Ian Johnston’s “Fine Line: Check Check” invites viewers into the centre of four large projection screens. (Jensen Edwards/Grand Forks Gazette)

Sink into the spaces at Gallery 2’s spring exhibitions

The three new installations ask viewers to reimagine their relationships with space, landscapes

In a word, Gallery 2’s latest exhibitions are immersive.

Curator Tim van Wijk has once again hauled out the facility’s technology to project an installation called “Fine Line: Check Check” on four giant screens while bathing its viewers in the sounds of the film snippets and underlined with a musical score. According to the installation’s description, artist Ian Johnston’s turn to tech “stemmed from the consideration of an obsessive behaviour familiar to most, namely our highly emotionally charged relationship to screens and digital devices.”

Next door in the Fogg Gallery, artist Meghan Krauss reinforces that tense relationship we seem to have with devices and screens through a series of photos of highly photographed places in Canada and Iceland, presented in “Observer, Observed.” Sift through the layers of selfie-posing tourists and the display’s viewers too can find themselves lost in the layers of people they’re looking at. (It’s hard to tell, as a viewer, if you’re looking at the people, or through the people to the beautiful landscapes – both are equally intriguing).

Krauss got the idea when she moved to Banff and saw the masses jockeying for the best angles. Then, she began compressing a series of photos of the same place to amplify the crowds, giving the viewer the impression of being amongst the fray.

Luckily, out of the beautiful chaos from both visiting exhibitions, Gallery 2 patrons are able to escape the crowd in the West Gallery, where van Wijk has pulled works from the gallery’s permanent collection that showcase the different ways in which we perceive landscapes.

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Meghan Krauss, centre, talks through her photo series with Gallery 2 visitors on Jan. 31. Krauss has hidden herself taking photos in each one of the panels on display. (Jensen Edwards/Grand Forks Gazette)

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