Jay Senetchko: A tale of two empires


Jay Senetchko, The Fire Sermon, 2017, oil on canvas, 72 x 96 inches
Contributed by Dion Kliner / Looking from painting to painting at “The Course of a Distant Empire,” Jay Senetchko’s fine solo exhibition at Winsor Gallery in Vancouver, you might begin to recall the distinctly dissonant percussion in Tom Waits’s cheerfully ominous song as he plaintively asks, “What’s he building in there?” And then, “Where in its course does this empire exist? In which direction is it moving?” How does Senetchko mean that direction to be understood? Do the paintings – The Fire SermonA Game of ChessThe Burial of the DeadDeath by Water, and finally What the Thunder Said – represent a state of falling from, or building towards? Is their message a pessimistic descent into a dark age, or an optimistic recovery from catastrophe and dawn of a bright and sustainable new future?
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