Tuesday, November 19, 2013

Introducing Pulling Strings!

In the middle of the whirlwind of exhibitions happening this month, this little golden nugget is launching and I am very excited-- it's a project that has been in the works for a while.  Pulling Strings is a collective and quarterly event series organized by Jen Anisef (who I worked with on Toronto Craft Alert), Thea Haines (who's art I've always admired) and I.  The aim of Pulling Strings is to "investigate contemporary cultural themes through textile-linked lectures, panel discussions, exhibitions, workshops, and fieldtrips.  Motivated by a belief that textiles tell us a lot about our culture, and inspired by Hamilton’s creative community’s contribution to downtown renewal and civic engagement, Pulling Strings aims to create an accessible and dynamic space for people of various stripes to come together and engage in the exchange of ideas."

I'm really proud and excited to continue my critical work with textiles through this project, and to situate it in Hamilton, my new home.  Our first event is a talk and workshop with artist, educator, publications maven and crochet fiend Shannon Gerard, and it's happening this Saturday.  Don't miss out-- details about the event and pre-registration below.

AND an additional side note for Torontonians-- the Hyperbolic Crochet Coral Reef project (Shannon is a contributor) will be showing in the Gallery 1313 window box for the month of December!


After months of coffee shop scheming and logo napkin doodles, we are pretty dang excited to be getting Pulling Strings off the ground with a talk and workshop led by Shannon Gerard! Shannon was a natural choice for a first speaker in the series – her playful approach to her practice is never stuffy or alienating but always makes you think about things not previously considered – exactly what we are trying to achieve with Pulling Strings.

Next Saturday (November 23) Shannon will give a talk and Q&A at the Hamilton Artists Inc, followed by a hands-on workshop at Needlework. We are super grateful to both spots for giving Pulling Strings, a roving series, its first home.

Recognized for her engaging teaching and speaking style, Shannon will share the evolution of her crochet practice from recognizable objects with a decorative or educational function to forms that graph concepts of hyperbolic space or chart biographical and emotional journeys.  Following the talk, anyone is invited to push the boundaries typically associated with crochet as a functional pastime in a conceptual crochet workshop - no crochet experience necessary! As spaces are limited, we'll need you to register beforehand by emailing us at pullingstringshamilton@gmail.com.

Here are the details:
Who: Shannon Gerard (http://shannongerard.tumblr.com)
When: Saturday November 23, 2013; Talk and Q&A (2:00-3:30pm); Workshop (4:00-5:30pm)
Where: Talk and Q&A – Hamilton Artists Inc. 155 James N Hamilton, ON (@ Cannon); Workshop – Needlework, 174 James St N Hamilton, ON
Cost: Talk - FREE; Workshop - $10
Registration: Talk – all are welcome, no RSVP required; Workshop – contact pullingstringshamilton@gmail.com to register.

A bit about Shannon: In addition to teaching courses in print media and nano-publishing at OCAD University in Toronto, Shannon Gerard makes artist's books about magic, hope, faith and human frailty and produces large-scale installations that incorporate stop-motion animations and digital print. Shannon spends at least 50% of her waking life crocheting soft sculptures, which include Boobs and Dinks, Plants You Can’t Kill, and contributions to the Toronto Hyperbolic Coral Reef.

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