Push The Boat Out
Updated: Aug 2, 2020
Alexandra Darbyshire Flood
Inaugural artist residency at The Shack
View across Lac Cole, Quebec, from the shore beneath The Shack.
The corridor of uncertainty
"I've already got a summer crush on The Shack at Lac Cole after a brief visit in June, where Jennifer Macklem and I began a discussion of how my residency could play out. I realised my time will be best spent making the experience entirely in situ, and see what free fall will bring to the table. I can see how this special piece of land sprinkled with pixie dust has a way of rendering me still, meditative and ready to roll the dice."
-Alexandra Darbyshire Flood
Alexandra Darbyshire Flood is a painter based in Ottawa Canada. She studied painting at the Ontario College of Art in Toronto, the National Academy School of Fine Arts in New York, and Turps Art School in London England. Alexandra has exhibited her paintings in solo and group shows in North America, and Europe, and has been recognized by national and international organisations with awards and honours for her work, including the Canada Council for the Arts and the Delphina Studios Trust, London, England. Flood is a 4 time nominee/longlist for the Sobey Award, and her work is in numerous private and public collections across Canada. alexandradarbyshire.com
Alexandra's current work is comprised of small encrusted, gloopy oil paintings on canvas and burlap, and a selection of collage work assembled from torn pieces of painted paper, often stitched together, with raw edges rather than the clean edged traditional picture plane. She varies the scale, materials, and approach to mark-making in this series to avoid a repetitive singular context, instead pointing to a sense of expansiveness and random playfulness with materials including sparkle dust, embroidery thread, and paint impressions made with bubble wrap. Her work is presented as a conversation around the unknown, often with one foot in abstraction, the other vaguely suggesting the world we live in. Some pieces could be interpreted as microscopic lifeforms, dystopic landscapes. Others have an otherworldly presence which flutters underneath the layers and texture of paint, created in the moment out of pure instinct. In turn, Alexandra invites the viewer to ponder these atmospheres where the point of origin isn’t clear.