David Gifford, Shadow Puncho
May 13 – June 17, 2006
Opening reception: May 12 @ 8PM
Discussion Event & Performance with Artist: May 20, 2PM @ Access
Victoria artist David Gifford is sometimes known as the magician who says FANTASTICO! Gifford’s creative practice includes such diverse materials as ice, jade, marble, and magic. His sculptural installation will transform the gallery into an unusual cabinet of curiosities. His unique strategies as an artist combine elements of old-world artistry with a keen understanding of contemporary culture. The exhibition will reference contents of childhood pockets and a collection of sympathetic magical weapons, talismans, and disguises. Prepare to be amazed as this exhibition comes to Vancouver. Don’t miss the surveillance bee hive, floating equestrian statuary, jade gummy bear, and chicken beak museum. This artist and magician channels a mysterious suggestive confusion – the kind used to cure disease, secure love, and offer protection in battle while predicting showers, smoke, and pollen. You can even touch it!
David Gifford was raised by geese but eventually shed his wild man persona and assumed the air of a gentleman. He began to study magic after sustaining a fall from a trapeze. After attending the Ontario college of Art he went on to study in Florence, Italy and later received a BFA from the Nova Scotia College of Art and Design, and an MFA from the University of Victoria. In 2002 Gifford co-founded the Ministry of Casual Living and was the director/curator there from 2002 – 2004. He has been an artist-in-residence at Sir Wilfred Grenville College in Cornerbrook, Newfoundland; the Confederation Centre, Charlottetown, Prince Edward Island; and the Klondike Institute of Art and Culture in Dawson City, Yukon. Gifford is a beekeeper and travels his magic show across the Canadian North by train, bush plane, and freighter canoe.