Rivers and Skies – My First House

© Lenka Novakova-Anjo, 2010

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© Lenka Novakova-Anjo, 2010

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Rivers and Skies – My First House

Exhibition September 18 – October 23, 2010

Saturday, September 18, 2010 at 5 pm

Artist Talk
Saturday, September 18, 2010 at 4:30 pm

"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.

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Lenka Novakova

Lenka Novakova was born in the Czech Republic, received her undergraduate degree from the Pennsylvania Academy of Fine Art, Philadelphia, and MFA from Concordia University in Montreal. Her practice is concerned with an ephemeral poetic quality, a moment of recreation and reflective thought through constructed environments, simple technologies and moving light, with crossover in cinema and theatre technologies. She has been recipient of numerous fellowships and awards, and has an active exhibition record in Canada and abroad.