grunt’s picks | May 20

1) [Vancouver] If you didn’t get a chance to stop by grunt gallery for the exhibition “10 Years of State of Emergency” then fear not. You can still check out the co-exhibition over at Gallery Gachet which runs until Sunday May 25.

Catch up with ATSA on this interview written by Maria Fedorove and Gizem Sozen.

2) [Vancouver] Last week, grunt gallery had a get-together to introduce new staff-members and volunteers. Robert Chaplin stopped by and told us about his exhibition that opened last week, About Time. It’s at the Unit/Pitt gallery until June 28.

3) [Vancouver] Claiming Spaces: Voices of Urban Aboriginal Youth is opening at the Museum of Anthropology on June 1, 2014. The show includes work by a number of indigenous youth artists, it’s probably a good idea to keep an eye on some of these up-and-coming youth artists. The show is curated by Pam Brown and curatorial assisted by Elle-Máijá Tailfeathers. The opening reception has an incredible line-up of musicians and DJs including Skookum Sound System, check it out here.

4) [Vancouver] We’re pretty amazed by the work produced for the Year of Reconciliation project. Many will recognize Sonny Assu’s graphic style on bus shelter posters around the city. But perhaps you’re not as familiar with Gabrielle Hill’s work, she’s involved with a project that includes Tania Willard and Peter Morin. We’re also looking forward to getting downtown to see Krista Belle Stewart’s, Her Story.

5) [Toronto] And to wrap it up, we truly wish we were in Toronto for Rebecca Belmore‘s solo exhibition, Kwe. Did you see it? Let us know on Facebook or Twitter.

Read this recent interview with Rebecca by The Star.
Listen to Rebecca Belmore interviewed on Q CBC.

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Interview with ATSA by Maria Fedorova

Processed with VSCOcam with f2 preset

Photo by Maria Fedorova

Interview by Gizem Sözen & Maria Fedorova

“Maria and I are both interested in the intersection of the arts and politics. After seeing ATSA’s work at grunt, many questions were raised for both of us. This is why we decided to interview Annie and Pierre together.

First of all, ATSA stands for Action Terroriste Socialement Acceptable (Socially Acceptable Terrorist Action). Their interventionist art practices fall under what they refer to as ‘art terrorism’. We were curious what this meant for them. Another big question for us was what they¬—as intervention artists who position themselves where the heart of the street beats—thought about exhibiting at an art gallery.

A third interesting point for us to consider was their inclusion of object-based art forms in the exhibition, rather than relying solely on videos and photographs for giving an affect-based sense of their work on the street.

I could not be there in person, but I worked with Maria to develop the questions and she was able to meet with Annie and Pierre to hear what they had to say regarding their touring exhibition.” – Gizem Sözen

Maria Fedorova:

I want to start with the aesthetics of intervention both in the physical space and in the media realm, as it seems to be very significant for your art. Can you elaborate on how political and social intervention plays a role in your art practice?

Annie Roy:

I think we see ourselves mostly as citizens and we want to speak to our co-citizens. I think if there are more people who want things to change, politicians would have no choice but to take action. We invite politicians to our events, to be part of them, but we don’t do lobbying or we are not exactly activists. Our work is more about a reflection on the social mood or social perception of the problems and we aim to empower citizens for being part of a change.

Maria Fedorova:

So you don’t aim to provoke?

Pierre Allard:

Yes, as artists, we think it is very important that it takes place in public space, to bring provocative images, to shock people. When we work outside on the street and when we bring strong images, what we are trying to reveal gets deeper in the public’s soul. In our art, we try to bring the problems very close to you. So we try to go with the emotions, we try to talk to you. A lot of our work is done afterwards. People who have seen our work, when they leave, they keep thinking about it because of the emotion they had in their encounter with the work.

Maria Fedorova:

Who are you targeting with your artwork— community or governmental authorities?

