Two-person exhibition presented by Artcite Inc. as part of the 5th annual Windsor Labour Arts Festival organized by the University of Windsor Labour Studies Program
Developed by the Labour Studies program at the University of Windsor, the Labour Arts Festival brings together local cultural organizations, community groups, unions and educators in a month-long series of events designed to focus public awareness on the reciprocity of cultural and industrial production. Throughout the month of January, the festival includes lectures and symposia, film screenings, readings, workshops, exhibitions, plays and other events.
Artcite has participated in the previous three editions of the Labour Arts Festival. For the 2004 festival, in addition to curating and organizing a gallery exhibition addressing the theme of art and labour (please see the Bezaire/Jones exhibition noted above), Artcite also hosted the closing reception for the Labour Arts Festival on February 6 (please see the Special Events section noted below).
“IT’S LIKE ADVANCING AND RETREATING” by Jeffrey Daniel Bezaire (Windsor ON)
installation images (l – r): Jeff
Bezaire; Barrie Jones
“UNIFORMED” by Barrie Jones (Vancouver BC, formerly Windsor ON) as part of Windsor Labour Arts Festival
Two-person exhibition presented by Artcite Inc.
Jeff Bezaire assembles comical, malfunctioning interactive mechanisms that examine the historical construction of the worker-as-machine. Human surrogates such as briefcases and hard hats are propelled by motors into inept, spasmodic motions, satirizing the “well-oiled machine” of capital’s ideal workplace. Photographer Barrie Jones examines the rituals of corporate identity and social role-playing in his series “Uniformed Workers”. Subjects ranging from police officers to fast-food workers are captured on the job in `heroic’ posed shots. Denying the photographic moment, they stare beyond the viewer, subsumed entirely into the workplace persona determined by their uniforms. Curated and organized by Artcite, the Bezaire/Jones exhibition represents the third successive year in which Artcite participated in Windsor’s annual Labour Arts Festival.
(Jan.17) “ART’S 1,000,041st BIRTHDAY”
Group: 6 Guys Named Joe; aka: Mark & Jen
Gelinas & Company.
Multi-media performance/music/action/celebration/ fund-raiser/binge
“Art’s Birthday” has become an annual celebration/event for the Windsor arts community, presented with a nod to French
fluxus artist Robert Filliou (who first commemorated art’s 1,000,000 birthday on January 17, 1963). In 2004, “Art’s 1,000, 041 Birthday” was marked by a gala celebration at Pogo’s Lounge (a neighbourhood, art-friendly bar). Organized annually by Artcite Inc, “Art’s Birthday” is truly a community-based celebration of the arts, and is presented in cooperation with other organizations in the community such as the Arts Council Windsor & Region, CJAM 91.5 fm, and Common Ground Gallery. In 2004, performances included the contortionist Evann Frisque and music by Six Guys Named Joe, who performed a tribute to the late Joe Strummer and the Clash, Teach Yourself Piano and members of Windsor’s Sexecutives goofball DJ collective. Event proceeds benefited the Windsor arts community.
In co-operation with the University of Windsor Labour Studies Program and the Labour Arts Festival, the 2004 edition of “Art’s Birthday” was also the official reception for the seminar “The New Colonialism”, held earlier in the day at the
University as part of the Labour Arts Festival. Labour activists, academics and artists mingled happily at “Art’s Birthday”.
(Feb.11 – Mar.06): VIDEO/ NEW MEDIA INSTALLATIONS in Artcite Inc. and the Art Gallery of Windsor as part of 10th annual Media City International Festival of Experimental Film and Video Art, an Artcite Inc./ House of Toast presentation (Feb. 11-14)
Group exhibition; video/multimedia installations.
The video projections of Belgian artist David Claerbout use minimal digital manipulations to create a meditative space from the frozen moment of photographic images. What at first appear to be static images subtly change over time, exploiting
the temporal tension between stasis and motion, history and the present. As part of the 10th annual Media City festival, Artcite organized and curated the first Canadian exhibition of Claerbout’s work, featuring two installations presented at the Art Gallery of Windsor (“Vietnam, 1967, near Duc Pho” and “Kindergarten, Antonio Sant’Elia, 1932”). James Patten, curator of contemporary art at the AGW, conducted a walk-through tour during the festival,
on Thurs. Feb. 12.
An additional series of Media City installations was presented in Artcite gallery. Guest curated by University of Windsor instructor June Pak, the Artcite installations combined work from four U. of W. instructors and graduate students with one international component (the video “Worms” by Norwegian artist Lasse Raa). These works used video, sound and sculptural components to examine the human interaction with natural elements (as with John Kuisma’s mercury-filled sound sculpture “converter-translator” and Sherrie Grabish and Andrea Slavik’s ironic view of the moon,”Rockets’ Red Glare”).
Guest artist lecture series; international
Initiated in 1986, the “Visitors in the Arts” (VITA) series provides a forum for contemporary art issues. Visiting artists, critics, curators and other arts professionals present public lectures and conduct private studio visits and workshops.
