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Charlene Vickers, Sleepwalking, mixed media sculptural installation, 2004-2006; photo: Iga Janik

Tracking Absence

Deborah Koenker, Mae Leong, Femke van Delft, Charlene Vickers

Main Gallery

November 3 – December 2, 2006

Curated by:

This group exhibition brings together women artists working around issues of consumerism, employment, identity and violence, as they relate to the presence and absence of the othered body. Femke van Delft’s series Missing is comprised of photographic images and texts that culturally map missing sex-trade workers in downtown Vancouver. Deborah Koenker’s textile installation Fotos y Recuerdos/Photographs and Memories presents a grid of single fingerprints and photographs of the nearly 500 women and girls who have been murdered in Juarez, Mexico. Charlene Vickers’ mixed media sculptural installation Sleepwalking comprises various objects including moccasins sewn from beer cases, folded blankets and photos placed in and around a circle of chairs to expose the objectification and cultural dislocation of the First Nations culture by the tourist industry. Mae Leong’s Barcodes+Sound displays thousands of the artist’s collected barcodes revealing them as a memento mori for the exploitative conditions and intensely physical labour that produce these items.


Deborah Koenker is a Vancouver-based artist who holds an MFA in Sculpture/Installation from Claremont Graduate University and a BA in Fine Art from the University of Southern California. Her work has been exhibited in venues across Canada, the U.S.A., Mexico and Ireland and can be found in the collections of many galleries and institutions in North America. Koenker teaches at the Emily Carr Institute of Art and Design.

Critical Art & Culture