Exhibition Location: Satellite Gallery (560 Seymour, 2nd Floor, Vancouver, BC)
Mainstreeters: Taking Advantage, 1972-1982 is an exhibition, website and publication that takes a close look at a self-identified collective of socially and artistically motivated men and women who came of age on Vancouver’s Main Street—once the dividing line between a predominantly Anglo middle-class west side and a multicultural working-class east side. The exhibition at Satellite Gallery contributes to the larger project of bringing to light an under-recognized chapter of Vancouver art history.
The Mainstreeters—Kenneth Fletcher, Deborah Fong, Carol Hackett, Marlene MacGregor, Annastacia McDonald, Charles Rea, Jeanette Reinhardt and Paul Wong—were an “art gang” who took advantage of the times, a new medium (video), and each other. Emerging from the end-stage hippie era, the gang drew from glam, punk and a thriving gay scene to become an important node in the local art scene. Their activities connect the influential interdisciplinary salon of Roy Kiyooka in the early 1960s with the collective-oriented social practices that emerged worldwide in the early years of the 21st century.
Like the current “digital natives” generation, the Mainstreeters were the first generation to grow up with video cameras. The resulting documents bring into focus a decade of their lives, including forays into sex, love, drugs and art.
Mainstreeters: Taking Advantage, 1972-1982 is curated by Allison Collins and Michael Turner and is a coproduction of grunt gallery and Presentation House Gallery. The exhibition is presented by Satellite Gallery. Mainstreeters launched with the December 2nd release of a video documentary chronicling the lives of the group. On January 8th the exhibition opens at Satellite Gallery along with the launch of the website, featuring selected images, videos and texts. Throughout the exhibition, Mainstreeter videos will be presented in storefronts along Main Street, and the project will be complemented by a publication featuring photographs and documents to be released in summer 2015.
Video: Watch the Mainstreeters: Taking Advantage, 1972-1982 documentary featuring footage from the Mainstreeters’ archives and new interviews with a number of the Mainstreeter artists. vimeo.com/gruntgallery/takingadvantage
Video Direction, Editing and Production: Krista Lomax
Mainstreeters: Taking Advantage 1972-1982 | Full Video from grunt gallery on Vimeo.
Mainstreet Tour Documentation:
Remembering Mainstreeters | Georgia Straight
Main Street ‘art gang’ remembered | The Westender
The Mainstreeters straddled Vancouver’s great divide, quietly | The Vancouver Sun
Exhibition Event Details:
Opening Reception: A free courtesy bus will take visitors from the opening reception of Mainstreeters: Taking Advantage, 1972-1982 at Satellite Gallery to the opening reception of Tom Burrows at the Belkin Art Gallery (UBC) on Thursday, January 8. The bus will depart Satellite Gallery for the Belkin at 8:30 pm and return downtown at 9:45 pm. | Visit Satellite Gallery’s website.
During the exhibition, Main Street Tapes will be show in storefronts along Main Street, including:
Eugene Choo, 3683 Main Street
Smoking Lily, 3634 Main Street
Lifetime Collective, 4386 Main Street
Performance of Kenneth Fletcher’s Camp Potlatch
Directed by Paul Wong
Thursday January 22 at 8pm
At Satellite Gallery.
Exhibition Tour and Conversation with Allison Collins and Michael Turner
Saturday, January 31 at 2pm
At Satellite Gallery.
Main Street Walking Tour with Paul Wong and Annastacia McDonald
Saturday, February 21 at 2pm
Meeting point: Helen’s Grill, 4102 Main Street
Saturday, March 7
Location: Fox Cabaret, 2321 Main Street