Hyperflat is a survey of Jeannie Thib’s extensive investigation into ornamental motifs. Thib’s work borrows decorative patterns from textiles and domestic surfaces, reconstitutes them through operations of cutting and piling, and reinvents them with magnification, repetition and excision. In doing so, the artist translates historical designs into contemporary industrial materials and extends them into three-dimensional, sculptural forms.
Curator Tila Kellman sees Thib’s manipulation of ornament as a critique of Modernism. Kellman writes: “In her practice, using advanced design and fabricating techniques and contemporary industrial materials, Jeannie Thib offers a critique of the modernist, rectilinear, standardized space and design that prizes efficiency. She asks, what if our built environment were based on ornamental floral patterns?”
Jeannie Thib (1955–2013) received a BFA from York University, Toronto, in 1979. She has exhibited widely across Canada and in Europe, the USA, Mexico and Cuba. She has had recent solo exhibitions at B and K Projects, Copenhagen, Denmark; Museo de Arte INBA, Ciudad Juárez, Mexico; and Maison Patrimoniale de Barthète, Boussan, France. Thib has participated in group exhibitions at Object Gallery, Sydney, Australia; Long Yi Bang Gallery, Beijing, China; and the Tree Museum, Gravenhurst, Canada. Her work is represented in numerous collections including the National Gallery of Canada, Musée des Beaux-Arts de Montréal, Musée d’art contemporain de Montréal and The Washington DC Convention Center, USA.
On her recent passing, Joy Walker, a Toronto-based artist and a collaborator of Thib’s, writes, “Jeannie has made us all look a little more closely at quiet details, bringing them into sharp focus. She has definitely done that for me. She will be deeply missed.”
Jeannie Thib: Hyperflat is curated by Tila Kellman and organized by Saint Mary’s University Art Gallery in Halifax.