Aleesa Cohene I Know You Know
14 September 2014 – 4 January 2015

Oakville Galleries in Gairloch Gardens

Over the past decade, Vancouver-born artist Aleesa Cohene has achieved renown for her deft work with film footage, building nuanced characters, contexts and relationships from existing film and video material. While her earliest works took the form of single-channel videos, recent years have seen her practice expand to encompass multiple channels, painted environments, scents, and—as seen in this exhibition—sculpture, sound and dance.

Throughout this evolution in her practice, Cohene's commitment to the composite—to culling a disparate array of existing material and shaping it into new forms—has remained steadfast. Now extending her reach beyond cinema to mine content from philosophy, literature, personal relationships, and other realms, Cohene's composites operate more expansively, in terms of both form and substance.

For I Know You Know, the artist presents a complex network of narratives, objects and ideas bound by association. Each component of the show is the product of Cohene's distinct working method, in which she begins without a resolved outcome in place. Instead, a set of fixed rules govern her process, allowing the shape of what emerges to be dictated in large part by her source material's particular limits and rewards. Working with available materials in this way, Cohene draws our attention to the generative structures that create and sustain us—how we construct ourselves, our relationship to others and the world at large—as a means of prompting broader reflections on self-determination, affective politics and the future.