"Moving the house piece by piece... The land never belonged to me — Neither I belong to the land..."
L. Novakova, Saint-Jean-Port-Joli, June 2010
Lenka Novakova pulls apart the burnt remains of a house, piece by piece, rebuilding it in OBORO's exhibition space, reconstructing not only its architecture, but an entire landscape.
On the banks of the St. Lawrence River, having discovered the fire-ravaged house while doing a residency at Est-Nord-Est (Saint-Jean-Port-Joli), the artist made it her anchorage — a place from which to study the complex and subtle phenomena that manifest themselves through sky and water. Lenka Novakova took her post within the desolate structure. She contemplated the tides, the clouds, and the variations in light, deepening her understanding of the landscape and of those traces of human memory that survive.
This dialogue between river, sky and house is patiently documented and presented in the gallery. Within the reconstructed architecture, through its skeleton and interstices, she projects videos of the original landscape. Like a memory that envelops the building, the river's waters continue to ebb and flow as the light deepens into red. The changing dimensions of these natural phenomena echo the uncertain and ephemeral nature of human life. For Lenka Novakova this is a sensorial quest, as well as a meditation on memory and temporality.