Friday, January 23, 2009

Street Poets and Visionaries + What it Really Is Exhibitions

Here are two great-looking exhibitions, found via AKIMBO. There are tons of other great looking shows on right now too; DIYnot? at the OCC, Gretchen Sankey at Paul Petro, Iris Haussler at Honest Eds....if I see even two of the ones I have my eye on, I'll be surprised!...

If I can't make it out, you should!


Talk by UbuWeb founder Kenneth Goldsmith at 7PM preceding the opening reception at 8PM

January 09, 2009 - February 21, 2009
Opening Reception: Friday 9 January 2009

Street Poets & Visionaries: Selections from the UbuWeb Collection, an exhibition of posters and ephemeral writings from the streets of New York City.

In the tradition of Jim Shaw's "Thrift Shop Paintings," this collection of street posters, mad scribblings, political screeds, religious rants, and paranoid raves expands our notion of the Outsider arts to include the written word.

Formally striking, emotionally charged, and bizarre beyond belief, these graphical works dovetail with the historic traditions of concrete poetry and art brut. Seamlessly melding text and image, their obsessive quality evokes Adolf W├Âlfli and Henry Darger's visionary works.

Featured in the exhibition will be the work of David Daniels (1933-2008), a Bay Area poet who created a complex body of work including visual poems using only Microsoft Word. Works from two of his epic series, "The Gates of Paradise" and "Years" will be featured.

UbuWeb ( is the Internet's largest resource dedicated to all strains of the avant-garde, ethnopoetics, and outsider arts, featuring thousands of MP3s, films, books, scholarly papers, and poems.

Mercer Union Centre for Contemporary Art
1286 Bloor Street West
(East of Lansdowne Avenue)


Works in sculpture by Kristan Horton, Liz Magor, Kristi Malakoff, Kerri Reid and Jennifer Rose Sciarrino.

27 January - 28 February, 2009
Opening Reception: Tuesday, 27 January, 6-9 pm

Special event: gallery walk-through with curator Nicholas Brown and artists Kristan Horton and Kerri Reid at Red Bull 381 Projects on Saturday, February 14 at 3PM.

A group exhibition that considers the diversity of sculptural practices amongst Canadian artists whose work reveals a fascination with the world around them. Drawing on sculpture's history of incorporating objects found, duplicated, and manipulated, these artists highlight materials as a means of apprehending, mimicking, and animating elements of the real and perceived world. "What it Really Is" may be an object from the everyday, as in Reid's ceramic replicas of broken teacups, or a vast, primordial form distilled through the artist's imagination, as in Sciarrino's abstracted paper stalactites. But despite the title's evocation of a fixed representational identity-the copy's allusion to the real-in these works we find dynamic relationships between art and life. This is most strikingly apparent in Horton's video, which depicts a series of consumer objects slowly unraveling at the seams and transforming into one another through the process of stop-motion animation. Here, materials turn inwards as much as outwards, revealing the desire to mimic both the outside world and the objects in their closest proximity.

This exhibition is accompanied by a publication with texts by Tejpal S. Ajji, Nicholas Brown, and a conversation between Jen Hutton and Liz Magor.

For more information on the artists and download-able images of their work, visit

Red Bull 381 Projects
381 Queen St. W (Queen & Peter) 2nd Floor
Hours of Operation: Wed - Friday 12pm - 5pm, Saturday 12pm - 6pm

Pictured: A work by Henry Darger

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