Art from detritus

Tittenberger collects errant objects and transforms them into art

Peter Tittenberger, a local Winnipeg artist, is currently showing a solo exhibition at the University of Winnipeg’s gallery 1C03. In this latest exhibition him and me, Tittenberger provides a diverse, artistic vision based from his 35-year practice. 

“I walk the sidewalks, streets and back-lanes of my native Winnipeg. My goal is to walk all of them...,” Tittenberger states in his bio.

Tittenberger, in a recent interview with Gallery 1C03, goes on to say how his curiosity of walking the wondrous streets of Winnipeg was always an obsession that lead into a collection of errant objects. Finding a new home for these objects gives Tittenberger inspiration to incorporate them into his original pieces. Whether through three-dimensional sculptors, Polaroid photographs or old dishes converted into art, visitors of the exhibit could leave him and me artistically enriched. 

Tittenberger’s reputation among Winnipeg’s visionary art world started four decades ago. He holds a B.A. of Arts and Philosophy from the University of Manitoba and certificate in photography from Red River College. His passion is well known; him and me is just one of many exhibits Tittenberger has presented throughout the city. 

Tittenberger’s personal attachment to his work derives out of living in Winnipeg’s North End for most of his life. 

The exhibit is extremely moving, and demonstrates his ability to really turn trash into treasure, nothing into something. It is quite remarkable to witness an artistic mind unfold into a realm of pure creativity. Tittenberger’s ability to walk the streets, side-walks and back-lanes of Winnipeg’s North End, and then take people’s thrown-out scraps and transform them through his vision is nothing short of authentic. He dabbles in such materials that have been used and abused, but then reused into useful meaning for people to come and see. 

Tittenberger’s photography really resonates as a unique artform. The Polaroid photographs showcased were a variety of collages, including photos of children’s toys and women standing in strong positions with words in the background. Perplexed emotions may run high as visitors enter into Tittenberger’s world, due to his subjective art creations.

Visitors can appreciate that through the exhibition, Tittenberger sheds light and a positive affiliation with Winnipeg’s North End. The North End is often shown through a negative perspective on local news, although it is one of the most real neighbourhoods you’ll find in all of Winnipeg. Rather than just avoiding an uncomfortable region in our city, Tittenberger takes lost treasure and brings them into the public eye to inspire people of Winnipeg to keep in mind that all areas in this city can inspire creation.

Published in Volume 69, Number 24 of The Uniter (March 11, 2015)

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