Black Gold

Exhibition Title: Black Gold

Artist: Tsēmā Igharas

Opening:

Exhibition Dates: January 22 - April 16, 2021

Tsēmā Igharas: Black Gold
Curated by Natasha Chaykowski

As more than 12,000 square kilometers of land—forests, grassy expanses, life—burned within the unceded territories now known as British Columbia, the east moving wind from the Pacific Ocean pushed the ensuing smoke across the Rockies, shrouding Alberta in darkness. As the smoke wafted eastward, millions of barrels of heavy crude were pumped westward: the movements of black gold.

Black Gold, a project by Tahltan artist Tsēmā Igharas, approaches mining practices and the indisputably thriving yet destructive extractive industries in the colonial states of British Columbia and Alberta, particularly within the context of Athabasca oil sands. This project takes for start the idea that mined substances are inherently connected to our bodies through a shared geological origin. The energy of a molecule is the energy of a person is the energy of a place is the energy of a moment.

In Summer 2018, Tsēmā investigated these tensions through site-specific research and a residency supported by Untitled Art Society, which allowed her to delve into how these issues are made manifest on Treaty 7 Territory and Treaty 8 Territory, in comparison to how mining industries exist culturally, historically, politically and economically in the unceded lands of the artist’s home territory, Tahltan First Nation in northwestern British Columbia.

 

Image: Tsēmā Igharas, Black Gold, Untitled Art Society, 2019. Image courtesy the artist and Untitled Art Society. Photo: Katy Whitt.

 

Cheap! Diligent! Faithful!

Exhibition Title: Cheap! Diligent! Faithful!

Artist: Marlene Yuen

Opening:

Exhibition Dates: September 25 — December 12th, 2020

Marlene Yuen: Cheap! Diligent! Faithful!

Vancouver-based printmaker Marlene Yuen’s explorations of Chinese Canadian labour histories have through the years taken the form of intricately produced print and paper-based media. Through ‘zines, comics, lovingly crafted artists books and – new for this exhibition – site-specific artworks, Yuen’s body of work comes off the pages and onto the walls. In precise and attentive craftsmanship, Yuen brings dimension to both the known and the overlooked histories of immigrant labour. Drawing from oral histories and archival research inspired by Yuen’s own family history, Cheap! Diligent! Faithful! acknowledges the complexities of labour and immigration in this country – and lifts up the small, remarkable details of lived experience.

The exhibition includes the launch of Yuen’s new publication that explores the graphic and cultural history of Ho Sun Hing Printers which closed in 2014, after 106 years of business in Vancouver’s Chinatown.

Artist Interview and Virtual Exhibition Tour here.

Yuen’s works available to view online:

Ho Sun Hing Printers, letterpress and risograph book, 2020.

Public Lunch, large comic panels, 2017.

Sam Chong Laundry, large comic panels, 2017.

Jean Lumb: Entrepreneur, Activist & Mother, large comic panels, 2017.

Cheng Foo, accordion book, 2017.

Mary Ko Bong, accordion book, 2017.

Artist Bio:
Marlene Yuen is a Vancouver-based artist who received her Bachelor’s of Studio Arts in 1998 from the University of British Columbia. Marlene has exhibited at galleries, artist-run centres, and cultural events in Canada, the United States, the United Kingdom, Belgium and Japan. Although she is a multidisciplinary artist, her current focus is on handmade books; her artist books have been retained in special collections nationally and internationally.

Currently, Marlene is focusing her subject matters on Chinese Canadian labour history and preservation of Vancouver’s historic Chinatown. Her newest artist book explores Vancouver Chinatown’s last print shop, Ho Sun Hing Printers.