The VITA program of lectures and studio visits is a vital component of the Windsor art scene and provides an important opportunity for cooperation between visual arts organizations. The annual presentation of the VITA series represents the collaborative efforts of the University of Windsor’s School of Visual Arts, Artcite Inc., the Art Gallery of Windsor, the Common Ground Gallery, House of Toast Film and Video Collective and the Windsor Printmakers’ Forum. By inviting visiting artists representing diverse artistic practices and disciplines, this annual program encompasses the interests and concerns of a broad arts community.
The 2004 VITA was programmed as a special collaborative effort to commemorate the 10th anniversary of Artcite/ House of Toast’s annual Media City International Festival of Experimental Film and Video. The participating organizations in the VITA series used the opportunity to invite international film and video artists to attend during the festival and present lectures, workshops or studio visits in addition to screenings of their most recent work. Participants in the 2004 VITA series were:
Guy Sherwin, London UK
blackhole_factory, Braunschweig DE
Scott Stark, San Francisco CA US (hosted by Artcite)
Abigail Child, New York NY US
David Claerbout, Antwerp BE
Shiho Kano, Tokyo JP
Artcite’s guest, San Francisco film and video artist Scott Stark, presented a live three-channel video work as part of the Media City festival, delivered an audience discussion/ Q & A and conducted studio visits with students at the University of Windsor School of Visual Arts.
Workshop hosted in the gallery exhibition space
During his visit to Windsor for his exhibition at Artcite, (“Cowboys, Indians, Metis”, please see “Current Programming” above) Regina-based artist David Garneau will conduct a writer’s workshop in Artcite gallery on the evening of March 11. In co-operation with Artcite, this event is organized by The Turtle Island Aboriginal Education Centre, the University of Windsor School of Visual Arts and the Art Gallery of Windsor Arts Community Liaison Committee.
Garneau will also meet with the Turtle Island ambassador of the Metis community and conduct a series of interviews on the Education Centre’s community access radio program.
Solo exhibition; painting .
The centrepiece of Garneau’s exhibition is a 32-panel series of paintings in the form of a comic book. Combining text and images from pulp and western novels, the Riel rebellion, cigarette ads, Norman Rockwell, iconic Canadian artworks and elements of the artist’s personal history, the paintings weave multiple (and contradictory) strands of colonial history into an alternative narrative of “How the West Was Won”. By depicting how this story has been told in the popular images of the past particularly how white men have constructed representations of their interactions with Aboriginals these narratives are revealed to be partial representations rather than commonly-held ideas of “History” or “Truth”. Of particular interest to Garneau is how Metis identity is negotiated between the identities/histories of Europeans and Aboriginals. (See also, Events for Garneau visiting artist workshop).
(Mar.26): POETRY READING/ MUSICAL PERFORMANCE with Di Brandt and others
Special event hosted in the gallery exhibtion space
Di Brandt has five published volumes of poetry and has received the Gerald H. Lampert Memorial Award (for the best first book of poetry by a Canadian author) and nominations for both the Governor General’s Award for Poetry and the Commonwealth Poetry Prize. She teaches creative writing and literature at the University of Windsor. Carol Anne Weaver is a prominent Canadian composer/pianist and associate professor of music at University of Waterloo. In an event hosted at Artcite, Brandt will read from her new volume of poetry “Now You Care”, a passionate argument against environmental degradation. “In Brandt’s sharp, sardonic lines, Detroit and Windsor become another wasteland, rendered with a blend of anxiety, fatalism and exasperated celebration. Brandt roams this industrial landscape like a feminist envionmentalist Apollinaire who finds beauty and destruction wherever she goes.” (Pandora Press). Weaver, accompanied by flautist Rebecca Campbell, will perform from her CD “Awakenings” with text by Di Brandt.
Solo exhibition; multimedia
“Chromaplay” is a complete taxonomy of the national flags of the world as displayed by the Lepidoptera sub-species of Pieridae known as Ascia Bunae. Mounted on walls, floor, ceiling and pillars, these dead and dried specimens (all two hundred and fifty six of them) have had their wings marked with a fragment of one of the identifying national political flags of the world. Mimicking both the iconography of national identity as well as small abstract geometric paintings, these creatures are ironically presented with faux-scientific precision as having “evolved” to adapt to the socialized world of Homo Sapiens. Conflating the categorizing fetishes of zoology and nationalism, Wilson’s “new” butterfly species suggests a political context in which discourse
on the consumption of natural resources might be focused.
(Apr.23 – Jun.05): “MEDIA CITY EAST ASIAN TOUR”
Off-site film and video screenings
Fourteen selections of international film and video from Artcite’s annual “Media City” festival will again be presented
(as in 2003 and 2002) in three screenings at venues in Seoul (Artsonje Arts Center), Jeonju (Jeonju International Film Festival) and Tokyo (Filmmakers’ Information Center). Media City Program Director Jeremy Rigsby travels with the program to introduce the screenings and respond to the audiences.
