Magali Hébert-Huot | Les Grandes Étendues
Hamiltonian Gallery is pleased to present a new body of work by Magali Hébert-Huot, in collaboration with Tommy Bobo. Les Grandes Étendues will open with a reception on Friday, May 25th, from 7 - 9 pm. The artists will be in attendance.
French for “vast expanse”
In French, “étendues” is a word that was frequently used to describe the expansive and unknown wilds that voyageurs encountered while trekking through what would eventually be known as Canada. The experience of exploring the unfamiliar with no human contact for months on end is metaphorically re-created in Magali Hébert-Huot’s newest body of work, Les Grandes Étendues. Inspired by the intense stamina, resolve and uncertainty that was demanded of French Canada’s first explorers, Hébert-Huot illustrates, through a playfully dark installation, the ways in which the human condition requires similar fortitude.
Through a mix of humor and foreboding, in Les Grandes Étendues, Magali Hébert-Huot banishes her audience to the far reaches of an unforgiving wasteland in the dead of winter. Hébert-Huot creates a series of mise-en-scènes that exist in a fragmentary state: ice floes, piles of chopped wood and a bizarre cabin in the woods establish a disjointed sense of place and time. Created out of cast plaster, foam and wax, the playful and strange objects in Hébert-Huot’s vignettes allude to an absent human presence. This notion is reiterated through a logbook. Inspired by the logbooks of explorers, the journal, written in collaboration with artist Tommy Bobo, places viewers within Les Grandes Étendues as 21st century pioneers who are discovering new terrain as if for the first time. Acting as a trusty guide through this desolate place, Hébert-Huot and Bobo’s logbook recounts, in both banal and poetic detail, the daily activities and events that have led us here.
Magali Hébert-Huot (b. 1987, Québec City, Qc, Canada), completed her BFA at Emily Carr University of Art and Design in 2012 and received her MFA at Maryland Institute College of Art – Rinehart School of Sculpture in 2015. She has a rigorous studio practice, investigating and synthesizing her interests in sculpture, printmaking, architecture and history. The representations she creates are situated amid languages, cliché and idiosyncrasy, believability and disillusionment, sincerity and irreverence. Hebert-Huot was a 2016 Royal British Society of Sculptors RBS Bursary Award and the 2015 recipient of the International Sculpture Center Outstanding Student Achievement in Contemporary Sculpture Award. Recent exhibition include Vox XIII: Are ‘Friends’ Electric? at Vox Populi, Philadelphia PA (2017); A Place In Place of, Hamiltonian Gallery, Washington, DC (2016) and The Sondheim Semi-Finalist Exhibition at Maryland Institute College of Art, Baltimore, MD (2016). She lives and works in Québec City, Canada.
Living and working in Washington, DC, artist Tommy Bobo (b. 1983, Aiken, SC) is deeply interested in the physicality of light and sound. Through the use of materials that disperse and magnify, light becomes tangible and produces an experience for the viewer that is a balance between a science fair and the transcendent. Bobo holds a BFA in Expanded Media Art from the University of Kansas (2006) and an MFA in Studio Art from the Mount Royal School of Art at the Maryland Institute College of Art (2014). His work has shown in Baltimore, MD and Washington, DC, and has been reviewed in the Washington City Paper and the Washington Post. He has taught art and design at American University and the Maryland Institute College of Art.