Accessibility Information:
grunt gallery is accessed from the sidewalk via a 106” long, 64” wide concrete ramp that rises 12”. The slope is 1 : 8.75. There are no rails on the ramp. The front entrance is a manually operated outward-swinging double door with a total width of 64”. Entry to the Media Lab behind the gallery space is via a 42” wide passage and entry to the neighbouring amenity space is through a manually operated outward swinging double door with a total width of 70”. No stairs, inclines, or elevators are necessary to access the public areas once inside the gallery.

grunt gallery has a single gender neutral washroom that is accessed via a 31” wide doorway with a sliding pocket door with a door handle that is 40” high. The toilet has a 10” clearance on the left side and a 21” clearance in front, with a support bar on the left side. The sink height is 34”.

Click here for exhibition floor plan.

Photo: Dennis Ha, 2020.

Call for Submissions – Mount Pleasant Community Art Screen

Exhibition Title: Call for Submissions – Mount Pleasant Community Art Screen

Artist:

Opening:

Exhibition Dates: Deadline July 31st, 2020

MPCAS CALL for SUBMISSIONS

We accept submissions on an ongoing basis.
To be considered for the Fall/ Winter 2020 program, submissions must be received by July 31st, 2020 at 4pm.
Submissions received after this date will be considered at a later time.

Background:
The MPCAS is a 7×4 metre outdoor community and media arts LED screen, located on unceded Coast Salish territories at Kingsway and Broadway in Mount Pleasant. Broadcasting from 9am to 10pm most days, it is programmed by grunt gallery, an artist-run centre that has been in the neighbourhood since 1984. For more information please visit mpcas.ca

*please note the screen does not have audio capabilities, therefore all submitted content is currently limited to image and captioning only.

PLACE:
The current programming theme of the MPCAS is PLACE, which looks at a changing Mount Pleasant and Vancouver through works by artists, curators, and residents who live here or are connected to the area, exploring its past, current, and future vitality.

Mount Pleasant was one of Vancouver’s earliest neighborhoods, built along a large salmon and trout creek that ran from the swampy higher grounds down to the ocean — the same path as what is now Main Street. The area became a focus of colonial settlement in the mid-19th century and local Indigenous communities were forced out to make way for businesses that grew into a bustling destination neighbourhood. By 1910, business moved west with Shaughnessy becoming the preferred neighbourhood, and Mount Pleasant fell into economic decline for almost 100 years. With working-class roots, abundant rental housing, and transient tenants, it was the poorest neighbourhood outside of the Downtown Eastside. A community of immigrants, urban poor, and artists created the conditions from which much of Vancouver’s early modern cultural life grew.

Beginning in the 1990s, Mount Pleasant’s gentrification started to take hold, initially through the live/work studio condos that gradually began to appear in the area. In 2010, with the development in the Olympic Village area, aggressive upzoning began, and many residents were evicted from their long-held homes as rents doubled and tripled within a few years. Mount Pleasant’s gritty characteristics suddenly became its new selling points. Developer marketing highlighted its arts community and heritage buildings—although ironically both became early targets in the gentrification process. Mount Pleasant quickly transformed from one of Vancouver’s cheapest neighbourhoods to one of its most expensive, ground zero for the increasing unaffordability of the city.

The MPCAS engages with this complex and, at times, tense history of displacement, creativity, expansion and grit.

Participate:
Our vision is to provide an urban screen with content received from and responsive to its viewers, in contrast to the advertising/consumer paradigm that is the rule with most highly visible screens in a public space.

As we build a program that reflects, engages with and enriches the complex cultural history of Vancouver’s Mount Pleasant neighbourhood, our call for submissions welcomes contributions from artists, collectives, curators and other community members, organizations and community festivals. Topics could include (but are not limited to) identity, language, housing, city streets, food, neighbourhoods, landmarks, loss, memories, narratives of the past, and potential futures.

The racialized, immigrant and working class communities that have been the backbone of Mount Pleasant have also been disproportionately impacted by the economic swings and recent gentrification of the area. Without a doubt, the history of this unique neighbourhood is entwined with colonial legacies and systemic inequities, and we invite submissions that explore the idea of place from the angle of disPLACEment, too.

Generally speaking, submitted works should be ten minutes or less in length and could include (but are not limited to) still images, time-based media, animations, performance works, archival video, interactive pieces, GIFs, experimental video, event proposals, and curatorial/screening proposals.

