State of Mind and Garbage Heaven installation view, 2016
State of Being
"Four years ago on a sunny day in a city dumpsite nearby, I encountered a surreal world." A solo exhibition of drawing, installation and sculpture by Robert Kananaj, four years in the making, comes to fruition.
I want to start on a personal note about the conception of “State of Being”: Four years ago on a sunny day in a city dumpsite nearby, I encountered a surreal world.
A huge barn collecting waste produced daily, vast and dark after the sunlight, air hard to breathe in the middle of summer. Overwhelmed, my camera handy, I took a few shots. Captured in the images - shooting beams of light from the open skylights, immense columns of sparkling airborne dust floating above a garbage dump site - Garbage Heaven.
Amid the mundane and important things of life, as one finds and can be found, ductwork sections in a local hardware store recently stopped me in my tracks and became lungs for the project of Garbage Heaven.
Amnion, a project three years in making which suggests that things are contained and contain at the same time. Endless bottles, empties, loaded with information, designs and shapes, released from duty of intended first use: now creating the walls of a grotesquely large Amnion, connected to a long umbilical cord of bottles fed by an eerie endless field of emptied medication bottles. The birth of our medicated society, but well-designed domesticated society.
Objects in their own state, each as a state of being of its own. Burned-out overworked ideas, overworked or overthought: a towering burned wooden nesting place for a burned generation.
Drawings and sculpture: each contemplative as thought, as a journey, observing, tracing endlessly, obsessive and repetitive mark-making echoed in each a labyrinth of situated State of Being.
Robert Kananaj is a sculptor, director of RKGcontemporary, based in Toronto.