Monday, September 24, 2018

Sunday, September 2, 2018

Curious Glimmers with Julia Louise Pereira & Carpos Collective


CWSE Hallway Gallery, OISE
252 Bloor Street West, 2nd Floor
Toronto. 
Opening: Tues. Sept. 18, 2018, 5.30PM - 7PM and running until Jan 1, 2019.





Many of us are curious about the unknown, wonder about all that glimmers in the firelight. Something magical preys on those of us who have wandering minds. This is the place of folklore.

I’ve been fascinated with monsters and magic since I was a young child, as most of us are, but I did not grow up and away from this fairy-tale mind. If anything, I grew more deeply committed to the “enchanted” story as a writer, an illustrator, and a translator of the emotions and thoughts.

The satyr, once a lustful, male-dominated mythical creature, is now a wistful spirit who is unregulated by common understandings. She is air.
“A child of nature, pure, tame and fearless, but with the brutal instincts necessary to enable [her] to defend [her]self against threats.”

The selkie, usually a hapless maiden of the sea who is coerced into being a bride, now has agency and inspires awe. “Indeed to see a bevy of these lovely creatures, their seal skins doffed disporting themselves on a sea-side rock was enough to fire with admiration the coldest heart.” She is water.

The dryad, depicted mostly as an object of sexualization in classic media, can now live freely and without the restraints of preconceived notions. She is earth. “Long indeed do they live, eating ambrosia and treading the lovely dance among the immortals.” She is air.

I removed the hypersexualization that plagues these classic stories and gave them room to breathe, space to become all of the things little girls wish they could be. Each one of these creatures, the dryad (modeled by Shirls Shuning), the satyr (modeled by Joyce Jodie Kim) and the selkie (modeled by me), became the embodiment of these reworked ideas and dreams.

This series was born as a semi-collaborative piece for my art collective Carpos Collective’s debut show. Using reference images that we took of ourselves, these posters became modeled after my co-founders and me. The screen-printed versions of the illustrations are a labour of love among the three of us. We worked as a unit in my makeshift studio to print 90+ copies of the art. Inspired by my work, and the folktales that captured their hearts, Shirls and Joyce have created art in response which is also presented at this exhibition.

I hope to work like this more in the future, incorporating the magic of a good story, the curiosity of strange legends, and glimmers of hope and love, into every piece I create.

Friday, July 27, 2018

Tiny Homes: Everyone Is Downsizing, WIAprojects@1313/The Window Box Gallery



ARTIFACTS (Pam Patterson & Leena Raudvee) ever cognizant of gender politics and cultural mores, engages in deconstructing various contemporary societal issues by exploring women’s bodies across speculative edges and in liminal spaces. Here, in Tiny Homes, ARTIFACTS playfully references the contemporary tiny homes movement but here the “homes” are uninhabitable. The installation speaks to real (and oftimes painful) issues for many of Toronto’s seniors: the lack of accessible affordable housing and the fear of losing, and the need to discard, a lifetime of belongings.

The Window Box Gallery is open during Gallery 1313 hours - Wednesday – Sunday, 1:00 pm – 6:00 pm , 1313 Queen Street West Toronto, ON. 

Tiny Homes opens August 1 and runs until Sept 30 2018.



Sunday, July 8, 2018

Changes at WIAprojects!


WIAprojects will be leaving the Centre for Women’s Studies in Education at OISE UT on January 1, 2019. The Centre is closing and it is with much regret that our program must leave. We are deeply grateful to the Centre for 14 years of office, storage and exhibition space, research and workshop opportunities, the collegiality of fellow associates, and the extraordinary support of many Centre Heads.

WIAprojects will be continuing to develop projects – in research, publication and exhibition - on an ad hoc basis at different sites across Canada. We will however have an ongoing presence in Toronto thanks to the support of Phil Anderson and Gallery 1313. WIAprojects@1313 will present monthly exhibitions in the gallery courtyard window at Gallery 1313. These exhibitions may be accompanied by courtyard performances.

For 2018 WIA Directors, Leena Raudvee and Pam Patterson will, as co-curators, present a series of 4 window exhibits by provincial artists and designers opening with an ARTIFACTS window, Tiny Homes: Everyone is Downsizing on August 1st. Pamela Dodds will be our November window and Berenicci Hershorn will be exhibiting in December. October TBA.

