VCAD Faculty Showcases Artwork in Interactive Exhibit: a soul is not made of atoms


June  

02, 2020
VCAD Faculty Showcases Artwork in Interactive Exhibit: a soul is not made of atoms

We have some exciting news to share: our very own Trevor Van den Eijnden, Academic Director of Visual Arts and Design, has his own art exhibit on display at The Reach Gallery Museum in Abbotsford. If you’re looking for some art inspiration, Trevor’s showcase – a soul is not made of atoms – is now available via virtual exhibit with three separate video installments, courtesy of The Reach @ Home.

Comprised of paintings, sculptures, laser-cut and paper-cut works, light installations, shadows, and digital photography, this exhibition is thematically linked to Trevor’s concept of grief, time, and nature.

“Grief is something that everyone goes through,” says Trevor. “Our world is struggling through various levels of grief – everything from political discourse to culture. This exhibition is about the grief that stems from this, not about environmental issues, but how we process the issues of environmentalism and how we might find a better way to exist with nature.”

Through four rooms, Trevor is able to showcase a variety of light and colour, in which each collection tells a different story. We’ve highlighted a few of the bigger collections below:

In a series of photographs, Trevor depicts nineteenth-century landscapes with super saturates to show how sunlight remains on the horizon long after the sun has set, due to dust and ash lingering in the air. These vibrant sunsets show us how the “increase of beauty” is the result of climate change deterioration. Trevor suggests that our past shows us a glimpse of what the future holds.  

Through his fascination with historical wallpapers, Trevor created familiar strangers to depict the relationship of humans and nature, and how our ability (as humans) to negatively affect nature continues to grow and intensify. Through laser-cut, paper sculptures, this 10-piece collection features different wallpaper designs from various decades, starting as early as the Industrial Revolution era. In order to interact with this collection, individuals must shine a flashlight or smartphone device on each piece, as the shadows of these patterns are only visible through “human activity;” which helps to portray Trevor’s concept that humans have influenced nature.

A popular favourite, sham real shadows is another laser-cut piece, but this one created with micro prism film and MDF wood. The positioning of the light bulbs inside the piece allows warm light to exit, while green light is reflected. In this piece, the viewer is an active participant of the work, as the shadow falls directly on the physical body of the viewer as they engage with the work. For Trevor, shadows portray an echo of a real object, and similarly, a designed, interpretation of nature is an “echo of nature.” Even if we cannot see a true, unfiltered version of nature, his pieces present thought-provoking topics on the tensions between nature, human design, and art.  

Trevor’s favourite piece, and one that remains close to his heart, salve for grief, showcases a series of philosophical typography, where he mourns the death of his beloved dog. Combining ecological grief and personal grief through micro prism acrylic, the kerning of these journal excerpts are intentionally tight to create a jumbled effect, which in turn, is more visual and portrays confusion and uncertainty. Trevor aims to remind us that “grief is never static” and “something we live with through time.” The dynamic colours of these pieces serve to show us that beauty can still persist through loss and despair, and provides hope for the vision of a new reality. 

The Reach Gallery Museum has potential reopening plans for small groups beginning in June, with a soul is not made of atoms exhibit extending until end of August. See The Reach’s website for updates and more details. Alternatively, the virtual exhibits are available to view at any time from the comfort of your own home. See here for virtual exhibit episode one, episode two, and episode three.

A huge congratulations are in order to Trevor on his spectacular exhibit – we hope this provides you with both inspiration and enjoyment!