From the category archives:

Feature

Breaking into Broken Systems: On Being Marginalized, and the “Politics of Refusal”

by Rea McNamara on May 31, 2016
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On a sunny Sunday afternoon, the second floor of Toronto’s Theater Center was packed with artists for the panel DAMNED IF YOU DO: A Conversation on the Politics of Refusal. Co-presented by local artist-run center Whippersnapper Gallery, the panel focused on stories and strategies from the trenches of the “marginalized”: namely, the tricky pursuit of navigating art and funding systems as an “artist of colour” or “visible minority” or whatever fraught PC term can describe what it means to be a racialized body in the art world.

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Housing Costs Too Much: A Responsive Series of Awkward Dinner Conversations

by Chris Green on May 23, 2016
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“How can you say that affordable housing should go towards artist studios rather than homeless domestic violence victims?”

The question, asked on Monday evening by the Village Voice’s Neil deMause during dinner at a luxurious Chelsea apartment, sent some hands reaching for wine glasses. It was a moment in William Powhida and Jennifer Dalton’s MONTH2MONTH, the public art project running in private residences around the city throughout May, that made the stakes of such a project’s engagement housing uncomfortably clear. The guests at the dinner, a varied mix of artists, patrons and the curious, were faced with a paradox of the liberal sensibility whereby supporting the arts might be tantamount to taking housing away from the truly needy. At least until Powhida announced that he, an artist, didn’t think artists should be given studio space over anyone.The problem is one of affordability. The discussion moved on, drinks were refilled.

In the age of poor doors and museum-sanctioned real estate summits, MONTH2MONTH, produced by MoreArt, asks what role the art community, which is so often viewed as an agent of gentrification, can play in the debate around NYC housing.

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The Sum of Everything: An Interview with Charles Atlas

by Rea McNamara on February 12, 2016
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“The career of the American filmmaker Charles Atlas has been a steady but slow-burning fire for more than 40 years,” wrote Holland Cotter just last year. Despite pioneering the media-dance art form, and collaborating with dancers and performers like Michael Clark, Marina Abramović and Leigh Bowery, Atlas didn’t have his first solo until 1995 at the Museo Nacional Centro de Arte Reina Sofía in Madrid. That’s a big name institution to land a solo with, but it’s only been within the past decade that he’s had a steady stream of solo presentations at institutions and galleries. Those include the Tate Modern, London’s Vilma Gold, and Luhring Augustine in Chelsea.

Why the CV gap? This question naturally came up in the context of Atlas’s recent screening of his early works in Toronto. Organized by Pleasuredome, the event was a cross-section of motion movies, narratives and video featurettes accompanied by a book launch of his first monograph at Art Metropole.

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Who’s Running the Show? On MoCCA’s Shifting Creative Vision

by Rea McNamara on January 13, 2016
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If the Museum of Contemporary Canadian Art (MoCCA) were a book, it’s cover would be looking pretty good right now. The 17 year old institution dedicated to showcasing contemporary artists is in the midst of moving into Toronto’s historic Tower Automotive Building. Expected to occupy 25,000 square feet of the industrial heritage building now being restored by developer Castlepoint Numa, MoCCA’s new permanent home will be the so-called anchor tenant of a new mixed-used community in the Lower Junction neighbourhood. On top of that, the organization hired its first-ever CEO Chantal Pontbriand to bring an international outlook and shake things up. With so many hurdles cleared, MoCCA appears on the verge of becoming one of Toronto’s few international institutional players.

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Your Kid Did Do This: Brian Belott at 247365

by Paddy Johnson on June 12, 2015
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Over at the Lower East Side gallery 247365, artist Brian Belott has opened Dr. Kid President Jr. one of the stranger shows you’ll see this summer—an exhibition comprised of 34 counterfeit paintings of found children’s art. The paintings are hung salon style on the gallery walls and the only clue that they are made by anyone other than a child is their surface. Each is painted with PolyColor on canvas. (PolyColor is a high end version of tempera.)

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How Long Until the Lower East Side Turns Into 1980s Soho?

by Corinna Kirsch on February 4, 2015
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According to LES dealers, brokers, restauranteurs, and residents.

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The Digital Art World’s (Secret) Feminism

by Corinna Kirsch on October 4, 2013
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The major issues facing feminism and digital art go far beyond a numbers game. Seeking a male-female ratio in exhibitions is just one part of an overarching discussion that’s centered around how to present femininity within digital art and how to carve out a space online and IRL, in-print and on blogs, about feminism’s future. In an attempt to move the conversation off Facebook, I surveyed dozens of young artists, curators, and writers who’re actively engaged with the digital art world, and asked them about the major issues facing feminism in the digital art world today. From private Facebook groups to list-servs, there’s plenty of talk about feminism and digital art online, but you might not know about it; you’d have to be privy to these virtual salons.

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The Artists’ Guide to the 2013 New York City Mayoral Race

by Whitney Kimball on August 30, 2013
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The New York City mayoral candidates have been busy staking out their territories; we’ve got the teachers’ and firefighters’ candidate (Bill Thompson), the teamsters’ candidate (Christine Quinn), the health care workers’ (Bill de Blasio), the transit workers and engineers’ candidate (John Liu), the sergeants’ candidate (John Catsimatidis), the retired Irish corrections officers’ candidate (Joe Lhota), and even the pro-weiner constituency (guess who). So, artists, who’s our candidate?

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Nuggets of Queerness: Year 3 of the Fire Island Artist Residency

by Alex Fialho on August 29, 2013
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“The truth of the matter is that there is no one way to tackle queerness, and there is no one way to tackle queer art making,” Evan Garza, co-director of the Fire Island Artist Residency (FIAR), told me during my visit to the residency last week. Now in its third year, FIAR is the only artist residency in the country dedicated exclusively to queer, emerging artists. FIAR co-director Chris Bogia followed Garza’s sentiment, stating, “I always know that there is going to be some nugget of queerness in anything the residents do. The fun thing is seeing how it operates differently.”

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Workbook: Spirit, Matter, Peace

by Sophie Dupont on May 23, 2013
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We invited Copenhagen-based artist Sophie Dupont to spend a month with us in NYC. As the final portion of her residency with AFC she produced an image essay on dance and spirituality.

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