Present Tense

Nice dream
Nice dream
Nice dream
Radiohead lyrics narrate each self-similar day with apocalypse rock, a teenage heartache-for-no-one in the soft gray of nuclear winter. The lo-fi high-strung soundtrack rings true, all anxious outro, all nostalgia for fiction, looping around worlds never named.
Efil ym fo flah
Efil ym fo flah
Efil ym fo flah
Riding down the gravity well, it's a familiar spin round the microwave, where time stands still as it runs out. The toxic desire is to touch down, to crash. Delusions are a secret indulgence, and a dream is a want/need that never reaches a solution.
It wears her out
It wears her out
That I still throw my little coins away and make my little wishes is, I hope, evidence of a beyond, past the moment that drags on and on, past the electric metronome in an open, airless sky.
Keep it moving
Keep it moving
Superglue your thumb and index finger together to make a circle, a constant touch. Look through: a hole and a jeweler's loupe. Loss and wealth. Islands and monuments. Such things belong also to their futures.
Plastic stars dance on the ceiling.
Made you look.
Until the penny drops,
In you, I'm lost
In you, I'm lost

- Jenine Marsh


Toronto-based artist Jenine Marsh’s exhibition at Prairie features a concrete fountain situated on a floor lined with the Canadian newspaper People’s Voice. Marsh has removed select words and phrases from the paper’s pages and placed them on a bouquet of preserved flowers hanging directly above the fountain’s central basin, which is filled with altered coins and gold feet. The coins reappear on a pair of purses installed in the backroom. A fountain, newspaper, flowers, coins, purses, feet—all paraphernalia of contact and exchange, rearranged to elicit a response to the shared conditions of our times. Marsh’s practice resonates with a utopian spirit: her works are manifestations of hope and failure, possibility and stagnation, amplifying the temporal uncertainty of a present caught between the failures of the past and unrealized futures.

 


Installation view

Installation view

Present Tense, 2024
concrete, wood, rigid foam, steel, epoxy clay, powdered pigment, acylic varnish, found mixed-currency coins and tokens

Present Tense, 2024
concrete, wood, rigid foam, steel, epoxy clay, powdered pigment, acylic varnish, found mixed-currency coins and tokens

Present Tense, 2024
concrete, wood, rigid foam, steel, epoxy clay, powdered pigment, acylic varnish, found mixed-currency coins and tokens

Installation view

People's Voice (under and around), 2024
Socialist newspaper People's Voice, wallpaper paste

People's Voice (under and around), 2024
Socialist newspaper People's Voice, wallpaper paste

Installation view

Flowers for the Present, 2024
flowers, wire, synthetic rubber, acrylic UV varnish

Flowers for the Present, 2024
flowers, wire, synthetic rubber, acrylic UV varnish

Installation view

Installation view

All my pasts and futures (1), 2024
leather purse, altered mixed-currency coins

Installation view

All my pasts and futures (2), 2024
leather purse, altered mixed-currency coins

Jenine Marsh (b. 1984, Calgary AB Canada) received her BFA from the Alberta University of the Arts (2007) and her MFA from the University of Guelph (2013). Marsh’s work has been exhibited in Canadian galleries such as Morris and Helen Belkin Art Gallery, Vancouver (2024); Cooper Cole, Toronto (2023); Joe Project, Montreal (2023); Franz Kaka, Toronto (2019); and Centre Clark, Montreal (2019). She has also exhibited in international museums and galleries including Gianni Manhattan, Vienna (2023); Union Pacific, London (2023); Night Gallery, Los Angeles (2022); Essex Flowers, New York (2020); Palais de Tokyo, Paris (2019), OSL Contemporary, Oslo (2019); Entrée Gallery (2018), and Lulu, Mexico City (2015). She has served as artist in residence at the Banff Centre for the Arts (2009, 2010 and 2022), at AiR Bergen at USF Verftet, Bergen (2018); La Datcha, Berlin (2018); Rupert, Vilnius (2017); and Vermont Studio Center, Johnson (2011). Marsh lives and works in Toronto, Canada.