Vessna Perunovich is in residency at LA CHAMBRE BLANCHE from May 10, 2022 to June 25, 2022. For this project, Perunovich intends to reflect on her own story of immigration to Canada from the former Yugoslavia in late 1980 by connecting her personal experiences to current global issues. Her work addresses migration, borders and settlement while considering her experience in a place of feminist practice and motherhood. A presentation of her residency work will take place on June 16, 2022 at 5 p.m.
For her residency at LA CHAMBRE BLANCHE, Vessna Perunovich wishes to question the ideas of home, dislocation, migration and mobility. The artist reflects on how we renegotiate place by confronting notions of vulnerability and sanctuary within the realm of the domestic space. The immigrant experience entails a continuous settling and resettling, a negotiation with belonging and identity, and constant reckoning with who we are and where we belong as an open and ongoing process. The experience of migration, constant adaptability and shifting perspectives fundamentally shape today's contemporary society. Externalizing the experience of the diasporic body, which shifts, mutates and remains indefinite, the work suggests that home is a flexible concept.
Thus, the artist will use found objects and second-hand materials. The studio/gallery will serve as a space for experimentation and development of different ideas related to this subject. The work proposed for the residency will revolve around constructing, arranging and combining objects and materials reflecting a provisional house, a place "in flux", suggesting the state of movement, dislocation, of innovation and adaptation. Found mundane household objects will be assembled in a web-like environment, made from tapes and rubber bands, intersecting, connecting and creating unexpected relationships and narratives. The work will transform space through an immersive installation that investigates the personal and universal experience of migration as a space of movement and immobility.
This project was financially supported by the Ontario Arts Council.
Vessna Perunovich is a Yugoslav born, Canadian artist, based in Toronto and Belgrade. The multilayered nature of her diasporic existence is reflected in her art practice, which is interdisciplinary, performative and transitory in form and content. Positioned in-between traditions and homelands, her work speaks to vulnerability and resilience by addressing issues at the heart of her practice: the politics of movement, identity, borders and settlement. During a career spanning over three decades, she has exhibited widely across Canada and abroad, taking part in a number of international Biennials and artist residencies. Her survey-touring exhibition Borderless (2009-2011) has traveled to Canada and Eastern Europe. Most recently she received OAC Chalmers Fellowship Grant (2019) for her project Politics of Exile and Compassion and participated in Risk Change project (2016-2020), a 4-year European Union program on mass migration.
Vessna Perunovich, Shifting Shelter, detail view, second hand table, black matt paint, demarcation tape, black elastic, hooks, dimensions variable, 2017. Photo credit: Boja Vasic.
Photo : Ivan Binet, 2022.