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You won’t solve the problem with an air freshener

Exhibition Title: You won’t solve the problem with an air freshener

Artist: Dominique Pétrin

Opening: October 26, 7:00 - 10:00 PM

Exhibition Dates: October 27 - December 9, 2017

Image: You won’t solve the problem with an air freshener (installation view), silkscreened paper installation. Photo by Dennis Ha.

Artist Talk: October 31, 6 PM
Rennie Hall (B2160)
Emily Carr University
520 E. 1st Avenue, Vancouver

grunt gallery will host an exhibition with Montréal-based artist Dominique Pétrin – the artists’ first solo exhibition in Vancouver. Rooted in her practice as a printmaker, Pétrin creates immersive, highly graphic environments, often producing hundreds of individual prints for a single installation. For her exhibition at grunt gallery, the artist will be working to create a unique installation that acknowledges the architecture of the gallery space.

You won’t solve the problem with an air freshener will be created on-site and composed of silkscreened paper pasted to the gallery walls. Freely inspired by the history of ornamentation and pixelated digital aesthetics, Pétrin’s installations are often riotous in execution, creating an environment both vibrant and unsettling.

Embedded in Pétrin’s maximal (as opposed to minimal) practice is a graphic insistence of the time and labour involved in the creation of her room-encompassing collages. Belying digital technologies capable of spawning image after image ad infinitum, Pétrin’s reproductions are executed, cut and collaged by hand. The artist’s recent exploration of quilting forms (in her exhibition Get rid of the fabric softener at Galerie Antoine Ertaskiran) establishes a more direct connection to the issue of gendered labour and the creation of a common “we” in the execution of communally determined, intergenerational aesthetic forms. Referencing textile-inspired graphics as a starting point, You won’t solve the problem with an air freshener, considers the root of shared identity via pattern reproduction, an emphatic counterpoint to the coolness invoked by endlessly (and one often assumes carelessly) proliferated digital imagery.

Pétrin will be delivering an artist talk, presented in partnership with the Audain Faculty of Art’s Visual Art Forums at Emily Carr University, on October 31, at 6 PM.

Curated by Vanessa Kwan.

Dominique Pétrin is a multidisciplinary artist living and working in Montréal, Canada. A former member of the petrochemical rock band Les Georges Leningrad from 2000-2007, she has collaborated with artists such as Banksy, Sophie Calle, the Pil & Galia Kollectiv and choreographers Antonija Livingstone, Stephen Thompson and Jennifer Lacey. Her work has been exhibited across Canada, France, the United States, Belgium and the United Kingdom. In 2014 she was longlisted for the Sobey Award. She is represented in Canada by Galerie Antoine Ertaskiran.


Download PDF: Obliterations, a curatorial essay by Vanessa Kwan. November 2017.

Watch a portion of curator Vanessa Kwan’s interview with Dominique Pétrin.


Watch a time-lapse of the installation of You won’t solve the problem with an air freshener.  Video by Rosaline Libertad

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