What’s pushed out
the door comes back through the window

What’s pushed out the door comes back through the window
adhe­sive vinyl on Plex­i­glas and mir­ror, approx. 5 × 5 feet
Win­dow 5 (Art­space Build­ing), Win­nipeg, MB


The words that make up this sen­tence are more or less what I remem­ber read­ing in an essay by Charles Fouri­er years ago. Fouri­er was an ear­ly 19th-cen­tu­ry inven­tor of pha­lanster­ies, the­o­rist of utopias, and coin­er of the word fem­i­nism. What­ev­er is repressed, oppressed, or forcibly exclud­ed from a giv­en sit­u­a­tion or milieu, finds its way back in through oth­er routes. Wild­ness even­tu­al­ly comes back to pro­lif­er­ate, through laps­es lin­guae, ticks and stut­ters, through the decay of archi­tec­ture, through steam released, through rev­o­lu­tion­ary erup­tions. The rapa­cious serv­ing up of our land, lakes, rivers, and oceans to cor­po­rate prof­it spells dis­as­ter. The vinyl from the text is an oil deriv­a­tive. It is made up of eth­yl­ene (found in crude oil) and chlo­rine (found in com­mon salt). Here the mate­r­i­al is used to rep­re­sent images of how this very mate­r­i­al back­fires on itself, off-gassing on the under­side of vinyl-cut words, a kind of uncon­scious rever­sal, the under­side of concept—colourful mat­ter and crude left­overs, min­ing for mat­ter, and its wrath­ful revenge. We will one day be found enfold­ed in a foot of filth, named the Anthropocene.