Two-person exhibition; photography and drawing
“James Pierre and Pom Pom” is a narrative photographic series that follows the monotonous life of James Pierre, a lonely middle-aged male living an awkward life in the feminine spaces of his deceased mother’s home. Really a series of staged self-portraits, Prior’s work melds performance and gender issues in a comical and pathetic comment on loneliness and masculinity. Richard Smolinksi’s series of stark, black and white illustrations are described by
the artist as “a visual chronicle of the moral and ethical ambivalence of the male gender”. Smolinski’s grotesque cast of characters are reminiscent of the style and attitude of German expressionism, interpreting the human form as a vessel of social and political history.
Solo exhibition; sculpture
“Pet-à-Porter” is a humorous look at the social and economic relationship between humans and animals. The show is comprised of four discrete series of sculptural works. “Fowl Chic” is a series of nine roasting chickens seductively posed and cast in wax; “Preparing Huey” features eight wax human hands holding animal grooming tools. “Pet Attendants” includes five pet tools and accessories made from leather and “The Cuddling Laps” is a series of laps made of leather,”designed to comfort the skin of one animal with the skin of another”.
Miss the Drive-In? Check out Windsor’s walk-in outdoor theatre, Friday Aug 6 & Saturday Aug 7. The House of Toast Film & Video Collective, Common Ground, the Windsor Feminist Theatre and Artcite Inc. are pleased to present two outdoor evening screenings of rarely-seen Carl Dreyer silent film masterpieces accompanied by live, electronic and original musical scores by the talented CITYWIDE VACUUM and Kent Lambert. Join us for more films at an after party screening featuring films by Bill Brown and Roger Beebe , @ Milk Coffee Bar, Sunday, August 8th. Be sure to call (contact info below) and inquire about the special package deal with CJAM’s/Close Your Eyes: Open Your Ears.
Solo exhibition; multi-media
“Eupholus Bennetti” appears as a demurely patterned expanse of wallpaper. Upon closer inspection it is in fact an installation of 1680 irridescent weevils pinned to the wall with tiny drafting pins. Exploiting the viewer’s contradictory tendencies to be charmed by attractive patterns while being repulsed by “ugly” insects, Angus’ work ultimately calls into question the aesthetic categories of Western culture. Heavily influenced by East Asian cultures and their differing attitudes towards both the value of ornamentation and cultural significance of insects, “Eupholus Bennetti” and Angus’ other insect artworks invoke an openness to the foreign and an awareness of other sources of beauty.
Off-site fundraising project; outdoor exhibit and performance
Following from Artcite’s 2001 “Autumnal Equinox & Bucolic BBQ Bacchanal”, which featured the (sanctioned) burning of four artist-made 20-foot high wood sculptures before a small crowd, in 2002 Artcite hosted the inaugural “Fahrenheit”, North America’s first Fire Festival. 2003 was an important year in the growth of this festival. In its short, 3-year history, the scope and scale of the project has expanded significantly to include a broader selection of contributing artists and a larger audience. “Fahrenheit” 2003, featured 12 fire artists, sculptors and performers from across Ontario and Canada, culminating in a torch-lit, night display of specially-created structures and a final “performing of the fire”. According to the festival co-organizers (the `Control . Burn’collective) “fire sculpture is fleeting, kinetic and encompasses a singular moment that cannot be restaged. It is a performative medium where the lasting value is created beforeand inthe spectator’s eyes. The art work is only completed when it is finally torched and witnessed”. Our
3rd annual “Fahrenheit Fest”, held September 27, 2003, featured fire sculptures and/or outdoor works by: Lee Baker (Saskatoon, SK), Denis Bolohan (Kingsville ON), Pat Conrad (Kingsville ON), Steve Daigle (Windsor ON), Ken Roung (Harrow ON), Ed Janzen (Windsor ON), James Korpan (Saskatoon, SK), Bryan Lane (Espinola ON), Amy Sfalcin (Windsor ON), Rod Strickland (Tecumseh ON), Wayne Tousignant (Amherstburg ON), Melanie Jones (Vancouver BC), Zeke Moore (St. John’s NF) and an audio performance by Thinkbox member Mark Laliberte (Guelph ON).
Inspired by Dutch still-life painting of the 15th and 16th centuries, Susan Bozic photographs stuffed and mounted birds in contrived, theatrical settings far removed from their natural environment. The freedom that birds symbolize is lost in this state, suggesting both the aspiration for and impossibility of experiencing nature “naturally”. Although employing different media and with a very different appearance, Su Rynard’s video installation “Bug Girl” also examines the human self-image as separate from nature. Projected onto a specially-constructed circular screen that evokes both a microscope and a crystal ball, “Bug Girl” is an ecological fable that appears as part science movie and part fairy tale. A young girl accidentally swallows a bee and begins a journey that is both a rite of passage and a visual allegory for contemporary environmental uncertainties, hinting at the connectedness of all living things.
(Dec.01): “INTERNATIONAL DAY WITHOUT ART”
Annually, members of the art community meet at Artcite to discuss activities to be undertaken to acknowledge this international day of mourning and action in response to the AIDS crisis. In the past this has involved the distribution of pins and flyers as well as guerrilla performances and symbolic “closings” of Windsor art activities.
Unjuried group exhibition, annual member show and sale; multimedia.
Artcite’s annual members’ Christmas fundraising show and sale. Featuring 100s of artworks & gift items by Windsor and Detroit artists — nothing priced over $99.99!