School of Art Gallery: Dancing with Tantalus: Gabrielle L'Hirondelle Hill, Katie Lyle, and Ella Dawn McGeough - Curated by Lillian O’Brien Davis, January 21 - March 13

Dancing with Tantalus

Gabrielle L'Hirondelle Hill, Katie Lyle, and Ella Dawn McGeough

Curated by Lillian O'Brien Davis

January 21 to March 13, 2021

Contact is a many layered metaphor; both touch and its absence have consequences that can extend indefinitely. I look at my hands. They feel huge, like mitts that will cover, crush, or make a mess. I am frightened that the marks they make will last too long, be too big, cause unpredictable outcomes. When I do make contact, the effects are not immediate—this delay temporarily alleviates my fears. However, all marks, all instances of contact, eventually appear. While contact may signal a crisis, its lack also torments, like the aching feeling when something lies just out of grasp.

Consider the Greek myth of Tantalus, who stole ambrosia, nectar, and the gods' secrets of immortality for his people. As punishment for his crime, Tantalus was made to stand in a clear pool where water receded before he could drink, underneath trees laden with fruit that forever escaped his grasp. Touching leaves traces, often more lasting than originally imagined, but the absence of touch builds both anticipation and desire.

Featuring work by Ella Dawn McGeough, Katie Lyle and Gabrielle L'Hirondelle Hill, Dancing with Tantalus engages qualities of contact—between people, surfaces, and objects—to examine haptic intimacy and explore the causal relationship between artworks and the many structures that make contact with them—physically, intellectually, emotionally, institutionally, and historically.

*Please note that the School of Art Gallery is currently closed due to COVID-19. Contact the gallery and consult our COVID-19 protocols before planning your visit.

Associated Programming:

Dancing with Tantalus Panel Discussion

Thursday, February 18, 7:00 to 8:30 p.m. CT

Facilitated on Zoom and livestreamed on the School of Art Gallery, University of Manitoba YouTube channel

Please visit to learn more and register.

Panel will be ASL interpreted and recorded and uploaded to YouTube.

More Dancing with Tantalus associated programming >

School of Art Gallery

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Winnipeg MB R3T2N2

For more information, contact School of Art Media and Events Coordinator Cailyn Harrison,

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