P. Roch Smith got’em, got ’em, need ’em

By January 3, 2018Exhibitions

January 6th – 28th, 2018

Opening Reception: January 13th, 2-5 PM

Q & A: Sunday, January 28th, 2 PM

P. Roch Smith’s got ’em, got ’em, need ’em recreates and reimagines the entire set of 1975 – 76 O-Pee-Chee NHL hockey cards. Each of the 395 individually framed cards in the set has been digitally altered in terms of colour, scale, and legibility.

The title refers to the verbal cues associated with sorting through another person’s collection — a mantra that would signal a potential trade. Growing up in the 1970s, collecting a complete set of hockey cards was the Everest of childhood ambitions. In his choice of the 1975-76 season, Smith has sought to fill the voids of a childhood collection by creating his personal “complete set”.

Collectively, these images continue Smith’s longtime exploration of memory and object. They are positioned at the intersection of sport and play as a trigger for questioning the creative act — of mass culture and its relationship to contemporary art. The installation examines the notion of what it means to be complete and the role of process as it relates to production of artifacts.

Smith is less interested in the idea of a collectible as a commodity than other questions: what drives the compulsion to collect something in the first place? How does one decide what to collect? When does one thing cease to be merely an object, and become part of a collection of other things?

Jean Baudrillard argues that “all objects in a collection become equivalent, thanks to that process of passionate abstraction we call possession. Further, a simple object can never be enough: invariably there will be a whole succession of objects…”  As an object maker, Smith both acquires things and produces pieces that make their way into other people’s collections. Perhaps, therefore, it is the concept of worth that may only be seen through absence.

P. Roch Smith was born and raised on Vancouver Island and currently lives and maintains a studio in Toronto. Working primarily within the realm of sculpture, Smith also generates installations, paintings, and drawings as part of his artistic output. Smith received a BFA from the Emily Carr Institute of Art and Design and an MFA from York University. He has taught classes at the University of Waterloo, ECIAD, and York University. He has been a member of loop Gallery since 2014, and currently manages and operates the bronze and aluminum foundry at York University.

Smith has exhibited internationally and is included in private as well as public collections in Canada and the United States. His sculptures are available through the Oeno Gallery located in Prince Edward County, ON.

For more information, visit rochsmith.com, or visit his pages on instagram (@rochsmith) and twitter (@_rochsmith).

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