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Opening October 28, 2022 in the Alternator Centre for Contemporary Art's Main Gallery is "and a Rag in the Other" by M.E. Sparks.

“and a Rag in the Other” presents a series of draped canvas paintings by M.E. Sparks. This work explores the tension between pictorial representation and the material conditions of painting. Working primarily with un-stretched canvas, Sparks cuts images from art history to bring them into her own line of vision. Through a process of quotation, deconstruction and collage, the paintings in this exhibition feel somewhat like incomplete sentences. Modular and layered, they resist a finished state while implying the possibility of future reorganization.

In her practice Sparks pulls apart and rearranges borrowed forms, many of which are taken from historical depictions of youth and femininity within the prickly territory of modernist painting. Rather than present a linear narrative, this mode of reassembly aims to temper expectations of legibility and interrupt an immediate reading of the image. The paintings become more about not knowing, of not being able to pin down or define, and of both the vulnerability and transformative potential that emerge when there is no clear image and no clear answer.

"and a Rag in the Other" is on from October 28 - December 10, 2022.