Description

Tim Moore enlists a combination of painting and collage to explore the question of identity. His hybrid images evoke the multicultural essence of Canadian identity and point up the complexity of the nation’s history. Which Beast Shall I Admire parodies the cover of a fictitious magazine called The Canadian Colour. With the image of a moose and cut-out words, the artist couples the emblematic animal of the boreal forest with reference to the development of British North America, adding, then crossing out, the mention of French and Aboriginal roots, as if they had been literally “erased from the map.” The various symbols – the maple leaf, the red of the Canadian flag, the moose, the allusion to Canada’s three founding cultures – are meant to shed light on Canadian diversity while verging on a political message. A creature of dual heritage emerges from the combination of these fragments: part moose, native to Canada, and part cow (suggested by the white spots), introduced by European colonists. As the title asks, which of these animals, which culture, stands for North America? J.B.