Ryan Van Der Hout: Dark Waters
The last century has been a golden age of water: a world where you can consistently turn on the tap and find clean, fresh water coming out in any Western city. With global climate change, this expectation is becoming less certain. Droughts, contamination, and flooding in places like Los Angeles, Flint, Cape Town and many Indigenous populations have pushed our ability to receive water to the limit.
Dark Waters is a series of images of water and clouds looking at our hand in commodifying and altering nature. Using a laser cutter, Van Der Hout burns holes into photographs and mirrors, allowing certain portions of the image to remain and others to fall away -- exploring his interest in the process of creation through destruction. The destruction of the photographs becomes a metaphor for our incursions into nature. The incursions into the photograph feel natural and organic in some places and repetitive and mechanical in others, mirroring the tension between the seemingly natural and the manufactured landscape.
This immersive exhibition contains a series of light boxes, photographs and a video piece of infinite mirrors of images of water crashing inside of an oil drum, looking at the commodification of water.
Presented in juncture to City of Toronto's Nuit Blanche 2018 as an official Independent Project.
Ryan Van Der Hout (Ryerson Image Arts, BFA) is a photo-based artist working in Toronto. His work explores photographic materials and experimental processes. Van Der Hout has an ongoing documentary project focused on artistic process + studio space which has been widely published including The Huffington Post, CBC.ca and Readers Digest.
His work has been exhibited across Canada, the U.K. and in New York, most notably as part of the AGO’s Collector’s series, as a featured Contact exhibition in Flash Forward and the Artist Award with an exhibition at Robert McLaughlin Gallery (RMG). Van Der Hout has been supported by the Ontario Arts Council and is currently represented by Oeno Gallery.