The Armory Show
March 3 – 6, 2016
Daniel Faria Gallery is pleased to present the work of Douglas Coupland at The Armory Show, 2016.
Among the many characteristics of his practice, Coupland is known for his re-contextualization of contemporary cultural trends and how they are articulated by the latest technology. His work at The Armory Show addresses larger societal obsessions by revealing the artist’s personal ones. These examinations are divided in his new bodies of work: Deep Face & Trash Vortex.
Deep Face explores Facebook’s recent corporate initiative to identify all faces posted to the website by using facial recognition algorithms — a somewhat intrusive proposition, but one that will be implemented, regardless. Facebook’s proposition is a small taste of the retrograde privacy invasion that will typify much of the near and distant future. Deep Face presents portraits that recall photographs by Thomas Ruff or screen shots by Andy Warhol that have been obscured through scientific camouflage and deflection techniques. The camouflage is painted as opposed to digitally applied overtop the large, high-resolution photos to create images that are neither masks nor generic abstraction. They dually conceal and technologically reveal our identity, representing the state of in-between-ness that pervades the modern mind.
In Trash Vortex Coupland drips coats of toxic paint onto vintage globes. The focal point of where the paint is applied lies directly over the Pacific Trash Gyre, a garbage patch consisting of plastics and other particulates that have been cast off — ejected from society, but still very much present on the earth. By way of ocean currents, this debris accumulates, resulting in the Gyre’s formation. These colourful globes become meditations on the seductive, but cruel beauty of the man-made world, and of its increasingly observable unsustainability.
Douglas Coupland is a graduate of the Emily Carr Institute of Art and Design, as well as the Hokkaido College of Art and Design in Sapporo, Japan and the Instituto Europeo di Design in Milan, Italy. Coupland’s work has been exhibited in numerous international group shows and has completed several public commissions, including the Terry Fox Memorial in Vancouver and Monument to the War of 1812 in Toronto. Coupland’s first major survey exhibition, everywhere is anywhere is anything is everything opened at the Vancouver Art Gallery in 2014 and travelled to the Royal Ontario Museum and the Museum of Contemporary Canadian Art, both in Toronto, in winter 2015. In the fall of 2015, Coupland had a solo show, Bit Rot, at the Witte de With Center for Contemporary Art in Rotterdam. Bit Rot will travel to Museum Villa Stuck, Munich in the fall of 2016. Coupland’s work is currently on view at Whitechapel gallery as part of the exhibition Electronic Superhighway curated by Omar Kholeif. His work can be found in the collections of the University of British Columbia (Vancouver), Glenbow Museum (Calgary), Agnes Etherington Art Centre (Kingston), the Albright Knox (Buffalo), and the Confederation Centre (Charlottetown). Coupland was made an Officer of the Order of Canada in 2014.