How To Submit Your Work:
Please include the following information in your proposal :

  • Maximum one-page proposal describing your project, and how it relates to PLACE.
  • Supporting Documentation: Video submissions should be sent as a link to a host site (Youtube, Vimeo, etc). You may also send preview files via WeTransfer, Dropbox, or similar services if you prefer, please keep files to a maximum of 500MB.
  • Photography and image based submissions: 10-12 images. Image files should be no more than 1200 pixels wide.
  • Creator CV and a short biography.
  • Artist / Curator Statement (optional).

Please email proposals to submissions[at]grunt[dot]ca by July 31st at 4pm to be considered for Fall/Winter 2020 programming.

MPCAS Content and Technical Guidelines are available as a downloadable PDF

**Due to COVID-19, we will only be accepting digital submissions until further notice.

Become A Part of the MPCAS through our Digital Stories Workshops!
grunt gallery and EastVan Digital Stories join forces with Mount Pleasant and Vancouver residents who wish to create short videos around the theme of PLACE. Artists Lorna Boschman and Sebnem Ozpeta will host a series of free workshops that walk participants through the process of digital story making. Selected videos from the workshops will be shown on the MPCAS. For more information on EastVan Digital Stories please email lorna[at]digitalstories[dot]ca

Details on MPCAS programming and submissions can be found on our website mpcas.ca

Follow @gruntgallery and @MPCAS.Vancouver on Facebook for announcements and registration info for upcoming Fall and Winter workshops.

Image: Tomas Jirku, Unseen Urban Energy, still,  2019.

Mount Pleasant Community Art Screen

Exhibition Title: Mount Pleasant Community Art Screen

Artist: Various

Opening:

Exhibition Dates: Ongoing

grunt gallery remains closed until further notice due to the COVID-19 pandemic, but the Mount Pleasant Community Art Screen is still glowing bright at Kingsway and Broadway. Through partnerships, commissions, and open calls, there is an exciting and diverse range of new work on the screen exploring our current moment of isolation through moving and still images, texts, poems, drawings and more. Our new programming includes open link in new tab, a showcase of work by ten Indigenous women, Two Spirit, and Indigiqueer artists curated by Jessica Johns; Kevin House’s Isolation Boy project; and submissions from members of the Mount Pleasant community and local elementary school students to our ongoing open calls for creative engagement.

It’s our hope that the MPCAS can continue to connect our community and help us be together while apart in this era of social distancing and self-isolation. You can read more about the MPCAS programming here; and you can see the work in person on the screen on the side of The Independent building on Kingsway.

 

Photo: Bush Business, Jade Baxter.

SUPERNOVA

Exhibition Title: SUPERNOVA

Artist: Rah

Opening: April 30th, 2020

Exhibition Dates: May 1st — June 20th, 2020

The characters in Canadian-Iranian artist Rah’s SUPERNOVA foreground an exploration of gender, performance, selfhood and cultural identity in an upcoming exhibition at grunt gallery. Oreo, Fatimeh and the space-time-nonconforming Coco (all portrayed by the artist herself) exist variously in galaxy Messier 82, each a contestant on a futuristic, if eerily familiar, reality-tv-style talent show. Moving through performances for a panel of eccentric judges, Rah’s subjects provide commentary on gender and culture as it is performed in the mainstream – galactic or no – and the slippery potential of resistance.

pi’tawkewaq | our people up river

Exhibition Title: pi’tawkewaq | our people up river

Artist: Meagan Musseau

Opening: Thursday, March 5th, 2020, 7-9pm

Exhibition Dates: March 6th - April 11th, 2020

The gallery closed to the public due to the COVID-19 pandemic before this exhibition was finished. We were saddened not to be able to share this exhibition with you in person, however we created a virtual tour video of the exhibition, and the publication is available here: pi’tawkewaq_our people up river_Musseau_grunt gallery

For her first solo exhibition in Vancouver, Meagan Musseau presents a body of work from her ongoing research responding to Beothuk and Mi’kmaq visual culture. Musseau uses a multi-disciplinary practice that involves archival research, land-based action, video, drawing, and sculpture to explore land, language, and design. By telling stories about cultural belongings from the perspective of a contemporary L’nu woman living on Ktaqmkuk (Newfoundland), Musseau’s work transfers knowledge from archived collections into contemporary visual consciousness.

