An exhibition featuring the work of Jess Riva Cooper (Toronto)
On view 24/7 until October 4, 2018
Multidisciplinary artist Jess Riva Cooper combines ceramic sculptures and new large-scale drawings to create a haunting, other-worldly installation for the FENTSTER window gallery. The work responds to the renowned early 20th century Yiddish play, “Der dibek: Tsvishn tsvey veltn” (“The Dybbuk: Between Two Worlds”) by noted writer S. An-ski, which popularized the Eastern European Jewish folklore of the evil spirit of the dybbuk, which enters a living person. In the play, powerful rabbis exorcise the dybbuk, removing a perceived harmful spirit from the body of a bride. In the exhibition, female figures attach benevolent shadow-beings to themselves. The artist depicts seamstresses stitching protective garments onto their clothing and even onto their own skin. Through quiet gestures, these women reclaim power denied to the female character in An-ski’s classic drama.