Annie Roy:

Our co-citizens, and some of them are politicians. Some of them will be sensitive about the same values and some others won’t. But we are apolitical in the sense that we aren’t supporting one political party. We are not into political parties; we are mostly into values.

Pierre Allard:

We work with citizens but at the same time when we are organizing big events, we try to invite politicians so they have to confront the people. In Montreal, there is lots of ticketing, for example; if you spit on the street you get big fines. Some homeless people get over $12,000 [in] fines while they are living on the street! One year, we made a project with another artist regarding the ticketing. We invited the mayor, so the mayor had to take a position.

Art sometimes functions as public voice, as a way to put the problem in media and to make sure people know about it and then that puts pressure on politicians.

Maria Fedorova:

So ATSA goes for socially acceptable terrorist action. We feel that there is tension between “terrorism” versus “socially accepted,” raising public awareness through open critique of governmental policies versus the way you are accepted by governmental institutions. In today’s talk at grunt gallery, you also talked about how you collaborated with Canadian Forces for a project. We are surprised that Canadian Forces agreed to work with you with that name.

Annie Roy:

No, they didn’t. They just thought we are two individuals that wanted to do a refugee camp and it would help them to have a good image. They didn’t know that we were artists, so we convinced them to do this with us without telling them we would have a critical discourse against army. So that was our only terrorism, not to say everything to manage getting what we needed. But later, in the media, we could say, “Look how much money we put in armament instead of taking care of poverty; we could have peace in the world if economy was not depending on war economy.”

Maria Fedorova:

What was the reaction after you announced openly that you did this? Did you receive a reaction from the army or any other authority?

Pierre Allard:

Before they knew we were called ATSA, they wanted to make a big press conference. We were feeling that we were losing the project, they were taking it over. After they learned our collective’s name, they dropped that. That was really good indeed, because I was bit scared that they could manipulate the image of the project. After that we worked with the fire department. Every time, we feel a bit of tension due to our name, but after we explain what we do people want to be part of it.

Annie Roy:

When 2001 occurred, we said, oh my god, are we going to continue with a name like that? We asked the jury and Canada Council and they said you should continue with your name. If you want to speak about how bad our problems are, you have to take a word as strong as the issue you want to talk about. Of course, it doesn’t mean that we think that terrorism is ok, it is the opposite. What we do is art terrorism.

Maria Fedorova:

I was just curious because there are many art collectives in Russia, but this collaboration would never be possible there.

Pierre Allard:

But now with the Canadian army, this would not be possible either. Back then, the Canadian Army was a peaceful army. They were peacekeepers in Bosnia at the time.

Maria Fedorova:

Now I want to talk a bit about this exhibition. Interventionist art has always explored public space and its social and political modalities. ATSA as an art collective aims to address social and political issues, and you use public settings as your site of engagement. For this show, however, you are coming back to a more traditional gallery setting. Can you talk about that and also talk about your experience in a gallery setting in comparison to your experiences in public space?

Annie Roy:

For us, our work is in the street. When we do an art show outside the street, it is in order to look back to what we did on the street, as a second level, in order to prolong the ephemeral experience in the street into a real object. And this object makes us to speak about the street again. So the object becomes a tool. Making an artwork for the gallery is, for us, a way to digest what we produced on the street. It is maybe a way to crystallize something that is very ephemeral.

Pierre Allard:

If we think about found objects that we have been working with or objects that have been on the street with us, they have a story of their own since they were there, so that is what we like about them. One of them is a cover of a bucket for a soup. We did serve soup there with it, so it was part of the project.

Annie Roy:

It is a bit romantic.

Pierre Allard:

We have produced so much in 12–15 years. We produced so much art in collaboration with other artists and homeless people. With this exhibition, we wanted to show all of these. To see this art in the camp or on the street is different because there you are overwhelmed with the distress of the reality. Now here, seeing the exhibition and talking about homelessness, it is easier to an extent to understand the work since you are bit withdrawn from the reality.

Annie Roy:

Here you see the art for the art, so it is another kind of experience, an experience more protected, calmer, more isolated from the problem. But because you are bit detached from it, you may think calmly, in a different way.

Pierre Allard:

And since there are over 25 works and there are so many layers, you can have a different perspective of the same subject. So the exhibition is working pretty fine, I could say.

Maria Fedorova:

So speaking about the ephemerality of your work on the street, for this exhibition you decided to show object-oriented art works, which is not a conventional way of documenting process-based art or ephemeral art practices. Of course you do have video and photographs, but you are also displaying blankets, for example. It is interesting: we think that you are trying to communicate the experience that was out there. Could you comment on that?

Annie Roy:

It is about a mix of an emotion you can feel from an art piece. It is a balance between to know what happened and also almost just having a sense of the ambiance. Also they reveal the contrast of emotions we experience at the camp—lots of difficulties but at the same time lots of joy for being there and being together, eating well. So it is a contrast between joy and distress, political difficulties to make it happen and our happiness to offer such a thing. We try to make an art piece that speaks about the project, speaks about our intention behind the project, like the blanket piece.

Maria Fedorova:

My last question is about the oven, La Banque a Bas. I think it is a great metaphor, this connection to the ATM and the way you installed it. So you installed it in front of the Museum of Contemporary Art in Montreal. Could you please comment on this decision? And talk about your collaboration with the museum?

Pierre Allard:

It was about the state of art in Montreal; that was the show. There was a lot of criticism about the fact that none of the artists who were doing street work were in the show. Also the museum was at Place des Arts. So this is the biggest place for arts, it is downtown and facing all the banks.

Maria Fedorova:

So you collaborated with the museum after that?

Annie Roy:

Mostly with the people in the communication department. Firstly, we learned that the director of the museum was an ex-Jesuit priest. So when he saw our piece, it moved him in a humanitarian way. And I think he thought, “Yes, they are right, there is nothing about what is happening in the public space,” and I think in the end they were happy.

Pierre Allard:

Yes, it worked out, but I know that we disturbed some of the curators of the museum.

Annie Roy:

Of course, because we criticized their choices. And some artists also probably were not so happy because we took a lot of media attention doing it.

Pierre Allard:

Closing of the La Banque that year made a big event in the museum. Then it allowed us to do a new project after that. And then we changed location but they still gave us some services in communication the year after, when we were not there anymore.

Maria Fedorova:

It was also part of your ideology to be there on the street and not somewhere else.

Annie Roy:

Yes, we have to be where people are and where it is central. That is where it hurts.

10 Years of State of Emergency is co-presented with Gallery Gachet. The exhibition at grunt gallery runs until May 17th, the exhibition at Gachet runs until May 24th. grunt gallery is open Tuesday-Saturday from noon-5pm.

Read more about the exhibition here.

About Maria Fedorova:

Photographer, curator, Maria Fedorova holds a BA in Linguistics and Communications from International University in Moscow and is currently a Master Candidate at the School of Interactive Arts + Technology at Simon Fraser University, Canada. Maria’s interests include Russian and international new media art with a particular focus on performance and video as well as politically and socially engaged practices. She is a co-founder of ARTinVANCOUVER, social media and cultural platform that represents an intersection of art, design, technology.

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grunt Board // David Khang: Wrong Places

David Khang is a board member at grunt gallery. Check out his upcoming exhibition in Toronto, Ontario.

Wrong Place / Mauvais Endroit / Lugar Incorrecto /틀린 장소

UPCOMING exhibition @ A Space Gallery
401 Richmond St., Suite 110, Toronto Ontario, M5V 3A8, (416)979-9633, Tuesday to Friday, 11-5, Saturday 12-5.

Exhibition: May 16 – June 14, 2014
Opening reception: Friday May 16, 6 – 8pm
; Performance: 7pm

Exhibition essay by Dina Al-Kassim

Wrong Place / Mauvais Endroit / Lugar Incorrecto /틀린 장소 is an ongoing series of site-specific public works that are performative.
By researching geopolitical histories, seemingly disparate political events are ‘remixed’ – cross-culturally and linguistically. Performed in various international sites – Nicosia (Cyprus), Santiago (Chile), Valdivia (Chile), Mexico City (Mexico), Edmonton and Montréal – each iteration centres on an iconic public speech, which is translated, then enunciated in multiple languages.

The result, at once dissonant and consonant, is intended to question our historic amnesia, and to trigger a re-imagining of their historical interconnectedness and continuing relevance to contemporary culture and geopolitics. At A Space Gallery, the work becomes a multimedia installation based on the original performances: painted military fatigue, flag-like photographs, a bicycle-powered mini-tank, and videodocumentation of the original site-specific performances.

David Khang’s Website.

David Khang, Latitude 53, Visualeyez 2008
WrongPlacesWrong Place / Mauvais Endroit / Lugar Incorrecto / 틀린 장소 2014

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Deadline extended for the Santa Fe Art Institute International Residencies Program New Deadline:
Friday, May 23, 2014

The Canada Council for the Arts Santa Fe Art Institute Residency is open to receive applications.

The International Residencies program supports professionals in the visual arts which include visual and fine craft artists, as well as independent critics and curators in furthering their artistic practice in an international context.

Santa Fe Art Institute, New Mexico ( Santa Fe Art Institute (SFAI) is a nearly 17,000-square-foot complex located on the College of Santa Fe campus.
SFAI’s facility includes gallery/exhibition spaces, 5,100 square feet of studio space with skylights, housing for residents, a library, courtyards, laundry facilities, a full kitchen, and dining and living room areas.

Santa Fe is an historic hub of Aboriginal visual arts activities including the School of Advanced Research, which houses the Indian Arts Research Center as well as the Institute of American Indian Arts. It is also home to the Museum of Contemporary American Native Art, as well as the famous market place, the Indian Art Market.

This residency component is dedicated to Canadian Aboriginal artists and curators of First Nations, Métis and Inuit origins.
Two residencies are awarded to an Aboriginal visual artist and /or curator for a period of three months each:

• October 2014 to December 2014
• June 2015 to August 2015

The total grant amount of $15,000 applies to the resident’s expenses. Residency and accommodation fees, for single occupancy, are supported by the Canada Council for the Arts (Visual Arts Section and Aboriginal Arts Office) and Santa Fe Art Institute.

Your program of work should be limited to two pages maximum and include: your practice (previous and current work), the program of work you intend to undertake at the residency and the potential impact of the residency to your artistic practice. You must also include a résumé (three pages maximum).

For visual and fine craft artists, you must include visual support material: 15 digital images or one video (maximum 10 minutes long), or a combination of 10 images and one video (maximum five minutes long).

For independent critics and curators only submit three excerpts of your published texts, articles or catalogues (maximum of 10 pages for each excerpt). You may also submit visual support materials documenting your previous work and the work of the artists who will be the focus of your research.

For more information contact Program Officers:
Jennifer Cherniack
1 800-263-5588 ext. 4122
Jim Logan
1 800-263-5588 ext. 5266

You can submit your project by email until Friday, May 23, 2014 at

Please indicate in your email what residency period you are applying for: October 2014 to December 2014 OR June 2015 to August 2015.
For more information, please go to:

VIEW PDF – Santa Fe Extension


Q & A with Tarah Hogue

Get to know our curatorial resident Tarah Hogue! Tarah started her position with grunt gallery in April and she’s already started to take on a number of different projects and plans that will unfold over the next year. Learn more about her, what Tarah has done in the past and what kinds of projects she’s working on at grunt in the near future.

How long have you lived in Vancouver? What brought you to the city?

I’ve lived in Vancouver since late 2008 – I moved to the city after graduating from Queen’s University because my two best friends were living here and attending Emily Carr. I applied to the Curatorial Studies program at UBC but ended up working for a year and opening the Gam Gallery before I got accepted.

You founded Gam Gallery in 2009. What was your vision for creating this space? How has it changed or shifted?

Photo from Gam Gallery’s instagram

I started the gallery with three of my close friends from back home in Alberta – two artists, a musician and myself. We had talked about the idea of starting a creative multi-purpose space for some time but the opportunity came when we happened upon the space in the ACME Studios building where we are still located (110 E. Hastings). It was available for rent and so we kind of just jumped into it. Initially we did anything and everything to pay the rent: we threw parties, hosted experimental theatre, put on artisan markets, curated exhibitions, had band nights, film screenings, model drawing, games nights – you name it. The idea was and always has been to create a social environment for emerging artists to make, share and (sometimes) sell their work, but our operations have definitely become more streamlined. We currently have about ten artists that work in the studio space (meaning we have fewer crazy parties) and we focus on our exhibitions and the boutique a lot more, which features local designers, jewelry, ceramics, art prints and more. We still do games nights and have music at the gallery from time to time, but focus more on programming that complements our exhibitions. There are just two of us that run the space now – myself and my partner, Julia Kreutz, so we have to be more selective and efficient with our time (we both have three jobs!).

What past exhibition that you curated are you most proud of?

Working on the Witnesses: Art and Canada’s Indian Residential Schools exhibition at the Belkin Art Gallery as a co-curator was an amazing experience. I had worked at the gallery while doing my MA and Scott Watson (the gallery’s Director) asked me to stay on for the project. The curatorial team, the artists, and the programming all had a profound impact on me, both professionally and personally.

Lisa Jackson, Savage (video), 2009. Production-still photo: Kris Krüg.

What drew you to grunt gallery?

My interest in performance art and the production of indigenous artists brought me to grunt as soon as I moved to Vancouver. The programming here is really important in presenting contemporary art that deals with social issues and there is also a level of community engagement that is really impressive; these are values that I want to build my curatorial practice around.

Who inspires you as a curator or artist?

The more I encounter the work of fellow indigenous artists and curators the more I am impressed and overwhelmed by the scope of talent and intellect that is out there – in other words, it’s a long list. Personally, I find Richard Hill’s curatorial work and writing to be really ground breaking. I had the pleasure of hearing David Garneau speak at the Witnesses symposium in September and think his work is crazy and amazing. My favourite artist has always been Rebecca Belmore, her strength and the silence in her work have been a great source of inspiration for me. People like Tania Willard, Dana Claxton, Charlotte Townsend-Gault, and Peter Morin… I could just go on!

What are some projects you’re planning on working on with grunt gallery?

I will be working on some of the planning around the gallery’s 30th anniversary activities, which I am very excited about. I will also be curating a show from Dazibao in Montreal called Épopée, which is a series of videos produced by Rodrigue Jean who was doing a documentary on male sex workers in Montreal. He later developed a program to allow the workers to produce their own videos and we will be screening these in conjunction with the Queer Arts Festival in July. I will also be doing my own research on the topic of indigenous feminism for a potential exhibition, for which the grunt’s archives will be a fruitful resource!

What exhibition have you seen in Vancouver that went above and beyond what you expected of it? Or what you thought it could be?

The largest exhibition that comes to mind is the Marian Penner Bancroft exhibition at the VAG in 2012. I was just floored by her work and the level of personal narrative that she uses. I can imagine that she would have faced criticism for this at some point in her career and it stands in contrast to the academic/intellectual tradition of art making in Vancouver that is dominated by a few key male artists. I think her work is really important for this reason, though it is powerful in its own right as well.

Outside of the art scene, where can people find you?

I sing and play percussion (tambourine, etc.) in a country-rock band, Those Boys Cassidy. We are just finishing up a three-song EP, which is our second release. I also plan to spend as many weekends as possible camping and fishing this summer. I just caught my first trout on the Easter long weekend and want to get back out there for more.

Anything else?

I am very fortunate to be working with grunt and I look forward to rolling up my sleeves and getting into it – and hope to meet you all in the coming months.

Tarah Hogue Bio:

Tarah Hogue is a writer and curator of Dutch/Métis ancestry. She holds a Bachelor of Art History from Queen’s University and a Master of Art History in Critical Curatorial Studies from the University of British Columbia. Hogue has curated a number of exhibitions in Vancouver, including No Windows at the Satellite Gallery in 2011 and her practicum exhibition, Facing the Animal, at the Or Gallery in 2012. She has recently co-curated two exhibitions about Indian Residential Schools in Canada: Witnesses: Art and Canada’s Indian Residential Schools at the Morris and Helen Belkin Art Gallery, and NET-ETH: Going out of the Darkness with Malaspina Printmakers. In 2009 she co-founded The Gam Gallery, an exhibition space and artist studio located in Vancouver’s Downtown Eastside.

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Welcome Tarah Hogue + Meet Renee Mok

grunt welcomes Tarah Hogue

grunt is excited to welcome Tarah Hogue as our curatorial resident! Tarah is no stranger to the Vancouver Art Scene; she recently worked with the Belkin to co-curate the Witnesses exhibition and she’s also the co-founder of Gam Gallery. Read her bio below, and be sure to say ‘hi’ the next time you see her at grunt gallery.

Tarah Hogue is a writer and curator of Dutch/Métis ancestry. She holds a Bachelor of Art History from Queen’s University and a Master of Art History in Critical Curatorial Studies from the University of British Columbia. Hogue has curated a number of exhibitions in Vancouver, including No Windows at the Satellite Gallery in 2011 and her practicum exhibition, Facing the Animal, at the Or Gallery in 2012. She has recently co-curated two exhibitions about Indian Residential Schools in Canada: Witnesses: Art and Canada’s Indian Residential Schools at the Morris and Helen Belkin Art Gallery, and NET-ETH: Going out of the Darkness with Malaspina Printmakers. In 2009 she co-founded The Gam Gallery, an exhibition space and artist studio located in Vancouver’s Downtown Eastside.

grunt gallery and Tarah Hogue would like to thank BC Art Council’s Early Career Development Program.

Meet Renee Mok

grunt gallery would like to introduce our intern, Renee Mok! Renee is a 4th year English Literature major at UBC. grunt found Renee through the Arts Co-op Program; she’s currently working on an eBook with grunt’s co-founding member, Hillary Wood, and our archives assistant, Audrey MacDonald. The eBook is for grunt gallery’s 30th anniversary celebration and you can expect it to be launched this Fall.

She has experience in marketing and communications and has worked as a Communications Intern for the Canadian Mental Health Association and the Centre for Teaching Learning and Technology at UBC. Renee enjoys writing and design and aspires to find a job in communications after she graduates.

grunt gallery has been extremely fortunate to find such a resourceful, hard-working intern that was capable of teaching herself how to create an eBook from scratch (amazing!). grunt gallery would like to warmly congratulate Renee as she is graduating from her degree program this May.

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Play, Fall, Rest, Dance

playrestfalldance info new cover

About the Project

Artist Valerie Salez invites children to art-making sessions to re-imagine their environment. Every child is encouraged to use fabrics, paint and repurposed materials from Salez’ previous projects. The children respond to the imaginative spaces they create through movement, dance, sound and play. The artist thoughtfully guides the children to explore their creative processes.

Looking For Youth

We’re partnering with KickStart Disability Arts and Culture to find youth with disabilities to participate in this exciting incarnation of Play, Fall, Rest, Dance. We are looking for four to six children between the ages 6–12 years old. The artist will work one on one with the child (with attendant or parent in attendance if needed).

Email Meagan Kus at grunt gallery if you have any questions or would like to register your child for this project, this is a free project and there is no associated cost to register. You can also reach grunt gallery by phone at 604-875-9516.

Where & When

The project will take place at grunt gallery. We’re located at 116-350 East 2nd street, Vancouver BC. We’re a few blocks from Main Street and a short walk away from the Main Street Skytrain station.

Sessions will happen one to two times per week, the artist will schedule sessions with the children based on their availability. The sessions will be 2-3 hours in length. Transportation support can be provided on request.

DOWNLOAD “Play, Fall, Rest, Dance” Information Booklet.


About the Artist

Valerie Salez brings Play, Fall, Rest, Dance to Vancouver following a successful residency with Open Space (Victoria, BC) last year. At Open Space she worked one on one with over 20 children, guiding children to produce countless installations and performances.

Her experience with working with children and the arts includes:

>> Arts Reach (instructor: special large scale art projects in underfunded public schools- Vancouver Island)
>> Selkirk Montessori (artist in residence: work on art projects with kids with special needs and disabilities- Victoria, BC)
>> Victoria West Community center (artist in residence: working on art projects with small children- Victoria, BC)
>> Robert Service School, Dawson City, Yukon (artist in residence as special guest art teacher: two years working with at-risk and special needs First Nations children and youth)
>> Artist in the schools Victoria, BC and Yukon (special art projects in public schools in Victoria and all over the Yukon territory)
>> Canada Winter Games- National Artist Program – Whitehorse, Yukon (mentored youth in producing art works for large scale exhibition)
>> This Town is Small – Charlottetown, PEI (mentored youth artists to make work for outdoor art festival)

Learn more about Valerie and her art practice on her website.

grunt gallery

grunt is an artist-run centre founded in 1984 in Vancouver, BC. We have a long history of supporting creative, challenging, and innovative projects and exhibitions. grunt hosts youth-based projects on an annual basis. In 2013, we worked with artist Desiree Palmen and 7 Aboriginal youth on the project MAMOOK IPSOOT (To Hide or Make Hidden). Learn all about it here: We are incredibly excited to host Salez and her incredible project Play, Fall, Rest, Dance.

Kickstart Disability Arts and Culture

KickStart Disability Arts & Culture (formerly the Society for Disability Arts and Culture) was incorporated in November 1998 in Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada. Kickstart’s mission is to produce and present works by artists with disabilities and to promote artistic excellence among artists with disabilities working in a variety of disciplines.

Read more about Play, Fall, Rest, Dance on Open Space’s website:

“When a child arrives inside Salez’s studio, shouts of delight mingle with the occasional flute melody echo throughout the building, further enticing an audience to observe the young artist at work. Instead of a planned activity, Salez allows the children the freedom to select their own medium and materials. The child is left with limitless possibilities, encouraged to use their boundless imagination.”

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Double Book Launch

Stop by grunt gallery to refresh your spring reading!

Thursday April 24 (6-8pm) at grunt gallery
dbl-book launch-01

Find yourself a copy of the ‘Mamook Ipsoot (To Hide or Make Hidden)’ book and Art Cards. The book describes how the youth project approached art-making through a conceptual lens and explores the relationship between indigenous youth and Vancouver’s landscape. It includes a foreword by Glenn Alteen and an essay by community arts coordinator, Jolene Andrews.

Stop by to feast your eyes on the ‘Don’t Go Hungry – Be Hungry’ booklet. This publication features a new essay by Tania Willard and includes beautiful photos from the Don’t Go Hungry exhibition by Bracken Hanuse Corlett and Csetkwe Fortier.

We’ll be offering lots of great deals on past publications, check out our online store to see what we have available:


grunt YouTube:

Watch Bracken Hanuse Corlett and Csetkwe Fortier talk about, “Don’t Go Hungry”.

Learn all about the “Mamook Ipsoot (To Hide or Make Hidden)” project:

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Two Walls [ATA article]


Ken Gerberick, Crushed Wall (1992)

Laura Moore’s exhibition, one man’s junk, showing at grunt until March 22nd, looks at the product of consumer waste and discarded objects. In this exhibition, Moore uses limestone as a canvas to document discarded electronic objects, such as old computer monitors, that most tend to overlook. Looking through grunt’s archives, you will find that this theme of artists critiquing consumer waste features prominently in the history of the Vancouver art scene. The themes of consumption and discarded objects are particularly evident in the 1992 grunt exhibit Two Walls by Vancouver assemblage artists Ken Gerberick and Marcia Pitch. The artists’ respective pieces, Crushed Wall and Off the Wall, which filled two walls in the grunt space with found objects, expressed an overwhelming feeling that society was mired in over-consumption, consumerism and waste.

