New Project: Shako Club

Shako Club
Artist: Cindy Mochizuki
Residency Dates: May 1st – July 31st

Grunt gallery’s 30th anniversary programming continues with a new project by Vancouver-based artist Cindy Mochizuki.

Shako club (or social club) is a project initiated by grunt gallery and the artist, and created in collaboration with members of Tonari Gumi (Vancouver’s Japanese Community Volunteers Association), an association serving primarily Japanese Canadian seniors and new immigrants to Canada. With a signature investment in both collaborative and improvisational energies, Mochizuki will spend 3 months in residence at Tonari Gumi, working in their commercial kitchen to create recipes and culinary sculptures that acknowledge equally the influence of cultural background, history, taste, aesthetic value, and an abiding love of snacks.

Through an ongoing series of workshops and taste experiments, Mochizuki and Tonari Gumi members will craft interpretations of the bento box (a traditional Japanese meal set containing a selection of small dishes) that combine culinary and sculptural sensibilities with stories, memories and advice, selected with care.

Mochizuki will document the workshops and process through a series of drawings and recipes available online, and the work will culminate in the distribution of custom-made, edible bento “editions” to members of the public.

For more information on signing up for a bento, read here and fill out the questionnaire.
*Our participant list is now full, all new sign-ups will be placed on our waiting list in case of cancellations.*

Shako club is a project initiated by grunt gallery working in collaboration with Tonari Gumi and the Asian Canadian Studies Society. Special thanks to Imagine BC for funding this project.

Read a conversation with grunt gallery’s Curator of Community Engagement Vanessa Kwan and Cindy Mochizuki:


Follow this project, and read up on recipes and advice at

Screen shot 2015-06-11 at 1.22.04 PM

Japanese Translation:

About the Project: PressRelease Japanese | Fill out the questionnaire.

About the 30th Anniversary
Grunt gallery’s 30th anniversary year is about revisiting histories and acknowledging the unique mix of influences that have shaped us as an institution. The social life of our neighbourhood figures large, and this year we feature projects that extend into the community, and artists who work in and through the networks of relationships surrounding us. Previous projects have included Kitchen by Julia Feyrer, FutureLoss by Zoe Kreye, artist editions by Sonny Assu and Lorna Brown, and an ongoing series of events, publications, discussions and screenings.

Art is social. For more on grunt’s 30th anniversary, and the future, visit

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FutureLoss – Artist Statement


How do we experience change? How do we understand loss? What techniques do we have for digesting these emotions?

I lost my mother 2 years ago and have been struck with how intense the physical experience of loss has been. I actually feel the physical void of her standing next to me or holding my hand. This ache surprised me and invited me to discover how I might fill this void and quench this physical longing.

In the last 30 years Main St. has transformed. Shopkeepers see it as the strip that divides east and west Vancouver, while remaining firmly rooted in the east. They remember it as a working class neighbourhood with practical shops for home repairs, families, fast food and light industrial activities. They have seen many shops close or go upscale and had friends disappear to more affordable boroughs. When I asked them to consider their own future loss, some had a palpable fear attached to rising rents and gentrification while others were nostalgic of their own aging, having grown up on Main Street with their shop.

When we walk down our street and recall the shops that once were and the friends that inhabited them, do these memories move beyond our minds? Do they take up lodging in our bones, in our flesh?  Are they part of our muscle memory? I wondered: does the body long for known and well worn places? Does it crave the bodily repetition of opening the door each day, turning on the neon sign, trimming the flowers, closing the till, cutting the fabric, wrapping the bread, pushing the mop – remembering how to move and exist within familiar settings?

I began walking up and down Main St. to get in touch with this sensation. I started conversations with shopkeepers, often attracted to the ones who seemed to embody their own shop. Through conversation, recommendation and intuition I asked shopkeepers to join me in an experiment to see if we might be able to find where history and loss were located in their shops and in their own bodies. For the curious and the willing I would later arrive with a kit of powdered plaster, mixing bowls, gloves and plastic. We always began with a conversation to recall their beginnings on Main St., their impressions of the change in the neighbourhood, stories from over the years and the evolution of themselves with their business. Our conversation would evolve into a tour that investigated their space in search of a corner where history might have built up: a floorboard that remained as an artifact of the past, a door knob that felt like a nexus for it all. We always found a spot despite initial reservations that such a spot existed. Together we would press the liquid plaster encased in plastic into the void. We would encourage it to take up space, so that it could receive its impression, recall its shape, capture its essence, hold the sensation and mark its structure.

