Larissa Tiggelers

Double Insight
w/ Larissa Tiggelers


Larissa Tiggelers holds an MFA from the University of Guelph and a BFA with distinction from the Alberta University of the Arts. Prior to beginning her graduate studies, she served in a number of positions within Calgary-based artist-run centres, culminating her service in 2015. Tiggelers’ work has been exhibited at Norberg Hall (Calgary), Christie Contemporary (Toronto), Erin Stump Projects (Toronto), Galerie D’Este (Montréal), The Bakery (Vancouver) and Paniki Gallery (Batan, Philippines).

In July 2020, Tiggelers became an Assistant Professor in the Department of Visual Arts at the University of Regina, returning to the prairie landscape that has undoubtedly informed both her paintings and her temperament.

In an effort to maintain safety measures and ensure physical distancing, we have been visiting our artists in their studios virtually. Double Insight is a new series which offers a glimpse into the artist studio and workplace; the sacred place where creative life and creative process coexist. ⁣

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Larissa Tiggelers’ northern Alberta upbringing taught her to accept solitude and admire deceptive landscapes.

Like a prairie horizon, Tiggelers’ paintings are guilefully formal and deludingly flat, but through slow and sustained looking, their spatial ambiguity unfolds into perceptual richness. Limiting the evidence of brush strokes, these paintings accumulate soft surfaces and offer spaces of contemplation.

Tiggelers’ process embraces introspection and withdrawal from external concerns. By disregarding conventional colour theory’s efforts to standardize and rationalize colour, her paintings attest to colour’s perplexity, vitality and unknowability.

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Tiggelers’ practice has always prioritized the unknown, but the uncertainty surrounding the COVID-19 pandemic has only intensified her desire for slowness and pensiveness. In the studio, excessive productivity isn’t the answer. A more frenetic pace would only mimic the mutating virus we’re trying to avoid.

She has embraced the unmitigated delay between cause and effect, or idea and making, as a panacea. In his essay, “Exhaustion and Exuberance,” Jan Verwoert describes the beauty of latency:

To embrace latency goes against the grain of the logic of high performance. The appraisal of latency restores dignity to the unsaid, the unshown, and everything that can’t be dragged out into the open in the rush of high performance when the value of all our potentials appears to depend entirely on our capacity to actualise them right here, right now. The fatal consequence of a continuous pressure to perform is the exhaustion of all our potentials precisely because the current social order denies the value of latency, the value of a potentiality that remains presently unactualised and quite possibly can’t ever be exhaustively actualised. It seems that we have to learn to re-experience the value and beauty of latency.

Sometimes it’s better to prioritize looking over making, slowness over speed. Letting time fallow so it can flourish later.

Verwoert, Jan and Ohlraun, Vanessa. “Exhaustion and Exuberance.” Tell Me What You Want,
What You Really, Really Want. Berlin: Sternberg Press, 2011. pp. 98-112.

For more information on Larissa Tiggelers and the availability of her work, please contact the gallery directly:

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Art Inquiry