As a kid, I used to believe people were living inside my television set. How else could Mr. Dress-up appear through the tube? If I was allowed to break the glass barrier between Sesame Street and my living room, I could have enjoyed mouthfuls of cookies. Despite my fantasy of jumping through a “looking glass,” I soon learned that was not the reality. My television was old, and it began to show some glitch-like symptoms, automatically changing channels and distorting colours and figures.
Blurring the boundaries between a window and screen, I utilize smartphones, laser printers, software, and paint, to create lens-based works full of colour and errors. I push the limits of print technology to the point it releases data—photographs captured from life—impressionistically. I use paint’s loose, chromatic, and illusory qualities, on thinly transferred scenes to revisit the unseen and internal. Juxtaposed layers of the real and abstract explore the nature of collective memory shaped by physical and virtual realities. Caught between security and freedom—vibrant, eroded, and restored—my works invite exchange of perspectives.
Jaspal Birdi (B.1988, Toronto) is a Canadian artist who combines photography and painting by experimenting with modern technologies. Through programming, print and paint, her practice reconstructs and examines boundaries in virtual and physical worlds. Birdi completed her BFA in Drawing and Painting from OCAD University 2010, a Museum Internship at The Peggy Guggenheim Collection 2011, and a Master of Arts Management from Istituto Europeo di Design (IED) 2013. Her works have earned recognition from the Ontario Arts Council and Canada Council for the Arts, as well as several awards, including the 2013 Arte Laguna Solo Exhibition Prize, the 2017/18 Fondazione Bevilacqua La Masa (BLM) Artist Residency, BLM Stonefly Art Award, the 2020/21 Fondazione Culturale San Fedele Visual Arts Fellowship and Martini International Award. In 2017 Birdi co-curated the exhibition Command-Alternative-Escape for the opening week of the Venice International Art Biennale. During the 2018 Berlin Art Week, her works were shown in Transferred Recall, a curated solo exhibition. In 2020 Birdi presented Can I Play Outside? a solo exhibition supported by the RBC Foundation Emerging Artist Residency at the Robert McLaughlin Gallery. In 2022, she exhibited Eyes Looking Without Seeing, a solo show at the Women's Art Association of Canada in Toronto. For Vancouver’s 2023 Capture Photography Festival, Birdi’s public artwork 11h02m is featured at the Canada Line Lansdowne Station, presented by Richmond Art Gallery. Currently, Birdi presents Occhi Che Guardano Senza Vedere, a curated solo exhibition at Fondazione Vittorio Leonesio near Italy’s Lake Garda.
Jaspal Birdi thanks and acknowledges the support from: