Lou Sheppard’s work aims to disrupt systems of power, considering in particular how bodies and identities are shaped by language. Working with the idea of the lacuna—the space between understanding in a translation—Sheppard uses graphic or conceptual scores to interrogate legibility. Taking as its structure the libretto of an opera, the installation at Access acts both a record and invocation of an action. My Fears of Tomorrow Are Melting Away is a score in five parts, situating the tasks of self-affirmation and self-actualization as the central labours of the individual in late capitalism.
LOU SHEPPARD is a Canadian artist working in interdisciplinary audio, performance and installation based practice. Of Irish, English and Scottish settler ancestry, Sheppard was raised on unceded Mi’Kmaq territory, and is based in K’jipuktuk/Halifax. Sheppard graduated from the Nova Scotia College of Art and Design in 2006 and then studied English and Education at Mount Saint Vincent University. In their recent practice Sheppard uses processes of translation and metaphor to interrogate structures of power in data and language. Their work is evidenced through installation, performance and score and often leads them to collaborate with other artists, including musicians, visual artists, and performing artists. Sheppard has exhibited work both in Canada and internationally, and was included in the first Antarctic Biennale and the Antarctic Pavilion in Venice. In 2017 Sheppard received the Emerging Atlantic Artist Award and in 2018 they were an international residency recipient of the Sobey Art Award for an upcoming residency at ISCP in Brooklyn. Sheppard has been an artist in residence at the Khyber Centre for the Arts, The Doris McCarthy Artist in Residence Program, Banff Centre for the Arts, Cité des Arts in Paris, in the Faculty of Education at McGill University, and at Struts Gallery and Faucet New Media Centre. My Fears of Tomorrow Are Melting Away is Lou’s first show in Vancouver.