community to learn and grow through interaction with a diverse collection of contemporary Canadian art and artists.

Aston’s distinct style of working with delicate yet sculptural materials has earned her ample attention in magazines like Canadian Art and beyond. In addition, she has exhibited her work across Canada and in the United States, Australia and South Korea and has partnered with H&M Canada for Scotiabank Nuit Blanche, 3M and The Japanese Paper Place. Aston, who holds an Advanced Diploma in Crafts & Design from Sheridan College, is currently completing an Industrial Design degree from OCAD University.

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