Luis Jacob & Noam Gonick, ‘Wildflowers of Manitoba’ (2007)
‘Wildflowers of Manitoba’ is a surround-vision, four-screen installation by Luis Jacob and Noam Gonick depicting hallucinatory visions of a tribe of nude boy-folk exploring the splendors of the Canadian Prairies. The work revolves around a notion of utopia as a blissful, sensual – and sexual – return to the land. This erogenous, non-narrative film references an imagined scenario echoing late 60s counter-culture, with its widespread experimental communitarianism, environmentalism, and sexual liberation. The piece pays tribute to the particularly Queer experience of that historical moment. The installation is permeated by the Québécois band Harmonium, whose 1975 album shows the separatist ideology shared by the band at that time. The installation creates an immersive environment that places viewers inside and outside the dome, somewhere between Brion Gysin’s ‘Dreamachine’ and Wilhelm Reich’s ‘Orgone Generator’.
Luis Jacob (°1971) is a writer, curator, and artist whose work has been exhibited at the Toronto Sculpture Garden, the Art Gallery of Ontario, documenta 12 in Kassel, Germany, and ‘We Can Do This Now’ at the Power Plant in Toronto. He lives and works in Toronto, Canada.
Noam Gonick (°1973) has premiered feature films at the Venice, Berlin, Toronto and Sundance Film Festivals. His close study of filmmakers Guy Maddin and Bruce LaBruce resulted in an award winning (‘Hot Docs’) biographical documentary on Maddin narrated by Tom Waits, and a book on LaBruce. He lives and works in Winnipeg, Canada.