It was very important to me that we also found a corresponding spot on their own bodies where loss might live by creating a pair of cast plaster bones, twins which hold onto the architecture of our built environment and of our internal bodily worlds. I see this collection as a kind of museum of loss, where one might employ an emotional anthropologist / archaeologist. Do we build museums/gallery/shrines as a way to preserve that which is lost?

Recalling my original impulse, the phantom physical longing for my mother after her death, these bare artifacts try to manifest the intangible so that we can still hold it in our hands. These stark white artifacts are reaching out for each other…

– Zoe Kreye, April 2015

FutureLoss | Website

This project is a part of grunt’s 30th Anniversary.

Learn more here.
grunt30 logo sml

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Eraser Street Talk

Exhibition Info | Facebook Event

Visit grunt gallery on Saturday May 9 from 1–4pm for a roundtable on housing and photography in Vancouver. This talk occurs in relation to Henri Robideau’s Eraser Street, currently showing at grunt gallery.

Eraser Street – Hubris, Humility and Humanity in the Making of a City! is an exhibition that mixes Robideau’s newest and oldest photographs of moments, milestones and monuments in Vancouver, tracing the character of the city and its residents during the last 40 years of non-stop growth. The work reflects upon the quality of life in Vancouver, the value of heritage, the economic engine of development, homelessness and the voice of the people. Robideau’s holographic satirical text charts history while critiquing the forces of government and commerce that have had a hand in shaping our urban environment.

Participants in the roundtable include Audrey Siegl, Wendy Pedersen, Lorna Brown, Eugene McCann, Jeff Derksen, Henri Robideau and Clint Burnham. The event will be facilitated by Clint Burnham and is free to the public.

Read the exhibition essay:
Henri Robideau: the Photography of Dispossession
Written by Clint Burnham

——- Bios: ——-

AUDREY SIEGL (sχłemtəna:t in her ancestral name) is a Musqueam activist. She ran as a candidate for Vancouver city council for COPE in the November, 2014 municipal elections, and was active in supporting the Oppenheimer Park tent city. She lives on traditional Musqueam territory at the mouth of the Fraser River and works with the language and cultural department to revitalize the hən̓q̓əmin̓language. Siegl was also active in the Idle No More movement and in organizing the protection of the c̓əsnaʔəm (Marpole Midden) in 2012.

WENDY PEDERSEN is a well-known community organizer who has lived in the Downtown Eastside for more than twenty years. Formerly involved in the Carnegie Community Action Project, she has been part of protests and organizing of residents around the Pidgin restaurant, the Chinatown Height restrictions, DTES gentrification, the Downtown Eastside Local Area Plan (DLAP), and in support of the Oppenheimer Park tent city.

LORNA BROWN is a Vancouver artist and curator who has been producing work for the past 30 years. Active in the Association for Non-Commercial Culture in the 1980s and ‘90s, she was curator of Artspeak from 1999 to 2004. Her curatorial projects include Set Project, a series of exhibitions, performances, and events focusing on rehearsal and re-enactment in contemporary culture, and she was the project curator for Group Search: art in the library, a series of site-specific artists’ projects in the spaces and systems of the Vancouver Public Library (2006-2008). Brown’s art has been exhibited and collected locally and nationally, and since 2009 she has been on the board of Other Sights, a public art initiative, for whom she co-curated (with Clint Burnham) the Digital Natives project in 2011.

EUGENE MCCANN is an associate professor in the Geography Department at SFU. His research interests focus on urban drug policy, urban policy mobilities, urban development and urban politics, and the relationships between urbanization and globalization. Recent and forthcoming publications include Urban Geography: A Critical Introduction (co-ed. with Jonas, A. E. G., & Thomas, M, Wiley-Blackwell), and, with Miewald, C., “Foodscapes and the Geographies of Poverty: Sustenance, Strategy, and Politics in an Urban Neighborhood” (Antipode, Vol 46, Issue 2).

JEFF DERKSEN is an associate professor in the English Department at SFU. His areas of special interest are national cultures and the role of the state in the era of globalization; cultural imperialism and the politics of aesthetics; the poetry and poetics of globalized cities; the emergent global cultural front; culture and gentrification in global-urban spaces; architecture and urbanism; cultural poetics, cultural studies, and cultural geography. Recent publications include The Vestiges (Talonbooks) and After Euphoria (JRP Ringier/ECUAD).

HENRI ROBIDEAU ( is a Vancouver artist and photographer who has been exhibiting locally, nationally, and internationally since 1970. His work has appeared in group and solo exhibitions in Vancouver, Comox, Kelowna, Quebec, York (UK), Washington, Paris, and Mexico City, and is in collections in Houston (Museum of Fine Arts), Ottawa (National Gallery), Seattle (Seattle Art Commission), Surrey (Surrey Art Gallery), Vancouver (Vancouver Art Gallery), and the Canadian Museum of Contemporary Photography, among others.

