OPEN STUDIO: ARTIST-IN-RESIDENCE
AUG 11 to SEPT 14, 2019
ABOUT THE ARTISTS / GESIG ISAAC + JAMIE ROSS
Gesig Isaac is a multidisciplinary Mi’gmaq artist from Listuguj First Nation. Her work focuses on the themes of cultural reclamation through intergenerational transmission of traditional craft. She hopes to build an artist-centred community that is invested in passing on knowledge while also experimenting with contemporary mediums. Her work is centred around plants and the natural world. She has studied plant medicine both formally and informally and hopes to investigate further the narrative potential between her knowledge and plants and her artistic practice. Gesig lives in Fredericton.
Jamie Ross is a contemporary artist, diviner and witch. His award-winning video works have screened on four continents. He works as a professional card diviner, a consulting spellworker and as the chaplain for men incarcerated in federal prisons in Quebec. Creating and documenting queer community based on a sincere engagement with magic, grafting himself onto the rich artistic traditions of his cultural and biological ancestors is fundamental. He lives in Tiohtià:ke / Mooniyang (Montreal).
Something about violets Jamie said, grief support
Bitter-tasting they were, and on brie, which today I do not
Even and picked from a cemetery
The One With Violets In Her Lap
by Aisha Sasha John:
I never published
Was about sexual violence also I didn’t think—listen:
I am supposed to take the laptop into the bedroom and
The lemon-wedged shaped floor cushion
From the living room Zoom studio back
To its place beside my bed where the light
Pours in salmon
TO EXPERIENCE SADNESS AS ITSELF, I wrote
FOUR A.M. ARUGULA
THIRTY TWO PERCENT TONIGHT
In a famous episode from the history of psychoanalysis, Wilfred Bion took his analysand Samuel Beckett to a talk by Carl Jung. The latter referred to a woman patient of his who felt she had never been born. Beckett turned to Bion and exclaimed: “That’s me!”
Toxic soil/ ok
They were spicy
Like house fraught langue bear
Or what you would call the action of leaves
As the wind is known
Lilac, dead and diminishing perfume
I have ripped them from their branches
For me the question of curse is why
A tangled, humping cedar and dry
And is that sage on velvet?
Peeling paint: are drawn people Dutch?
This is purple
And that is grey
This is lilac
And that is slate
Ultimately it is
It is separate
I was told you could right someone’s name on a piece of paper and put it in the freezer
We are talking about
And all the stars were just like little fish
You should, yes, learn
But how did they get crossed?
A person guides five trunks into the shape of persons roiling
Now let’s talk about that dog: “I eat Dutch children”
I told Alexa I refuse to learn a single other European language least of all the goofy ones
Okay, brine. Okay three stunts I mean stumps
Speaking of grief who cut them?
And why is the tree so dry?
Winnicott makes similar reference to a woman analysand “near to the end of a long analysis”: “She contains no true experiences,” he writes, “She has no past. She starts with 50 years of wasted life, but at last she feels real, and therefore she now wants to live.”
A teaching which Reb Zale translated into this image: “You think it is the bird which is free. Wrong: it is the flower.” And Reb Elat into this motto: “Love your ties to their last splendor, and you will be free.”
The last time I was flowered I got cut
I guess I have to find what is hidden pertaining to housekeeping and dance
And that I asked and asked and asked
That I went into the wilderness alone and both of you were seeing me there
And both of you were watching me in the wilderness
As a centaur it is painful to be witnessed feeding
Or wanting to eat
Beeswax oozing past an untended edge
To risk extra words in my aphorism
The anthropologist vs the ethnobotanist
Which white man is more annoying
He purged purple phosphorous and scorpions
Imbibe ward provide protect
There definitely has to be a drum
There has to be, there has to be, there has to be a drum
Like how you hold your carpet
Curled into itself in a turquoise tarp
I think you could go and
You could go and look
We decided against a curse.
In the bowl, it's Gesig's hands. With the seeds, it's my hands.
We created a spell with plants for wakefulness and truthtelling -- things that were common like mint and coffee were some of the ingredients as well as things a little less common.
We stuffed little handfuls of our powder under carpets in his hotel.
That's an old cedar that was planted by William Cornelius van Horne on his cottage island which is now a bad museum to his "legacy."
Instead, we wanted to apply a wakefulness or a truth serum to the strange buildings so they would do the talking --
A British adage: "She who cannot curse, cannot cure; she who cannot hex, cannot heal."