A braided sculpture made during a land-based action in Musseau’s home region of Elmastukwek (Bay of Islands, NL) forms the physical and conceptual center of the exhibition. While the act of endurance required to create the 22 foot braid connects to stories and nomadic histories of the Mi’kmaq, the object itself carries the history of the land in its creation. A series of tall sculptures rendered in engraved plexiglass reference Beothuk caribou bone pendants that Musseau visited during museum research. Evoking the artist’s experience of visiting cultural belongings through plexiglass cases, the sculptures re/awaken their designs by enlarging them to a human scale and presence. A site specific wall installation integrates the material qualities of the braid with graphic elements from the pendant designs. These textures surround an image of Musseau beside one of Santu Toney, a woman living in the early 1900s with mixed Mi’kmaw and Beothuk ancestry. Musseau’s work seeks to honour Santu by highlighting the transmission of knowledge that exists between past, present, and future generations.

pi’tawkewaq | our people up river presents contemporary cultural belongings that index and render tangible Musseau’s active practice of building and maintaining her relationships to land and ancestor artists. She uses her perspective to overturn colonial narratives of disappearance and instead addresses the role of interterritorial relationships between the two nations as a guiding methodology.

This exhibition received support from the Newfoundland and Labrador Arts Council. The artist would also like to acknowledge Grenfell Art Gallery and the Makerspace in Corner Brook, NL.

Meagan Musseau is an L’nu artist from the Mi’kmaq Nation. Her practice is rooted in Elmastukwek, Ktaqmkuk territory (Bay of Islands, Western Newfoundland) and extends to other areas of Mi’kma’ki and Wabanaki territory. Musseau nourishes an interdisciplinary practice by working with customary art forms and new media, such as basketry, beadwork, land-based performance, video and installation. She focuses on creating artwork, dancing, learning the Mi’kmaw language, and facilitating workshops as a way to actively participate in survivance. Her work has been exhibited at AKA artist-run centre, Saskatoon; Eastern Edge Gallery, St. John’s; VOX centre de l’image contemporaine, Montreal; Walter Phillips Gallery, Banff; and Kelowna Art Gallery, among others. She has been supported by numerous awards, and featured in publications such as Canadian Art, Border Crossings, and Visual Arts News. Meagan is working towards solo exhibitions at TRUCK Contemporary Art Gallery (Calgary 2020) and Ociciwan Contemporary Art Centre (Edmonton, 2020/21).

Laurie White is a curator and writer from Sheffield, England. She holds an MA in Critical and Curatorial Studies from the University of British Columbia. Her thesis exhibition project at Or Gallery, We Built a House Out of the Things We Had Gathered, explored salvage and bricolage as modes of ecological practice in contemporary art. She has curated exhibitions at the fifty fifty arts collective, Victoria; AHVA Gallery, UBC; and Western Gallery, Bellingham. She co-edited the catalogue Beau Dick: Devoured by Consumerism (Figure 1 Publishing) for Fazakas Gallery and her writing will appear in the forthcoming catalogue, Beginning with the Seventies published by the Morris and Helen Belkin Art Gallery. Laurie is currently the Assistant Curator at the Or Gallery.

