Friday, June 05, 2009

I Can't Stop This Feeling: Crisis, Comfort and Craft at MKG 127

This is a great sounding/looking exhibition currently up at MKG 127 Gallery, which I plan checking out within the next few days.  If you're in town, why not take a jog down our fine city's recently maligned Ossington Avenue and check it out too?

I Can’t Stop This Feeling: Crisis, Comfort, and Craft, an exhibition of new work from Toronto/Hamilton based collective, SHAKE -n- MAKE.

Opening Saturday May 30 2-5 PM 

"We grew up in the 70s, in the midst of turmoil and social upheaval. Planes were hijacked, gas was in short supply, the traditional family was in flux, and an American president resigned in disgrace. Through the lens of Afterschool Specials, we saw the world as a crisis waiting to happen; we learned that trauma was just beyond the wood paneled walls of our Rec room. Not surprisingly, we sought comfort in all things homey and homemade. Collectively, an entire culture tried to craft its way back to the 50s, only the tools, and rules, had changed. Try as we may, Betty Crocker’s canned concoctions, macramé and string art, shrinky dinks and felt banners, embroidery and toaster cozies, didn’t make life any simpler or safer. But still we persist."

SHAKE -n- MAKE is a collective that was inspired by the discovery of vintage Betty Crocker recipe cards. On the heels of a personal loss, the unearthing of these retro recipes culminated into a desire to craft a way out. SHAKE -n- MAKE is motivated by a shared experience of growing up in the 1970s, where survival, crafting, and popular culture defined not only an era but also our childhoods.

Claudia Manley is a writer and crafter who is interested in almost everything. She is currently obsessed with sewing and hunting and recently was awarded a Writers’ Reserve grant from Coach House Press. Claudia is interested in navigating the tension between the rustic and the refined.

Liss Platt is a multimedia artist who works at the intersections of digital arts and craft. Liss is interested in using ‘hobbyist materials’ to re-envision high modernist traditions. While exploring compulsion and repetition, Liss retains connections to nostalgia. She is currently an Associate Professor in Multimedia at McMaster University.

Steph Rogerson is a crafter, artist, curator, and academic who believes there is critical power in television. Long-term interests include semiotics, photography, and queer theory. Current interests are Gordon Ramsey, Adam Lambert, and embroidery.

SHAKE -n- MAKE would like to thank Shasti O’Leary Soudant, Ian Manley, Karen Valino, Cecila Berkovic, Liz Abram, and Vesta-la.

The exhibition continues until June 27.

MKG127 is located in Toronto at 127 Ossington Avenue between Queen and Dundas Streets at the NE corner of Ossington Avenue and Argyle Street.

Hours are Wednesday to Saturday from 12 to 6 PM or by appointment.
For more information call 647-435-7682.

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