- born in 1959 in Brooklyn, New York
- parents emigrated from Russia
- has lived in Canada since 1989
- B.F.A. (1983), Concordia University, Montréal, Québec
click on thumbnails at left to view larger images
Devora Neumark, an interdisciplinary artist, has worked
with installation, intervention and durational performance to explore the authority of
memory, both on an individual and societal level. As a Jewish woman, Neumark integrates
her Jewishness into societal concerns, as in a truth, a fiction... of sabbath clothes
and feeling an imposter (1996/97). In this performative work Neumark inserted herself
into the pictorial space of Isidor Kaufmann's painting The Friday Night, in which
a woman is sitting alone at a table laid out with Sabbath candles, wine and Challah.
Neumark embodied this woman, and unsewed the dress she had made from paper patterns in the
style of the painted figure's clothing. As she detached each piece of the pattern dress,
Neumark stitched it to a blanket she was creating. The resulting paper blanket then was
used to wrap her naked self at the end of the process. In the 1995 series (un)veilings,
a photographic anti-monument created for the Old Market Square in Winnipeg, Neumark
explored the issue of child abuse and the current debate surrounding memories of childhood
trauma. In the same year, Neumark in collaboration with Danielle Boutet and Hélène
Engel, developed traces--a public intervention as studio practice. This was a
durational performative intervention and sound work in Montréal's Square Victoria Metro
station which questioned the idealized representations of woman in Western tradition and
Jewish Orthodoxy. marked, like some pages in a book (1997) involves the insertion
of bookmarks made by the artist into books in libraries and bookstores wherever she
travels. With 10,000 bookmarks printed, this work is still ongoing. On one side of the
bookmark is an image of the arson that burned her home and studio to the ground, on the
other side is a photograph of her hands peeling beets during a six hour durational
performative street intervention s(us)taining which she did to mark the six month
anniversary of the event. In another 1997 durational performative intervention présence,
Neumark used crochet to create an ambiguous object (part kippah, part garment, cocoon and
body bag) while marking her contact with pedestrians in the colour of the stitches.
Crocheting in yellow while alone, Neumark switched to purple when people cared to
interact. Neumark's art, which is usually created as insertions into the public sphere has
been woven into and out of her work in public service. She served as Vice-president from
1995-1999 of Auberge Shalom . . . pour femmes, a Montreal crises intervention centre and
shelter for woman victims of conjugal violence and their dependant children. The emphasis
on working with women and storytelling was present back in 1994 when, in collaboration
with Lily Markiewicz, she produced like (in) the space of breath: aspects of ritual
and community for an artist run centre in London, Ontario. The two women sifted
flour, kneaded dough, swept the floor and told stories of ritual and communal
participation, encouraging gallery visitors to take part in the activities and
story-telling. Neumark coordinated the Saidye Bronfman Centre for the Arts Youth
Institute's program Once upon our time and in 1994 co-organized the international
symposium Visual Art and Jewish Identity: A Contemporary Experience with Regine
Basha, then curator of the Art Gallery of the SBC. Neumark is currently working on a
website focussing on the same theme. In addition, she has been an arts enrichment
instructor at the Hebrew Foundation School in Dollard des Ormeaux, artist-in-residence at
the Southern Alberta Art Gallery in Lethbridge and at Fringe Research Holographics in
Toronto. As a frequent lecturer, she has addressed a wide variety of audiences across
North America and in England, speaking about her artistic practice; interdisciplinarity,
competing authorities of memory and history; formations of identity; family violence; and
health and safety in the visual arts. Since 1985, Neumark has produced a number of visual
arts health and safety guides including An ounce of prevention for Concordia
University's Faculty of Fine Arts. Most recently, Neumark initiated and was co-organizer
with Loren Lerner and pk langshaw of Public Art as Social Intervention a
multilayered project looking at the relationship between engaged artistic practice and the
after-effects of violence and trauma at http://design.concordia.ca/publicart.
||back pain: a postcard
in collaboration with Wende Bartley and Naomi Kahane at the Koffler Gallery (Toronto) and
the Sweeney Art Gallery (Riverside, California)
||marked like some pages in a
Ongoing solo intervention in the form of a bookmark, book stores, and libraries
everywhere the artist travels.
