What Is and What Was

What Is and What Was by Jackie Partridge
(Artist books: four hand cut atlases, wooden table
and wooden stools, stools 14”x 17.75” and table 46”x 42”, 2018). Courtesy of the artist.

What Is and What Was

by Jackie Partridge

What Is and What Was includes four wooden stools circling a table inviting viewers to sit down and view four altered North American and Canadian atlases. As the pages turn houses are removed from the page showing the changing landscape both through the altering of cut-outs and the found object of the atlas continuing to outdate itself.

The artist says about this work:
Coming from a small town and a family heritage of farming, I have visually seen the land developing over time. I have seen and felt both the impacts of climate change and urbanization within my community.

As a mixed media artist, I am interested in expressing the rural landscape in an abstract and poetic way through drawings and installations. Through the transformation of often everyday items like jeans and maps; cutting, twisting, soaking, tearing become performed repeated actions to the objects. The process of the work becomes important in communicating the transformation of the land. I play with the relationship of what is fragile versus what is strong in material choices. The landscape remains delicate due to human impact yet strong for the life growing on it. How can we better protect the land we care about?

What Is and What Was (detail) by Jackie Partridge. Courtesy of the artist.

Everyday objects in our lives are embedded with meaning and filled with memories of a past life left behind. What happens when the function is stripped away from something? Is it still the same object, or does it morph and hold a new identity? I wished time would slow down. When you linger, moments of unexpected can happen. I begin to notice things, to see changes even within a small patch of grass. When I’m outside I can stop and appreciate the small details and make comparisons to what was. I can hang onto moments through both photographs and memory.

My work embodies a sense of time and many projects imply a sense of infinity. Time relates to an infinite series of alterations in an environment that make up our daily existence. The landscape itself acts as an archive retaining all changes it faces.

About the artist:
Jackie Partridge holds an MFA in Fibres and Material Practices from Concordia University and an Honours BFA in Painting and Drawing and Honours Bachelor of Education from Lakehead University in Thunder Bay, Ontario.  She has exhibited across Canada and received grants, awards and residencies for her work. The artist lives and works in Huntsville, Ontario.

What Is and What Was
by Jackie Partridge
Artist Books: four hand cut atlases
Wooden table (46″x42″) and wooden stools (17.75″x14.75″)
Jackie Partridge, Huntsville, Ontario, 2018

For more information about this work, visit the artist’s website HERE.