Love is not only a noun, it is touch and it is vision and it is also a verb. Love is the action here. This is the condition of making my stuff.* It is an act of will, conscious or subconscious, to record, place, and connect. I carry my camera with me everywhere. It is my devotion. It calms me to record and share information about my world. These small prints get shuffled around and held, they are by necessity concrete and analog.
Like gathering proof, I also keep scraps of other evidence from place and time. Papers, fabrics, bags, feathers, insect’s wings. The beloved pieces and pictures together become a song lyric or notes for something I might be too afraid to say out loud. Maybe these are stories, but really they are more like poems. These strung together images attempt to do the work of words. In the same way that a poem brings together what is scattered, I hope that these photographs will mirror this labor.
Poetry makes language care because it renders everything intimate. This intimacy is the result of the poem’s labor, the result of the bringing-together-into-intimacy of every act and noun and event and perspective to which the poem refers. There is often nothing more substantial to place against the cruelty and indifference of the world than this caring.
Then she pushed the board right up and wrote in large letters, bangles jangling in the silence, the words Look Upon The World With Love. Then she sat down at the table.
Write that down, she said, write it all down.
-Mary Manning, October 13, 2018
John Berger, And Our Faces, My Heart, Brief as Photos, 1984
Ali Smith, “The World With Love,” from Free Love and Other Stories, 1995
* thanks to Yvonne Rainer, from “statement” in Yvonne Rainer: Work
CANADA is pleased to present Love by Mary Manning, our first solo exhibition with the artist. Mary Manning (b. 1972, Alton, IL) lives and works in New York City. She began taking photos of her everyday encounters while living in San Francisco in the 90’s. Her subjects include dance performances, the plastic partition between street and inside a bodega, trees, lovers, plastic bags. She weaves together the invisible relationships that happen between the visible subjects. Her book Blueprint, JMS Press, was published in 2018 to coincide with a solo exhibition at Little Sister, Toronto. Other recent solo shows include those at Cleopatra’s, Brooklyn; and Jackie Klempay, Brooklyn. She has been in group shows at Situations, NY; Andrew Edlin Gallery, NY; The First and Only East Hampton Biennial, NY; and the CANADA booth at Frieze New York 2017 curated by Marc Hundley. Peradam Press published her first book, First Impressions of Greece, in 2014. She has run the website Unchanging Window since 2006.
Opening Reception: Friday, October 26, 6-8 PM