Memory Formation and Recollection: Art by Jeannie Polisuk

A painting of a stuffed rabbit come to life dressed in a leopard print dressHunter, oil on canvas

Jeannie Polisuk is a painter and sculptor based in eastern Canada. In her artistic practice, Jeannie creates two and three-dimensional artworks that use a symbolic visual language to address themes of memory formation and recollection through sentimental objects. 

A sculpture consisting of stuffed toys in an elongated glass containerSoap as a Yardstick of Civilization, stuffed toys, yardstick


As we saw in our previous feature of Jeannie’s darkly iconographic artwork, an image of a stuffed rabbit made unnervingly animate appears as a recurring motif throughout the artist’s portfolio. The perceived “innocence” of this motif allows for a jarring sense of contrast when the artist places it in scenes that are often dark or overtly sexual in nature. In the viewer, this visual dissonance evokes a sense of discomfort and forces a moment of introspection in which the viewer tries to reconcile their present with their past, or their childhood. 

A screen capture of Jeanie Polisuk's art portfolio


Jeannie’s sculptural artworks utilize similar motifs -- stuffed animals and toys, often with a ragged and dirty appearance, encased in glass or wrapped in twine so as to distort their familiar forms into strange and vaguely disconcerting or off-putting appearances.

A painting of a stuffed bunny in a blue dress with branch-like antlersHorny, oil on canvas

Written by: Dallas Jeffs
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