Sunday, September 21, 2014

That Blue. That Red. That Yellow.

This summer, I had the pleasure of working on community art project Artasia 2014, an annual program of Culture for Kids in the Arts, which is the charitable arm of the Hamilton Conservatory for the Arts. I was technically the curator-in-residence for the project, which was a massive, intense collaboration! The collaborative nature of this project rendered anyone's title moot, basically-- we all did so much, and there was a lot of overlap! Part of this work involved working with Hamilton-based sculptor Svava Thordis Juliusson. Her work produced for Artasia 2014, That Blue. That Red. That Yellow, was a big hit at our preview exhibition and final exhibition at Supercrawl and it was a pleasure to see it unfold in her studio. Here are some shots of it from two separate studio visits, taken in July of 2014.

Monday, July 21, 2014

Tuesday, July 01, 2014

Alexandra Brownell's Sweet Fibre at Needlework

At the beginning of this year, I had the awesome opportunity to visit a 3rd year textiles seminar class at Sheridan College as a guest curator thanks to friend and colleague Thea Haines, an instructor in their department of Crafts and Design.  I gave a talk about my work as an independent curator with a deep love and appreciation for textiles.  I also helped design and present an assignment to students where they were to prepare a submissions package for a call that I wrote around the theme of cotton.  All the students in the class were asked to think critically about cotton-- as a raw material, the history and politics of its production, and its qualities as a textile-- towards proposing an installation that they would create in the window of fantastic Hamilton textile shop, Needlework.

After all submissions were received and graded by Thea, Liz and Kate from Needlework and myself got together to jury the submissions.  Though so many submissions were thoughtful and worthy, we eventually decided on a proposal by the talented Alexandra Brownell who, inspired by archival photos at the Hamilton Local History Archives, created a nostalgic and whimsical tapestry that paid tribute to the carefree quality of cotton, outdoor fairs and the pleasure of summertime. I supported Alex through the process of planning her installation and writing an artist's statement, which was a great experience!

Sweet Fibre went up a few weeks ago, and is up for another week or two.  Spin around to check it out before it's too late! And congrats to Alex on a wonderful first solo show!

Monday, June 16, 2014

Call for Submissions: Repair Centre

New project alert!  Check out the following call for submissions and throw something my way if you're interested!


Repair Centre
at the Peter McKendrick Community Gallery
Artscape Wychwood Barns, 601 Christie Street, Toronto
Curated by Tara Bursey and sponsored by the Wychwood Barns Community Association

Repair Centre invites artists to submit art and project proposals that explore the politics, pragmatics, poetics and aesthetics of repair. This exhibition will take place at the Peter McKendrick Community Gallery in July of 2015.

Drawing on the past function of the Wychwood Barns TTC streetcar repair barns, Repair Centre will examine the function and principles of repair to restore, renew, maintain and heal. This call for submissions invites artists to consider artistic acts of repair as a means of engaging issues related to (but not limited to) architecture, ecology, the material world, DIY, labour, skilling and deskilling, the aesthetics of repair, human relationships, performativity and the borderlands between art and life. This exhibition proposes repair as an opportunity for re-invention, re-incarnation and an experience beyond a simple means to an end.

Please send the following materials for consideration:
-- A project proposal of new work, or a statement about previous work you are submitting for consideration (one page maximum, pdf format)
-- 3-5 jpgs of previous work (72dpi; 1024 x 768 pixels) or web links to video or audio
-- A corresponding image list (pdf format)
-- An updated CV and Bio (pdf format)
-- Contact information

Please send proposals to by July 15th, 2014. Please label all email submissions as REPAIR CENTRE SUB in the subject line.

Friday, June 06, 2014


Ivan Manuppelli 

Guess Who? 


 Colin Clark

Just got this amazing piece of work in the mail today from Abraham Diaz and Yecal Disaster of Ediciones ¡Joc Doc! in Mexico City.  All pages are screenprinted and risographed; the art is by 16 artists from around the globe.  Buy it here!

Monday, May 12, 2014

Recap: Justseeds in Hamilton

Yours truly at top right, DJ Carla Coma at bottom right

Last March, I organized two exhibitions of the work of Justseeds Artist's Cooperative at Homegrown Hamilton (This is an Emergency!) and Hammer City Records (Celebrate Women's Herstory) in honour of International Women's Day.  What started out as an idea for one exhibition soon sprawled into two, along with a couple of amazing community partnerships with SACHA and Centre3 for Print and Media Art.  At the opening party, four lady DJs (including myself and Justseeds' DJ Mary 'Mack' Tremonte) spun records to the point that revelers needed to be kicked out because they didn't want the party to stop.  The opening was seriously one of the funnest nights I've had in Hamilton since moving here just under a year ago and I'm still reeling from all the wonderful feedback about the two shows and the sheer awesomeness of them.

It's been a while since the show closed, and I've been meaning to post here to thank everyone one more time for making this happen.  Thanks first to Mary Tremonte (Toronto-based Justseeds member) without whom the shows would not have happened. Thanks to Mike of Homegrown Hamilton and the amazing Leah and Craig of Hammer City Records for providing valuable wall space, enthusiasm and assistance. Thanks to Carla Coma and Donna Lovejoy for providing amazing tunange. Thanks to Erin Crickett and SACHA for teaming up and spreading the word and Ingrid at Centre3 for helping coordinate the artist's talk with Mary and Jesse of Justseeds.  

The Justseeds shows were in part inspired by the shared enthusiasm for print culture that spans across Hamilton cultural scenes, from art to craft to activism to punk rock.  Evidence of this can be found in retail spaces like Mixed Media on James Street to the DIY merch made by Hamilton punk rockers to the incredible community initiatives of Centre3. I'm proud that the Justseeds exhibitions and events in March (and of course the work of Justseeds) brought these things together in a profound way.

I'll be putting together one more show at Hammer City Records this year!  Not sure what it will be yet, but the goal is for it to be as amazing and fun as the Justseeds shows.  We'll see what I can muster up...

Wednesday, April 23, 2014

Leah Wishnia in MRR

Couldn't resist posting here about this recent interview with Fear of Punk//Fear of Art exhibitor and comic artist/champion extraordinnaire, Leah Wishnia.  Lots of great mention of the Fear of Punk exhibition, and we are thrilled that MRR learned of her work through us-- pretty unbelieveable.

Check out more of Leah's amazing work here.  Also keep an eye out for her interview with me and School Jerks in her comics anthology Happiness this June.

Tea, Talk and Tell at Needlework

At long last, Pulling Strings' next event is on the horizon.  After an incredible month of guest blog posts about essential textile-related publications, PS is launching it's latest initiative-- a textile book reference library-- with a reading and breakfast event at Needlework.  Textile artists Grant Heaps and Kate Jackson, Hamilton-based craft producer and maker Anna Zygowski and past Director of the TMC and lovely local Jennifer Kaye will talk about their favourite textile books in a casual show-and-tell/roundtable discussion.  There will be time to peruse the brand-new reference library's rich (and growing) collection as well, and we will be serving up tasty homemade scones.  Don't miss it!

Tea, Talk and Tell
A Launch Event for the Pulling Strings Reference Library
at Needlework
174 James Street North
Sunday, April 27th, 11 am - 12:30 pm