Solo street intervention/durational performance within group exhibition called Sur
l'expérience de la ville, Optica, Montréal, Québec
||Communal Voices: Making a
Place to be Heard
Southern Alberta Art Gallery, Lethbridge, Alberta
Solo street intervention/durational performance, Montréal, Québec
Auberge Shalom, Montréal, Québec
||traces -- a public
intervention as studio practice
in collaboration with Danielle Boutet and Hélène Engel and sponsored in part by Cobalt
Art Actuel's Les ateliers s'exposent Square Victoria Metro Station (Montréal, Québec)
Old Market Square, Montréal, Québec
The Task of Mourning
Neutral Ground Artist Run Centre, Regina, Saskatchewan
||Like (in) the Space of
Breath: Aspects of Ritual and Community
in collaboration with Lily Markiewicz Forest City Gallery (London, Ontario)
||making a book (fragmentary
Public intervention/durational performance, Bibliothèque nationale du Québec,
Gallery 101, Ottawa, Ontario
Solo public intervention, Montréal, Québec
Gallery 44, Centre for Contemporary Photography, Toronto, Ontario
||Le scénario visuel de la
page : 100 livres d'artistes
Bibliothèque nationale du Québec, Montréal, Québec
||L'Art inquiet. Motifs
Galerie de l'UQAM, Montréal, Québec
||Les cigales et les fourmis:
Exposition bénéfice de dessins et d'oeuvres de petit format
Optica, Montréal, Québec
York Quay Gallery, Toronto, Ontario
Southern Alberta Art Gallery, Lethbridge, Alberta
||Artifice 96: Contemporary
Visual Art in Montréal
Galerie d'art centre Saidye Bronfman/Gallery of the Saidye Bronfman Centre for the
Arts, Montréal, Québec
Rebelles un jour,
Congrès de Fondation de la réseau des lesbiennes de Québec, Montréal, Québec
Quand le livre devait ouvre d'art le livre d'artiste:
Maison Hamel-Bruneau, Québec, Québec
||Biennial du livre d'artiste
Foire du livre d'artiste, Purchase Prize Association Pays-Paysage,
Leonard and Bina Ellen Art Gallery, Concordia University, Montréal, Québec
Reflections on Our Identity
Jewish Women's Caucus for Art National Conference, University of Texas, San Antonio,
||A Livre Ouvert
Centre d'exposition du Vieux-Palais, Saint-Jerôme, Québec
||Une certaine présence au
Maison de la culture Mercier, Montréal, Québec
Bibliothèque national du Québec, Montréal, Québec
Bruce Peel Special Collections Library, University of Alberta, Calgary, Alberta
Harvard University Library Rare Books Collection, Boston, Massachusetts
Lillian Mauer et Martha Tapiero Lawee
Musée du Québec, Collection prêt d'oeuvres d'art,
National Library of Canada Artists' Books Collection, Ottawa, Ontario
|Aquin, Stéphane. "L'art inquiet:
Artistes, vos papiers!" Voir 12, no. 4 (29 January 1998): n.p.
---. "Sur l'expérience de la ville: les vingt-cinq and
d'Optica." Voir 64 (11 September 1997): n.p.
Blouin, Marcel, et al. Le mois de la photo à
Montréal, september 1993: aspects de la photographie québécoise et canadienne. Montréal,
Québec: Vox Populi, 1993.
Carlevaris, Anna. Forming Memory. Montréal,
Québec: Leonard and Bina Ellen Art Gallery, 1995.
---. "monumental amnesia: recent installations by
Devora Neumark." In Light Year: A Festival of Photographies. Winnipeg:The
Floating Gallery, 1998.
Catchlove, Lucinda. "Women's work?" Hour
5, no. 10 (6 March 1997): 12.
Constantino, Terry, et al. Valediction. Toronto,
Ontario: Gallery 44, 1991.
Cron, Marie-Michèle, et al. Les ateliers s'exposent
1995. Montréal, Québec: Cobalt art actuel, 1995.
Déry, Louise, et al. L'art inquiet: motifs
d'engagement. Montréal, Québec: Gallery UQAM, 1998.
langshaw, pk, Martin Meilleur, and Devora Neumark, eds. Immixtion:
Sites of Engagement. Montréal, Québec: Dare-dare, 1997.
Liss, David, and Marie-Michèle Cron. "Artifice '96:
Contemporary Visual Art in Montréal." ETC Montréal 36 (1996/7):
Nefsky, Marilyn F. "Memory and History: The Power of
the Dead" presented at Confronting the Holocaust: A Mandate for the 21st Century.
The 26th Annual Scholars' Conference on the Holocaust and the Churches: 1996.
Neumark, Devora. "Departed structure - imparted
tracing: on the rhetoric of monuments." Espace 19 (Spring 1992): n.p.
---. En Suite. Montréal, Québec: Gallery
---. An Ounce of Prevention: Health and Safety in the
Visual Arts. Montréal, Québec: Concordia University, 1998.
---. Santé et sécurité dans l'enseignments des
arts plastiques. Québec, Québec: Minister of Education, 1992.
---. "S(us)taining memories/dwelling." MIX
Magazine 23, no. 1 (Summer 1997): 56-59.
---. "Les yeux fermés." Vie des arts
158 (Spring 1995): 24-25.
Ring, Nancy. "Devora Neumark: Metro Square
Victoria." Parachute 82 (April - June 1996): 49-50.
Turner, Myron. "Archaeologies of light." Border
Crossings 15, no. 1 (February 1996): 48-50.
Walsh, Robert, Photography and the Art of Death. Toronto,
Ontario: Gallery 44, 1991.