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Luanne Martineau
From April 17th 1999 to May 22nd 1999
Hogan's Alley

"Hogan’s Alley" is the name of a tenement described in R.F. Outcault’s The Yellow Kid (1895-1898), a comic-strip based on immigrant ghetto life. It is a part of an ongoing work which takes the idea of excerpt into abstraction. The series of Spiritmaster drawings exhibited here are studies for hypothetical sculptures, constructed with isolated and reconfigured samples of mark-making and periphery detail found in previous works.

The final image is produced with a portable Spiritmaster, a pre-Xerox gestetner that creates an image with a carbon master that degenerates shortly before or after the 20th copy, making a slightly varied image with each successive reproduction.


With this ongoing series of works, I’m using the cast-offs of archival gathering, scrambling mark samples from appropriated sources with my own doodles. The bronzes are an example of this doodling by-product… abstracted three-dimensional approximations of loosely-representational two-dimensional sketches.



My interest in narrative and the archival impulse stems from its status as the common factor within discourses of parentage and genesis. The bind of my practice is the absence of a functional narrative and how this absence continuously collapses all but momentary coherence. I locate my interest at the moment when the text steps from its primary role as a communication tool, and slips between binary opposition – neither functioning as a subject nor as an exercise in anti-narrative.

Born in 1970, Luanne Martineau followed Intermedia Studies at NSCAD in Halifax and is a graduate of the Alberta College of Art and Design, Calgary. In 1995 she completed an M.F.A. in Fine Arts at UBC in Vancouver. Drawing from R.F. Outcault’s comic-strip The Yellow Kid (1895-1898), and using various mediums (water-colour, drawing, ceramic and bronze sculpture), this young artist has created a complex body of work based on the absence and deconstruction of the meaning of narrative. This includes “Ryan's Arcade” presented at Or Gallery, Vancouver (1997) and Mercer Union, Toronto (1998), “Love Letters to the Shiv Artist” at Struts Gallery, Sackville and Eye Level Gallery, Halifax (1998), “Hogan's Alley” currently at Optica and “McFadden's Flats” shortly at Gallery 101 in Ottawa and Truck Gallery in Calgary. She has also participated in several group shows, among them: “House of Cruelty” in Columbus, Ohio (1995), “Residue” at Truck Gallery, Calgary (1996), “Montréal-Calgary” at Galerie Circa, Montréal (1998) and “AFA: Selections from the Collection” at the Illingworth Kerr Gallery, Calgary (1999). Luanne Martineau lives and works in Calgary.