Emily Grace Harrison’s raucous paintings and sculptures present the artist as a sampler of imagery, stories and styles, and someone for whom restlessness is central. To this end, both visual content and artistic practice are always in flux. She cuts and samples from a wide array of content, creating a visual vocabulary informed by emerging trends in popular culture. Her previous studies in anthropology, politics and religion often help determine the motifs and themes that subsequently manifest in her works.

Harrison’s ongoing experiments in the hybridity between sculpture and painting play into the material investigations that occur in the studio. 3-D objects may be manipulated as paint material, while spray paint and collage can become brush-marks. Constantly engaging the many possibilities of painting, she embraces a sense of freedom while moving between representation, abstraction and the picture-object dialectic.

Tying her practice together is Harrison’s near-constant use of hyper-saturated colour, which here operates as both a signifier of playfulness and as reference to the sensory-overload so common in popular culture.

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Born and raised on Hornby and Vancouver Islands, Emily Grace Harrison lived in Latin America and Eastern Canada before moving to Toronto. She graduated from OCADU’s Drawing and Painting program in 2017. She is the recent recipient of the Bonnie McComb Kreye Studio Residency and the Patricia Joy Alpert Award for emerging artists. 

Emily Harrison's studio (Winter, 2017)

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