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Toronto

Susan Hobbs Gallery

Exhibition Detail
The Dada Portraits
137 Tecumseth Street
Toronto, Ontario M6J 2H2
Canada


October 21st, 2010 - December 4th, 2010
Opening: 
October 21st, 2010 6:00 PM - 8:00 PM
 
The Dada Portraits: plate 07, Tristan Tzara, Arnaud MaggsArnaud Maggs,
The Dada Portraits: plate 07, Tristan Tzara,
2010, archival ink jet print, 104 x 72 cm
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> DESCRIPTION

Continuing with his ongoing investigation of visual taxonomies, Arnaud Maggs’ exhibition features a new series of archival ink jet prints that mark a watershed moment for the artist.  The Dada Portraits are based on a recent discovery of a collection of 19th century French diagrammatic drawings used as educational tools for carpenters.  Each “little exploded drawing” is a partial cross-section of a wooden dwelling.  The edges of their vaulted roofs extend into oblique planes and subsequently rotate in space to reveal impossible perspectives and complex geometries.  Of these lattices of superimposed forms, Maggs recognized their anthropomorphic qualities, from Cubist heads, to Constructivist faces, to Dada experiments, or even portraits of their major players.  Though these drawings share affinities with the graphic sensibilities of the Dadaists—such as the fractured figures in Duchamp’s Nude Descending a Staircase—Maggs’ cool yet intimate image-based studies of his “ready-made” subjects follow a similar Dadaist impulse.  His renaming of each drawing after the celebrated figures of the Zurich, Berlin and Paris undergrounds is a playful gesture that, like photography, is a way to modify these found documents into something of his own.  


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