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Luke Painter. Animation still from The Teasers and the Tormentors, 2016.

Luke Painter: The Teasers and the Tormentors

April 28 - June 17, 2018

The animation The Teasers and the Tormentors, which started in 2016, is a consistent work in progress with Painter adding sections to it every year.  The work references set designs from 20th century theatre, film productions and illusion magic shows through the use of virtual 3D animation tools. The title refers to the vertical and horizontal borders on a theatre stage that are adjustable and change the size and shape of the stage viewer window. The animation depicts a stage where a number of sets are represented including Josef Svoboda’s scenography designs for Romeo and Juliet, Robert Wiene’s The Cabinet of Dr Caligari, Tim Burton’s Beetlejuice, Dario Argento’s Suspiria and the illusion-based technique called Pepper’s Ghost (developed by John Henry Pepper) used in amusement parks and theatres. These sets are constructed and transformed, only to be deconstructed and replaced by other sets from the 20th century. The work travels across different time periods, exploring the tensions between competing images. Through the use of mirrors in the 3D animation, the viewer’s perspective shows the action outside of the camera frame which becomes a reflexive technique that allows the viewer a sense of awareness of the space that is beyond the set. This current iteration of the work includes new sections based on pre-cinema illusion magic shows and techniques.

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Toronto-based artist Luke Painter works in a variety of media including sculptural installation, drawing and painting as well as animation. Recent exhibitions of his work include the solo exhibitions Modern Wand at Cambridge Galleries (2017) and The Teasers and the Tormentors at Galerie Clark in Montreal (2016). Group exhibitions include Ways of Something at the Whitney Museum of American Art (2016) and Five Years of Contemporary Canadian Drawing at the Sudbury Art Gallery (2016). Painter was recently nominated in 2018 for the K.M. Hunter Mid-Career Artist Award through the Ontario Arts Council.  He has received grants from Canada Council for the Arts, the Ontario Arts Council and the Toronto Arts Council and has been reviewed by Canadian Art, Border Crossings, The Globe and Mail and was included in Carte Blanche Vol 2 – Painting, a national survey of Canadian painters. Painter is an Associate Professor at OCAD University in Toronto.

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