CLINT BURNHAM teaches in the English Department at Simon Fraser University and has written the catalogue essay “Henri Robideau: the Photography of Dispossession,” which accompanies this exhibition. He is presently writing books on Slavoj Žižek and digital culture and on Fredric Jameson and Wolf of Wall Street. His essays on art have recently been published by the Kunsthalle Wien and on In the winter of 2014-15 he completed a residency with the Urban Subjects collective in Vienna.

——- Exhibition Essay: ——-
Henri Robideau: the Photography of Dispossession
Written by Clint Burnham

——- Exhibition Info: ——

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An Evening in the Archive with Henri Robideau

An Evening in the Archive with Henri Robideau
A Fundraiser for the grunt Archive

Saturday April 25, 2015

at grunt gallery
Drinks at 6:30 pm, Dinner at 7:30 pm
Tickets: $50 | Purchase Tickets here.

You are cordially invited to grunt gallery’s “An Evening in the Archive with Henri Robideau,” a tribute to Henri’s work as a photographer over the past 45 years with special emphasis on his focus on history and the archive. Our fundraising tribute and dinner will coincide with and celebrate Henri’s upcoming exhibition, Eraser Street – Hubris, Humility and Humanity in the Making of a City!, running from April 9 to May 16. Marian Penner Bancroft will speak about Henri’s contributions, as an artist, to Vancouver. Please join us for this special dinner where a selection of digitized videos from our archives, produced for our 30th anniversary, will also be screened.

Over the past five years, grunt gallery has focused on developing its archive and archival projects such as Robideau’s Eraser Street and the recent MAINSTREETERS – Taking Advantage, 1972 – 1982. Since 2010, our special initiative—“Activating the Archives”—has released archival materials in the context of new curatorial projects, commissions, and scholarship, working to create sites such as Ruins in Process–Vancouver Art in the 60’s (2009); ATA – Activating the Archive (2012); Ghostkeeper (2012), celebrating the digital and performance work of Ahasiw Maskegon Iskwew; and Background/ThisPlace (2013).

This fundraiser will focus on grunt gallery’s archival activities and the importance of producing work based in or around archival research. “An Evening in the Archive with Henri Robideau” is  the first of several events highlighting our archive—and other archives—celebrating the work being produced by artists engaged with archives throughout the city.

There will be opportunities to donate to specific programs and projects related to our archive. We look forward to telling you about our upcoming initiatives. grunt’s Archivist, Dan Pon, will be available to present a tour of the archive and share some of his recent initiatives.

For more information contact Karlene Harvey at

grunt gallery | 604-875-9516
116 – 350 East 2nd Ave, Vancouver, BC, V5T 4R8


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After Hours – Photo Exhibit @ Mainspace

CAPIC (Canadian Association of Professional Image Creators) presents- “After Hours”- a photo exhibit showcasing what professional commercial photographers enjoy photographing during their own personal time. A juried exhibit for our members with the mandate: What is your secret passion? What is it you  photograph when you are free to photograph whatever you want?

Organizations Mandate
CAPIC Vancouver is a chapter of the National organization that is the collective voice and advocate for professional photographers, illustrators and digital artists
in Canada. We work hard to maintain industry standards, create a community, fight for copyright protection, and much more. Our work helps all the professionals in our industry. As a professional association, CAPIC’s mission is to promote quality and creativity as well as good business practices. CAPIC continues it’s efforts to support image creators through the creation of resources such as fee schedules and business practice surveys which are designed as a necessary reference for any Illustrator or Photographer getting started in the Industry.

Name and Address of Venue
Mainspace Gallery
350 East 2nd Ave, Vancouver, BC

Date and Time
Opening Reception is April 9 from 7-10 pm the the show will be open 12-5 April
10, 11, 12. please enter through the grunt gallery next door.

This exhibition coincides with Eraser Street by Henri Robideau at grunt gallery. 

Organization or Event website

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Vancouver Art Review: Part 1: “Mainstreeters: Taking Advantage 1972-1982” curated by Allison Collins and Michael Turner

Written by David McLeish, posted on Vancouver Art Review.

Finding the right way to discuss the show currently on at Satellite Gallery, “Mainstreeters: Taking Advantage 1972-1982” has been difficult. I’ve opted to split my review into two parts, the first part dealing with individual works, the second part offering broader reflections. It seemed reasonable to devote two reviews to this show, as it is clearly a major, multi-party undertaking whose contents require and deserve sustained engagement. Still, this review is much longer than I intended.

