Paul Smith   Shadow Band

June 5, 1993 - July 4, 1993

Curator: Joan Stebbins
Organized by the Southern Alberta Art Gallery with funding assistance from the Alberta Foundation for the Arts.

Lethbridge artist Paul Smith’s large, spare canvases are characterized by their odd compositions and eccentric motifs. Smith collects a wide range of culturally produced imagery including suburban icons such as household product labels, popular and scientific illustrations, gadgets and toys. Their presence in the paintings alludes to the character of manufactured goods, marketing and commerce, and they are juxtaposed with images of natural phenomena such as birds,  flowers, fruit and internal organs. These works suggest strange underpinnings to our familiar world and jar the viewer’s initial nostalgic response, leaving one floating in much the same way as the objects in the paintings. He uses the term angiography as a metaphor for his paintings, referring to a medical process involving the injection of radiopaque substances into the bloodstream in order to render internal vessels discernible to x-rays. In other words, he renders visible the invisible workings of our perceptions and thus questions the apparent givens of pictorial language.

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