Gerberick’s industrial themed objects versus Pitch’s toy themed works created a striking juxtaposition of discarded objects, affording viewers no escape from their complicity in the issue at hand. The assemblage art aesthetic featured prominently in the grunt archives during the late 1980s and ‘90s, but this aesthetic seems to have dropped out in the mid-‘90s. Gerberick and Pitch both identify rising rent prices as one of the contributing factors to this decline, making it more difficult for artists and galleries to exhibit this type of show, and note that assemblage pieces generally are not of interest to commercial galleries.

When asked about how he responds to people questioning the validity of assemblage art, Gerberick replied that he expects it:

“I mean, it’s funny too, because anybody that figures out which end of a paintbrush to use can slop paint on canvas. Some people do it really well; an awful lot of them don’t. Assemblage art is the same way. I mean, bad assemblage makes me just want to go back to doing silverpoint illustration, which I used to do. A lot of people figure ‘ah, you find something and you glue it down and there you go.’ It’s like abstract art, and I love abstract art, and bad abstract art just sucks.”

Gerberick, coming from a punk tradition, feels that if his work does not challenge or discomfort people then it’s probably not incisive enough. He sees a connection between assemblage art, Dada (Kurt Schwitters being his hero) and punk/noise music. The central concern, of course, in these forms of media is the control over materials. It allows the artist to disassemble and reassemble things in ways the original creators did not intend.

Marcia Pitch

Marcia Pitch, Off The Wall (1992)

Pitch discussed a common interest in using sound in her practice, but expressed that “it’s not sound in an electronic kind of way and the stuff that I like is sort of low brow or low tech. I like technical but the low; you know, the transistors and the wires and the grooves and nuts and the bolts and that kind of stuff.” She draws inspiration from children’s toys, particularly the older, less mass-produced toys that allow for a total transformation of the object— “you know, the plastic and all that stuff that people really hate, I love to work with.” Pitch noted that the materials found in these older, more generic toys tend to have a warmer, more human and less technical quality to them. As an artist who gathers the majority of her materials from secondhand stores, she has noticed that the increase in demand for ‘vintage’ objects is leaving her with fewer materials to work with, but what she finds most salient is what people are discarding:

“I guess the stuff that people throw away is new – like, you know, toasters. Anything that’s broken is never fixed, because it’s more expensive to fix than to replace. But I haven’t been able to use that stuff, because there’s no human element to it for me.”

There is a unifying theme seen ion the work of Gerberick, Pitch and Moore, mainly their concern with making viewers aware of their own complicity in consumerism, consumption and waste production. The changes in the “junk” we consume and dispose of has made it more difficult for assemblage artists to remove or distort the industrial/technological stamp of the image. Moore faces a similar dilemma, and by creating these objects in limestone she is able to bring a more human element into these ubiquitous plastic machines.

Marcia Pitch’s Between Madness and Delight will be showing at the Reach Gallery Museum on September 25th, 2014.

About Audrey MacDonald:

Audrey moved moved to Vancouver after graduating from the University of Alberta with a degree in Physical Anthropology and Linguistics. She’s enrolled in the Art History Diploma program at UBC and began volunteering at grunt and the Vancouver Art Gallery shortly afterward to become more familiar with the Vancouver arts community. She is currently a docent at the VAG and continue to work on the labour of love that is the grunt archives.

This past September, Audrey started an Internship at the SFU Museum of Archaeology and Ethnology where she is working as the Curator of Archaeology, Research and Collections Care Management. She is interested in public programming and creating inclusivity within the arts.

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