Starting January 1 2019 to July 2019 WIA Associate Director and curator, Julia Louise Pereira will work with Joyce Jodie Kim and Shirley Shoning as  CARPOS COLLECTIVE  and curate a series of 6 window exhibitions by emerging artists. August 1 will be an anniversary window and the fall 2019 series will feature work by disability artists.



THE CANADIAN POSTCARD PROJECT
Mallory Diaczun

On daily 10-5pm to Sept 2018 

CWSE Hallway Gallery, 2nd floor 252 Bloor Street West, Toronto. 


The Canadian Postcard Project is a nationwide community initiative which connects young individuals (ages 12-20) with Canadian artists. Emerging and established professional artists from across the country participate in a postcard exchange. The project begins with each student choosing an artist/artwork s/he admires and then creating a postcard in reaction to that chosen piece. Once the student artwork is made and mailed, the Canadian artist sends a new artwork, in the form of a postcard, back in response.

Through a variety of classroom lessons that teach the act of looking, describing, analyzing, interpreting, and critiquing, students engage in cooperative learning and collaboration that results in an authentic visual dialogue between young and practicing artists. The Canadian Postcard Project brings Canadian artwork into the public school realm, and helps educate youth on different styles, mediums, and themes countrywide.

Mallory Diaczun is an artist working mostly in sculpture, installation, and community art. Her artwork flows from her love of basketball, as she hand-makes and installs basketball nets on abandoned hoops in various neighbourhoods. As an arts educator, Diaczun uses her love of sports and athletics to engage students who are at-risk. Her focus is to empower youth to build strong relationships with their communities, both locally and nationwide, and to develop a lifelong passion for the arts. Diaczun is currently facilitating a community art project in rural Palmerston, where her students with special needs will be painting murals directly onto the basketball courts and backboards in town.

Wednesday, January 3, 2018

Lillian Allen & Joanna Black: Learning for Social Change

(Joanna Black) Work by Scott Boyko

(Lillan Allen) Photo of HYP by Martin Reid

Opening Feb. 5, 5.30 - 7 pm. Conversation 6 pm
Exhibition runs from Feb 6 - May 4, 2018 9 AM -8 PM daily.
CWSE Hallway Gallery
OISE/UT, 252 Bloor Street West (just east of St. George & Bloor), 2nd Floor, Toronto
FREE and accessible.

Link to images from the opening as photographed and reinterpreted by Miklos Legrady: http://www.mikloslegrady.com/joanna_black/social_change/index.html

While socially engaged art, as a category of practice, is still a working construct, the artist who identifies as such is an individual whose specialty includes working professionally with/in society. Writes Pablo Helguera (2011) in Education for Socially Engaged Art, “Standard education practices – such as engagement with audiences, inquiry-based methods, collaborative dialogues, and hands-on activities – provide an ideal framework for process-based and collaborative conceptual [creative] practices (p. xi).” “Students” facilitated by socially engaged artists/educators become aware of why they are acting and learn how to act in an effective way.
Toronto, dub poet, activist and writer Lillian Allen and Manitoba artist, researcher and educator Joanna Black, as socially engaged cultural workers, facilitate artists'/educators' creative work within precarious and racialized communities. Both women are professors at universities and value partnerships, process, and collaboration toward action-in-community. Their students’ creative activity has been animated, shared and presented locally and internationally.
Each woman mentors young adult students: Lillian Allen works with artists, designers and writers in liberal studies at OCAD University and Joanna Black facilitates emergent teachers in visual art teacher education at University of Manitoba. Their teaching encourages students to focus not only internally in critical and creative making, but also outward among each other and in company with community. A complex dialogue ensues where social critique, understanding, and engagement are valued.
Black’s digiART project provides a venue where emergent teachers, mostly young adults, can examine human rights issues through the creation of new media texts ranging from photographs, videos, and animations to graphic novels and performance art; while Allen’s students develop and facilitate interactive creative writing and art workshops to connect youth to their creative power in context of developing a collective voice. Allen's projects are in collaboration with the Winsom Foundation in Belize and the Hamilton Youth Poets. 

These education–as–art projects aim to democratize viewers, making them partners, participants, or collaborators in the construction of the works. “This is a powerful and positive re-envisioning of education that can only happen in art, as it depends on art’s unique patterns of performativity, experience, and exploration of ambiguity (Helguera, 2011, p. 81).” It is a productive and transformative activity.







Joanna Black would like to thank the University of Manitoba for funding assistance for this project.
Lillian Allen would like to thank OCAD University, the Hamilton Youth Poets, Winsom Foundation.