FIELDWORK | BIRCH COVE RANGER
Eyelevel Gallery announces Jennifer MacLatchy as Fieldwork's Local Artist, beginning her 8 week residency in the fall.
ABOUT THE ARTIST
Jennifer MacLatchy received an M.A. in Women and Gender Studies from Mount Saint Vincent University. Her areas of research include Queer Theory, Performance Art, Canadian Studies, Landscape, Art History, Queer Ecologies and De-colonial Theory. Performance and art as research was the focus of MacLatchy's masters thesis and is the subject of her PhD. MacLatchy understands the methodology of performance as research as a way to test theory in the spaces of the real world, to enact it in cultural and environmental landscapes, and to focus on the places where theory then falls apart—and to use this falling apart as materials for art as well as for shaping a new version of the theory.
BIRCH COVE RANGER
Birch Cove Ranger (2013 to present) is a personal project in which Jennifer MacLatchy documents the happenings of the Birch Cove Lakes, in Halifax, Nova Scotia. It aims to question the construct of a separation between civilization and wilderness, as well as the role that landscape plays in our relationship to place.
During the course of the residency, MacLatchy will use performance as a practice of embodied research. Strongly influenced by Dempsey and Millan’s Lesbian National Parks and Services (ongoing since 1997), she will perform as the self-appointed Birch Cove Ranger, guardian of the Birch Cove Lakes. Acknowledging the colonial implications of taking on this role as a white woman of settler descent, her research questions not only gender and sexuality in the iconic role of the park ranger, but also the complexity of "preserving" land, while simultaneously claiming ownership of it.
Fieldwork is a platform for artists to conduct and present research as it relates to their practice in a setting outside of an exhibitionary complex. Initiated by Wes Johnston in 2013, this is the second iteration of the project. Fieldwork aligns with Eyelevel Gallery's itinerant programming model, prioritizing practice over professionalism, and providing multiple access points to contemporary art. This residency has received support from Canada Council for the Arts, Arts Nova Scotia and the city of Halifax.