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I Come From The Fiery Village

June 14 @ 7:00 pm - 10:00 pm

Cost: 0

Common Ground Art Gallery is pleased to announce the most recent clutch of paintings by local artist DEAN CARSON.

Please join us for the opening reception of this exhibition on Friday, June 14th at 7 pm when we formally celebrate Dean Carson’s latest exhibition, I Come From the Fiery Village. It promises to be a cultural event that is not to be missed, so note the date and plan on attending!

Local artist Dean Carson’s newest body of work, an exhibition of paintings entitled I Come From the Fiery Village, continues his lifelong investigation into an extremely considered exploration of the interstices between fine art painting and cult cinema. Dean has long been a student of the cinema and for just as long Dean has sought ways as a painter to make cinema the subject of his art. Or his art has sought to discover not immediately obvious ways of making his painting more cinematic, whichever you prefer. I Come From the Fiery Village is simply the latest installment of his meditations on this theme – painting and cinema — a leitmotif which runs through Dean Carson’s serious intentions as an artist and of the lofty concerns running through his body of work as a whole.

This latest takes as its starting point a scene from the globally regarded Belarussian anti-war film Come and See, a 1985 cult classic directed by Elim Klimov. Carson’s work focuses on an intense sequence in the film which shockingly depicts the grisly and brutal military execution of an entire village.

I Come From The Fiery Village, as seen through the subjective lens of Dean Carson, is an examination of the aesthetics of fire and the aestheticization of violence. In a series of impressions inspired by cinema and captured by the artist, Dean Carson’s newest paintings grow out of his interpretation of this single catastrophic event, but as an event subsequently re-imagined in a series of film stills. Images for the paintings were culled from sources on the internet, and multiple images depicting the same scene are juxtaposed to create an alternate version of a war-time atrocity, one which historically took place in Khatyn Forest in 1943 and saw an entire village, with all its inhabitants, burned to the ground.

The event is an historical one, a true story of wartime atrocity, but since its representation is within the context of its reinterpretation as a film, and a little-seen foreign art-house cult film no less, it can only ever be a representation of atrocity at a remove and not atrocity itself. Dean Carson’s new paintings stand somewhere close to where some of this can actually be observed and be given due consideration, but only this time, this latest manifestation is thrice removed from the actual reality. Nevertheless, from this particular vantage, we can see a lot, which is what Dean Carson is counting on us to do.

Common Ground Gallery

Mckenzie Hall, 3277 Sandwich Street
Windsor, ON