Jason de Haan is a multidisciplinary artist living and working in Calgary. His work has been shown in group exhibitions in Canada, the USA, Ireland, Mexico, Sweden, Iceland and the UK. He has written that his work concerns itself with the conceptual, poetic and absurd, often manifesting itself as a combination in the forms of sculpture, installation, performance, drawing and bookworks. His projects, he says, always maintain a desire to achieve the positive. His first exhibition with Clint Roenisch, “Like Dust” (2009) brought together nine new works on paper, four sculptural works and an editioned set of photographs. These works, made of crystals, salt, marble, wood, metal, foil, “speculatively haunted” mirrors and brick, collectively suggested, often through slight gestures, various situations relating to time and material. Among other possibilities the exhibition proposed gazing into the grave plot directly above that of Marilyn Monroe’s; the containment of the Northern Lights; an energy generator composed of several dozen small selenite obelisks; and activity in outer space. Also notable was a new large work from the Salt Beard series which de Haan had previously built in Mexico and Iceland. These are mineral growths that are deposited onto the busts of various figures, based partly on the story of Rip van Winkle — the fictitious man who fell asleep under a tree for a number of years and awoke to an unfamiliar world. The Salt Beards aim to re-animate material, persona and style, allowing the sculpture to exist again as new while looking both forward and backward through time. The title, Like Dust, is therefore relative in one form or another to each individual work in the show, alluding to what, where and when we are, relative to the natural, the historical, the yet-to-happen and even to metaphysical realities.
Jason de Haan was included in Timeland: 2010 Alberta Biennial of Contemporary Art, curated by Richard Rhodes, at the Edmonton Art Gallery. In 2009 de Haan produced THE END IS NEAR HERE IS NEAR THE END, a collaborative installation with Scott Rogers for Nuit Blanche 2009. By co-opting the familiar fatalist phrase “The End is Near” the artists wryly explored notions of apocalypse, suggesting that doomsday is not so much imminent as it is perpetually displaced in the vastness of the universe. De Haan was also included in Sleepless Nights: Visions from Western Canada at Kling and Bang Galleri, Iceland (2009). Recent solo shows include Overcoming Problems Related to This Planet: Hope, Love, Peace, Healing, Generosity, Purpose, Harmony at Galerie Sans Nom, Moncton (2008) and Life After Doomsday at Lump Gallery/Projects, Raleigh (2008) and Where The Ocean Meets This Guy at Stride Gallery, Calgary (2007). De Haan is a member of the collective Unconstrained Growth Into the Void and, with Scott Rogers, is the co-founder of the curatorial initiative Pocket Projects.
Cannon Ball (2012)
One coin from each of the World’s actively circulating currencies.
Geyser sustaining alien tropicals (2011)
Collage on archival inkjet print. 22”x30”.
Installation view, 2010 Alberta Biennial at the Edmonton Art Gallery
Rear on wall: New Jerusalem (2010), mixed materials on paper; Foreground: Salt Beard (2010), mixed materials
Spirits looking at themselves, (2010)
two haunted mirrors, oak; dimensions variable
Cyanotype print. Coin placed on treated paper (50” x 32”) and exposed during the partial Lunar eclipse of the full Moon of June 26, 2010. 30” x 50”. Edition of 3.
THE END IS NEAR HERE IS NEAR THE END (2009)
Untitled Cube (2008)
Cube constructed of 12” x 12” mirror tiles, reflective surfaces facing inwards. Cube contains the Northern Lights (Dawson, Yukon).