Wednesday, August 29, 2012

Storytime: Glen Johnson & Leslie Supnet

Gallery 1C03 season opener!

Glen Johnson and Leslie Supnet

September 6 – October 6, 2012

Artist talk by Leslie Supnet (Room 2M70): Thursday, September 6 at 6:00 p.m.
Opening reception (Gallery 1C03): Thursday, September 6, 7:00 – 9:00 p.m.
“Storytime with Uncle Glennie” performative readings (Gallery 1C03): Friday, September 7 at 2:00 p.m. as part of University Orientation Week and Saturday, September 29 at 2:00 p.m. as part of Culture Days

Gallery 1C03 at The University of Winnipeg is proud to present Storytime, a two-person exhibition of new collaborative bookworks and short animated films created by Glen Johnson and Leslie Supnet. Stemming from their mutual interest in the tradition of illustrated stories and a shared affinity for anthropomorphizing in their respective practices, Johnson and Supnet transform Gallery 1C03 into a mock library reading room. Storytime offers visitors the opportunity to read Johnson and Supnet’s paired stories and drawings which take the form of oversized illustrated children’s books. A series of animated stories will be screened in a retro living room setting as well.

Johnson's performances are part of his ongoing "Uncle Glennie" story reading practice in which he attempts to replicate the experience of a children’s story time. While Johnson's readings are modeled on children’s story times, the content of his tales is not tailored for young audiences. When "Uncle Glennie" is not performing, his book of stories will be left on the table by his chair in Gallery 1C03 for visitors to peruse.

Supnet's drawings and short animated films, like Johnson's stories and readings, appear child-friendly on the surface but they often deal with dark subject matter in a subtle and adult-oriented way. Supnet says that her images reference "identity, isolation, longing and despair, all with a touch of whimsy and the surreal.” She is interested in using her drawing “as a mechanism to cope with the little tragedies we all face day to day.”  Each work possesses a strong and instantly recognizable sentiment, including her distinct brand of melancholy and an edge of irony. She hopes to “invoke a sense of childhood wonder, and inspire playfulness in the lives of the viewers.”

Glen Johnson is a Winnipeg-based writer, installation and performance artist whose work invariably involves text (especially when he is writing). Johnson tells stories as “Uncle Glennie” and, as himself, he has delivered faux-lectures to stunned audiences in at least three provinces. In 2011 he created the Artistic Licence Bureau for PLATFORM. He is also responsible for the website Johnson received a Bachelor's Degree in Classics from The University of Winnipeg in 1993 and expects that some day they will ask for it back.

Leslie Supnet is an animator and illustrator from Winnipeg, who engages in personal and lyrical narratives, often tackling themes of struggle and existence, using introspection as a necessary ingredient in all of her work. Since creating her first animation in 2007, her filmography has grown to include 12 works, with screenings at over 100 film festivals worldwide. The recipient of numerous awards for her creative endeavours, Supnet was recently honoured with the 2012 Winnipeg Arts Council’s RBC On The Rise Award. She is also a graduate of The University of Winnipeg.

Gallery 1C03 gratefully acknowledges financial assistance from The University of Winnipeg and the Manitoba Arts Council for this project. We are also grateful for the support of Cunningham Business Interiors Ltd., The University of Winnipeg Theatre & Film Department, The University of Winnipeg Alumni Affairs office and the University of Winnipeg Students' Association.

Gallery 1C03 hours: Monday – Friday: 12:00 – 4:00 p.m.; Saturday: 1:00 – 4:00 p.m.
Admission free & open to all!

Image: Glen Johnson & Leslie Supnet, The Bear Who Despised A.A. Milne, 2012, mixed media. Courtesy of the artists.

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