First, some background. The Mainstreeters (Kenneth Fletcher, Deborah Fong, Carol Hackett, Marlene MacGregor, Annastacia McDonald, Charles Rea, Jeanette Reinhardt and Paul Wong) were a self-described “art gang” who grew up around Main Street in Vancouver’s Mount Pleasant neighbourhood. They became friends in high school and, during the decade covered by the exhibit, they were active participants in Vancouver’s art scene. They worked mainly in video and performance. They also led art workshops, hosted “drag balls,” and dabbled in fashion modeling. Paul Wong and Charles Rea went on to have solo careers as artists, while other members pursued other paths.

[Read the entire review here]

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Drag Ball

After a 30-year hiatus, the legendary Mainstreeters Dragball that transformed Mt. Pleasant is back, featuring Vancouver’s best drag queens, DJs, performers, and Vera Wong as the outrageous Mistress of Ceremonies. Co-presented by The Grunt Gallery.

The Mainstreeters
From 1977 to 1985, the Mainstreeters’ Dragballs began as intimate studio events, developing into elaborate art parties with spectacular décor, performances, and DJs. Shaping an important chapter in Vancouver’s history, the Mainstreeters were an “art gang” of East Van rebels who were fearlessly open about their work, sexualities, and lifestyles, helping to build a Warhol Factory-like scene that still resonates today. This month’s dragball will be a showstopping night of old and new-school gender-bending drag queens, kings, and everything in between. There will be special performances, homages, and awards for Best in Drag—the perfect opportunity to finally express your “other” self and take it to the next level

House rules: Come in drag, or not at all! Bring out your creative best.

Performers: Vera Wang, Maria Toilette, Badkitty Lulu, Dairy Queens, Edward Malaprop, Jane Smoker, and Berlin Stiller.
DJs: HEAVEN record-spinners Trevor Risk & Patrick Campbell.
Visuals by: Paul Wong and Patrick Daggitt.

This event is part of Mainstreeters: Taking Advantage, on view at the Satellite Gallery until Mar 14, 2015.

Saturday, March 7th.
Fox Cabaret
2321 Main St.

Tickets available through Eventbrite.

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Zoe Kreye
Project dates: January 1st – April 30th, 2015
Location: grunt gallery and Main Street
Closing event(s): TBC

Is there a corner where you can feel the change?
Hold this heavy until the weight grows warm.
Is this how we create an artifact we can preserve?

Vancouver-based artist Zoe Kreye interprets sculptural incarnations of loss, here on Main Street. Over the course of 12 weeks, the artist will engage directly with shopowners, organizers and residents in discussions around what it means to hold space in a shifting landscape. Space, on this strip and in this city, is currency, and Kreye’s practice reaches through the overarching narratives of real estate, gentrification and speculation to consider the poetics of an individual’s connection to place. What bodies exist here? What corners? And in between these – what would the loss of one or the other look like?

Kreye’s practice quietly inhabits the street: she will meet with participants in their own spaces, and work with them to create discrete objects and impressions in plaster. These works–abstract, raw, wrinkled, angular– will be combined to form a collective sculptural utterance, a statement from the community that is both abstract and earnest. Not quite documentary, but certainly infused with real bodies and things, FutureLoss is an evolving portrait of this neighbourhood, and this moment in time.

For updates, and to see the work in process, please visit

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Al Neil and Carole Itter’s Cabin: grunt gallery Field Trip

grunt gallery decided to take a field trip to Cate’s Cove to visit Al Neil and Carole Itter’s cabin. Other than Glenn, most of the staff had never visited the little shack located off the water. We first stopped at the bird sanctuary where Ken Lum’s from shangri-la to shangri-la is installed, despite the woods dwarfing the size of the shacks, they are bigger than one might think. By the way, one of these shacks reference Tom Burrows old cabin, he currently has an exhibition at the Belkin.

We then continued up the road to Cate’s Park where Glenn Alteen guided us down a little known path towards the cabin.

Considering all of the media attention the cabin has received recently and the efforts from Glenn and the gang at grunt to help increase much needed attention about this amazing piece of history, it was really important for all of the staff to actually visit the site and get a feeling of what that area was all about.

This is a sort of evolving sculpture, apparently when the King Tide occurred in December, the water rose to the platform of the cabin but luckily pieces from this work remained intact.

The cabin is a single room and it’s heated by a wood stove, it’s entirely made of wood and includes a small kitchen, a living room area, a piano and a bedroom space at the far end.

If you want to keep up with what’s happening with the cabin, ‘like’ the Facebook page here.

You can view the entire photo album here, or simply toggle one of the above photos and click the arrows.


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