Bobbie Burgers Hybernation #8
Bobbie Burgers, Hybernation #8 (detail), 2020/21. Photo: Rachel Topham, 2021.

Bobbie Burgers: The Hard Work of Spring

About the exhibition

The West Vancouver Art Museum is pleased to present this exhibition featuring new work by Bobbie Burgers, including two new series of works on paper and two free-standing sculptures. Forced to create on a smaller and in a more contained way during the initial COVID lockdown, Burgers turned to paper and less paint to continue her practice at home. On her return to her studio, she continued to work with paper far more frequently, not just as a substrate, but in her collage and sculpture too.
 
These new works on paper and sculptures highlight the relationship between delicacy and mass, creating a sense of tension. Burgers’ recent woodblock prints, also included in this exhibition, offer a culmination in these material experiments: while they appear to be sketch-like in their form, they are in fact, incredibly precisely rendered.
 
Over time, since her early work in the mid 1990s, Burgers’ subjects have largely focused on flowers. Drawing inspiration from her own garden, her early still-life work evolved into an ever-more abstract exploration of flowers that she captured in various stages of life: from fresh to petal-less. The works exhibited here are so abstracted as to be unrecognizable as florals. Not only has the experience of the last 18 months permitted her an opportunity to explore new media, but it has also precipitated the ultimate departure in the form of her subjects.
 
The “Hard Work of Spring” is a poetic phrase that is often employed to describe the process an animal undergoes when emerging from hibernation. For an artist so accustomed to capturing nature in all of its stages, it seems a fitting way to characterize her recent work and experience as an artist. The works exhibited here display an emergence from hibernation, from the constrictions of materials, and from representational forms.
 
About the artist

Bobbie Burgers is a West Vancouver-based painter whose work intimately examines the natural processes of decay, transformation and metamorphosis. While florals have always been her primary source of inspiration, her unique understanding of their physical composition and metaphorical connotations have allowed her to push the classical subject to near abstraction. In addition to canvas, Burgers' expressive mark-making and textural surfaces extend to collage and sculpture. Burgers has exhibited her work internationally including in Sweden and China. Burgers is represented in Toronto, Vancouver and San Francisco.

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