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As Above So Below Lyndsay McKay

Fri. September 3rd 2021 - Fri. October 1st 2021
We knew of no other circumstances in which to exist. It was simply a way of being – a reliable invasion of harmony and a co-existence that could never be otherwise. So, when the clouds accumulated on the horizon and the storm passed through, we united our bodies and emerged as one ever-expanding, tentacular form. Together, we multiplied again and again, in a symbiotic reforming of the grounds for vitality.
Lyndsay McKay (On observations as an identical twin)
My current work as an emerging artist has tended towards a dedicated intersection of art and science. While observing the activity of organic materials – common molds, various fungal cultures, certain grassroot systems, to name a few - in combination with other mixed media, my fascination surfaced in the most appropriately rhizomatic fashion. My research and interests are twofold: to orchestrate a purposeful interruption in the pathways of organic subject matter by manipulating the formal qualities of inserted materials, and, to take a representational approach, showcasing a complex mirroring and unapologetic romanticization of the delicate and resilient intricacies of other-than-human relationships and networks. Using objects commonly found in clinical settings, symbolic nuances within my work have the potential for being underpinned within its aesthetic context. Latex gloves, syringes, silicone tubing, plaster and medicine cups all take on new meaning when the microscope’s lens is left open for interpretation. These industrially sourced materials, when placed together, provide a heavily structured framework, a pseudo-installation, a gestalt of fantastical activity which intrinsically embodies the gestural effort it takes to create the work. Over the past 5 years, I have grown established in my experimental processes with organic material and I remain intrigued by its rich association to intellectual expansion. As well as its adherence to anatomical physicality, this work brings up the metaphorical influences inside the ever-expanding structure of knowledge, unpacking new views in ontological perspective, while investigating concepts such as synchronized communication and references to post-Humanism philosophy.
While developing a body of graduating work for my BFA, I became heavily focused on my body of work titled, “Biomorphic Landscapes”, which studies the linkages between human anatomy and external peril. Succumbing to a year cut short by a global pandemic, I have continued with this area of investigation as it became an even more pertinent focal point during a time of heavy uncertainty. With Covid-19 threatening the health and welfare of everyday existence on a global scale, the nature of this work has become abundantly relevant. As Above, So Below interprets the similarities between the microcosm and macrocosm - where cellular masses grow with boundless effort, where interstitial spaces become vascular mazes; internal systems of highways, carrying the regard for vitality. Where cracks and other inherent qualities become tangible boundaries; treated as exaggerated space-making for ontological division. In this blurring of the lines between resilience and fragility, there exists the most certain exclamation of grandiosity – which somehow still ponders all levels of scale.
Lyndsay McKay (pronouns she/her) was born in Waterloo, Ontario. She currently lives in Victoria, British Columbia. Drawing from her experiences as a former nurse, Lyndsay's work explores ways of transforming materials into a gestalt of viscerality, evocative of anatomical activity, pathogenic invasion, and cellularity. Graduating in 2020 with a BFA from Emily Carr University of Art + Design, Lyndsay’s academic interest began to merge the disciplines of art and science early in her path as a visual artist. Her work investigates biological embodiment through sculpture-based practices, highlighting concepts such as the connection between human and other-than-human species, bio-mapping, human environmental relationships, ontology, epistemic expansion, and the structure of knowledge. Her recent works closely study organic materiality, which have opened doors to ever-evolving areas of navigation, from the relinquishment of control and sharing space, to the politics of symbolism and recognizing the powers of modern materials. With the ability to adapt to new modes and new contexts, Lyndsay grants herself the flexibility of becoming a steadfast observer, exploring the narrative within, and becoming a detailed storyteller. Her works are response-driven vehicles for communication and visually imaginative playgrounds. Better understood as a complex with no beginning or end, Lyndsay’s work appear as tangible ecosystems that weave in threads of Deleuzean thought; multilinearity and a philosophical outlook that forgoes boundaries in favour of tentacular outreach. With this pliable plane as the basis for her platform, Lyndsay dives progressively into ideologies that bring to life, a newly imagined anatomical configuration – a space for perception and privilege, for boundless histories, for inclusion, and for bodies of thought.
In her time away from practicing art, Lyndsay is a mother to four and a grandmother to one. You might find her balancing her roles of true maternal devotion and career-oriented individualism. In the fall of 2021, Lyndsay is beginning her MFA at the University of Windsor. She will be further studying the discipline of bioart, while working with Incubator Art Lab in Windsor, Ontario.

the fifty fifty arts collective is comprised of individuals living and working on unceded and occupied First Nations Territories, specifically the lands of the Songhees and Esquimalt Nations, as well as the W̱SÁNEĆ, Sc'ianew and T'Souke First Nations.
The programming space itself is situated on Songhees and Esquimalt Territory but engages with individuals and communities across Turtle Island.
As a collective we endeavor to deepen our own understandings of how we are implicated in the history and in the present ongoing project of settler colonialism. As members of the fifty fifty arts collective we continually responsibilize ourselves to the complex kind of space that is the fifty fifty which hosts and facilitates the dissemination of the ideas and work of others.


Accessibility Information:
The entrance to the fifty fifty arts collective is wheelchair accessible, however, the door is not automatic and we have no washrooms on site. A more comprehensive statement regarding our accessibility is in progress, specific questions or requests regarding accessibility can be sent to [email protected]