Peepshow, the 2012 U of T Visual Arts thesis exhibition featuring the work of 20 artists in the final year of their undergrad career, took over the North Borden Building for its opening reception on March 30. The show was an orgiastic combination of a wide array of media including paintings, drawings, photography, conceptual pieces, performance art, and film. Takeaway cue cards detailing the artist and their contact information could be found at the beginning of the exhibition and accompanying the artwork.
Elias Saoud’s photographs, inky renderings of what seem to be natural landscapes saturated with disorienting opacity, were a highlight. Warped illustrations of human bodies, Burton-esque in their cheeky perversion of individual body parts, were artist Oli Li’s stunning contribution to the show. Gabrielle Gray’s painting, a deeply immersive image of a pair of hands wrapped around a woman’s body, displayed her command of colour and strength of expression.
While the most permanent parts of the exhibition were impressive in their own way, Anna Sarchami’s performance art piece was disappointing at best. Presented as the evening’s main event, it involved her approaching visitors of the exhibition in complete silence and engaging them in some way. Her work was pedestrian, inspiring the idle shuffle of feet and the occasional giggle in addition to forcing many people to seek refuge as far away from her line of sight as possible. I suppose this turned out to be a good thing, however, because it gave people a chance to re-experience the works of several extremely talented future art-world superstars.