Regina Clay: Worlds in the Making
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INTERVIEW

Video
Victor Cicansky
"Prairie Waterworks"
Victor Cicansky | Prairie Waterworks
Run Time: 2:34 | File size: 5.9 MB
Transcript

Here’s another work in this series, it’s called Prairie Waterworks and what’s interesting about this piece is, it’s probably a good year. There’s lots of water. This contraption here is a windmill, which most farms had on the prairies to pump water. Water was always an issue for farmers as it would be for gardeners. This was a good year. If you look inside the piece, there’s a tub full of water with ducks swimming in it. There’s a pail full of water, and the whole thing has a liveliness about it, including the little plastic flowers growing out of pots. So when you’ve got water, prairie soil is great, you can grow great things. This particular piece is one that went to Paris, I believe, in 1973 at the exhibition of Canadian artists at the Museum of Modern Art in Paris. For me, it was interesting to have a work like this sent to Paris, because Paris was the art capital of the world. That’s were you learned about Impressionism, about Rodin, about Manet, Monet, and all the wonderful work that they created. And for me it was kind of interesting to send something that had a kind of goofiness about it like this, to be shown alongside the work of great masters of Impressionism, Expressionism, Fauvism, and that whole cultural history that you grow up with when you study art in Canadian universities. The idea here, of course, is you can play around with it, you could move pieces around. There’s sand in there, and I often imagined what the reaction of Parisians would be - at least the Parisians who came to Museums who saw something like this. They must have thought that the artist who created this was on some kind of special drink or smoke or something, but it was just part of my own reality, recreating it in a way that I found playful and interesting, and I guess the operative word in this series and some of the others is playfulness.


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