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CRAM International

A Terrible Joy

Carolyn Wren

May 25 – June 26, 2012

Opening Friday, June 1, 7 - 10 pm

"Falls", ink on pattern paper, 48' x 60", 2011

A Terrible Joy

Using old images from 19th century etchings, Wren plays with the ideas of veneration of the landscape and art itself. Like all museum experiences, the viewer enters and is hushed by the reverence and reverie of art. Similarly, the same charged visual experience is felt when looking at a luminous vista. This conflation of landscape, art, and spirituality is not new; it is borrowed from philosophers and artists who have been studying this phenomenon for centuries. Yet Wren adds a new dimension to the mix; she subtly introduces the human element through her choice of material. The pattern pieces used for sewing are the base on which she draws and prints. The landscape, at first glance, appears to be untouched; nature stands alone, wild, and untamed in all its glory. Upon closer observation, the trace of the body is revealed, folded into the landscape through the use of the contour lines in the pattern pieces. In the sublime, humanity stands in the centre of the landscape to observe nature's beauty and horror. Without the body (and its brain), there would be nature; the sublime exists only in the observer. In Immanuel Kant's Critique of Judgment of 1790, he states, "when we speak of the sublime in nature we speak improperly; properly speaking, sublimity can be attributed merely to our way of thinking..." Through the omission of the figure, Wren underscores the power of the landscape in all its beauty and terror. In some of her pieces the viewer responds by yearning for days gone by or hoping for a better future.


The CRAMplex

24 James Street, 2nd floor
St. Catharines, Ontario

: by appointment & when the sandwich board is out

between The Office Tap & Grill and Christophers Magazine and Cigar Store

CRAM International is a growing concern...


Tobey C. Anderson

We are currently re-tooling the CRAM websites....

CRAM International is an artist collective operating Canada's smallest alternative multi-purpose art facility. Organized on a benevolent dictatorial management model, CRAM Gallery is funded by collective members, sponsors, patrons, partners, and the director. Since 2006, CRAM has encouraged and promoted local investment in original art and advocated for local contemporary artists.

Since 2007 CRAM International has been in a unique and growing relationship of cultural exchange with the artists of Taller Cultural "Luis Diaz Oduardo" in Santiago de Cuba that has artists from both counties participating in exhibitions, mural events, print projects, and artist residencies. CRAM International is the sole Canadian representative of the artists in the Cuban Artist Exchange and maintains a selection of original Cuban prints and paintings.

CRAM Press works with artists to publish Original Print Editions and Original Limited Edition Artist Bookworks. Initiated in 2009, CRAM Press is Niagara's only professional print workshop. CRAM Press and Taller Cultural are developing an annual international print symposium to be launched in January 2013.

The Disco Gallery is Niagara's underground art boutique and micro gallery with a focus on emerging artists, unorthodox mediums, and inspired events since December 2009. We are located in the CRAMplex at 24 James Street and are partners in crime with Cram International. Please feel free to circulate this information widely.

For further info, interviews, or photos, please reply via email or call Marinko at (905) 937-3021.