"Edifice" presents the site of a massive construction project in which past and present coexist in a hazy, dream-like landscape. Stemming from Norlen’s research on Kitchener-Waterloo - earlier known as Berlin because of its German-speaking settlers - the work explores the area’s historical transformation. The artist has integrated her impressions of industrial sites such as The Consolidated (Dominion) Rubber factory and the former ladder factory Berlin Woodenware Co. Local cultural and architectural elements, including a crystal fountain, "Sängerfest" (singers’ festival) garlands, a dilapidated casino façade, an observation tower, and the famous West Montrose covered bridge, appear mirage-like in this illogical landscape. Dramatic reds, yellows, oranges, and pinks erupt into the sky and illuminate a fantastical "mise en scène" populated by innumerable ladders, yet devoid of human figures, creating a mood of apocalyptic foreboding. The body of water and disconnected bridge in the foreground suggest that this place is unattainable - an intangible world beyond our grasp yet within which our gaze becomes immersed.
Materialscoloured chalk and pastel over watercolour wash on wove paper
370 x 550 cm