Canan Tolon’s paintings and installations serve as visual records of the passing of time. Each swipe captures the gesture as well as the memory of the gesture, now already in the past. Each panel appears to duplicate itself beyond any final tally, proliferating in the room.
Upon first glance, Tolon’s constructs evoke a sense of freedom in their repetition. They appear infinite, suggestive of vast open spaces, like the modern landscapes viewed out of a train window, or the documentary film reels from the mid- twentieth century. They draw us in, inviting our dreams and interpretations. In this momentary introspection, we contemplate our own histories.
Then, like the first day of any highly anticipated tomorrow, after the proverbial summer full of expectation…expecting things to change, to be different, to be new again, we are struck with a profound disillusionment, stranded in a place full of promise that never delivers. In a turn, the world of photographic familiarity Tolon has created collapses in on itself. — Amanda Krugliak, arts curator
This Institute for the Humanities original installation was made possible by the generosity of the 2012 Kidder Residency in the Arts. The installation is based on Canan Tolon’s observations and experiences during her time in Ann Arbor, and many of the materials used are salvage materials from her visits to Detroit architectural yards.