by Fiona O'Connor
"With anywhere from 4 to 6 million motorcycles in Saigon alone, Vietnam's streets are a chaotic tangle of noise, motion and pollution. Working from a series of personal photos taken from the busiest intersections throughout Vietnam, David Shaw's new collection of watercolours captures the anonymous travellers of the world's most congested urban centres, making revealing narrative portraits of the otherwise invisible."
If the name rings a bell, it's because you might have seen it before on Montreal For Insiders: just days ago, David Shaw was one of four DJ's who graced the Terrace McAuslan and its industrial surroundings for Pop Montreal's Italodisco Bike-In, held this Saturday past.
On Thursday August 20th, Shaw presents us with an entirely different kind of artistry, this time, a series of watercolour paintings based on images he collected while traveling in Vietnam.
"Each painting in the series is a labour to capture an unguarded moment from an almost faceless commuter in the unending parade of Vietnam's traffic," writes Shaw in his artist statement. "I want the viewer to absorb not just the individual, but also the act of taking an ephemeral moment and binding it down to a piece of paper; the process of hunting for an image, shooting it, preserving it, and mounting the thing on the wall."
If the sample works featured here are any indication, Shaw's efforts to capture the individual faces and "ephemeral moments" in his collection of arresting portraits will prove successful. Equally successful, I suspect, will be Shaw's ability to fascinate and impress the minds of those who come to see his latest oeuvre. The race to claim one of Shaw's striking pieces will no doubt be tight, so if you're in the market for buying, come to Blizzarts early - before the St-Laurent haunt morphs from gallery space into Main hotspot.
The Outside Dream opens at Blizzarts, 3956A St-Laurent Blvd. on Thursday, August 20th from 8-11pm. Exhibition runs until September 3rd.