On Building Soil

Morley Shayuk

November 16 - December 22, 2018

On Building Soil 1
On Building Soil 2
On Building Soil 3
On Building Soil 4
A Late Frost
Seedpod Expression
Red, Yellow, Blue with Support Being
Moth of Certainty
Thank you Garden, I’m Sorry for Everything
Action Energy with Floret
Everything Mulch
Awake into Darkness
The Nitrogen Fixer
Invasive Species
Summer Flowers, Come to Life
High Expectation
Receding Landscape
Still Life with Window

On Building Soil 1

On Building Soil 1 , 2018
installation view

In 2016 Morley Shayuk relocated to a derelict farm east of Toronto with the aim of transforming the property into a small organic farm. In On Building Soil Shayuk explores Back-to-Earth narratives and employs the farm as a distinct setting for a new body of work.

On the farm, expectations recede as unexpected environmental cleanup projects arise. The ongoing removal of buried iron, plastic and garbage hampers progress and reveals a darker truth just below the surface. On Building Soil is an acknowledgement of the positive and negative ways that soil structure can be established and highlights the need for sustainable farming practices.

In On Building Soil Shayuk addresses conflicting realities on the farm by contrasting the potential for conservation and habitat-building with the depressing task of undoing previously damaging farm habits. The ongoing transformation of the property and insights gleaned while living on the farm have become the inspiration for the current work.

In his last exhibition,English Breakfast ( 2016), themes of nature became ornamental, objectified and controlled through experimental and time-based working methods, reflecting the qualities of conventional farming that directed the artist to a point in his practice where he consistently expresses and challenges consumptive behaviors. On Building Soil is Morley Shayuk’s fifth show with Paul Petro Contemporary Art