BAIT

Exhibition Title: BAIT

Artist: Couzyn van Heuvelen

Opening: Thursday, January 9th, 2020, 7pm - 9pm

Exhibition Dates: January 10th - February 22nd, 2020

Couzyn van Heuvelen’s work is a reinterpretation and reimagining of Inuit hunting and fishing implements. The sculptural works draw upon the artist’s relationship to Inuit tradition and land-based material culture and technology. Through his artistic process, the artist manipulates material – aluminum, glass, steel –  to elaborate and distinguish the unique aesthetics and creative currency derived from utilitarian objects that define the maker. BAIT is a platform for the artist to further investigate his relationships and lived experience of his culture and identity through rendered artworks related to Inuit survival and sovereignty. The works in BAIT tease out the language of hunting, innovation and traditional practices through a framework of scale, materials and abstraction that is still uniquely Inuit. Through the presentation of van Heuvelen’s work, the exhibition addresses issues related to the transitional experiences between north and south, food sovereignty and the binaries of art, craft and function.

Couzyn van Heuvelen is an Inuk sculptor and installation artist originally from Iqaluit, NU, currently based in Bowmanville, Ontario. van Heuvelen received his BFA from York University in 2011 and his MFA in 2015 from NSCAD University. His artistic practice primarily consists of sculptural and installation works that draw from both art history and Inuit life. Across his varied pieces, he fuses traditional practices and forms with contemporary materials and fabrication processes.

Ryan Rice, Kanien’kehá:ka of Kahnawake, is an independent curator and the Associate Dean, Academic Affairs in the Faculty of Liberal Arts / School of Interdisciplinary Studies at the Ontario College of Art and Design (OCAD) University (Toronto, ON). His curatorial career spans 25 years in museums, artist run centres and galleries.

BAIT is curated by Ryan Rice. The exhibition is supported by the Ontario Arts Council and the Canada Council for the Arts.

There will be an artist talk at grunt gallery on January 11th, 2020, noon – 2pm.

 

Image: Couzyn van Heuvelen, Avataq, screen-printed mylar, ribbon, aluminum, helium, 2016.

a sentimental dissidence

Exhibition Title: a sentimental dissidence

Artist: Gabi Dao

Opening: October 31st, 2019, 7pm - 9pm

Exhibition Dates: November 1st - December 14th, 2019

“How do you remember the past the most?”

Equal parts family recollection, historical research and spectral diary, Coco Means Ghost forms the moving image focal point of Gabi Dao’s new installation.

Rooted in Dao’s research along the Mekong Delta and her own family’s history between cultures, a sentimental dissidence employs sculpture, video and sound to put imagined contemporary and historical diasporic voices in conversation. At the centre of the exhibition is a haunting: the eponymous narrator (a ghost in the form of a coconut) resists a singular place and time, moving freely, if not lightly, through personal photographs, contemporary commentary and archival material. Other characters appear– Lan, Ong Nam, Mr.Le, Quang, An, Nguyen and Dung–and together they tell the fragmented story of Ong Dao Dua ( ‘Mr.Coconut’), a monk who founded a small, self-sustaining, anti-war community in the late 1960s-70’s on Con Phung, an island colloquially known to westerners as the “Coconut Kingdom.” Through the lens of Ong Dao Dua’s oft-mythologized character, the work becomes an avenue to explore and enmesh broader notions of memory, nationhood, belief, belonging and dreams for the future.

Dao combines the single-channel video with sonically activated sculptures that transmit her family’s narrative in another form: excerpts from “Foreign Accent Improvement” cassettes used by the artist’s parents in the 1980s. a sentimental dissidence points to texture and poetics rather than conclusive fact, and creates a landscape that at once immerses, entangles and pushes back.

Gabi Dao is an artist and co-organizer at Duplex, a DIY project space + studio collective based the unceded territories of the Coast Salish peoples, including the xʷməθkwəy̓əm (Musqueam), Skwxwú7mesh (Squamish), and Səl̓ílwətaʔ/Selilwitulh (Tsleil-Waututh) Nations. She is interested in the insistence of counter-memory and fragmentation through the pursuit of sculpture, installation, sound, aural publishing, music and moving image.  She has recently shown her in various contexts such as the Images Festival, International Film Festival Rotterdam, Artspeak, Coop Radio, the internet, a rootftop parking lot, Western Front, The National Music Centre and Unit 17.

Curated by Vanessa Kwan.

1. coco means ghost: Screen & Video, 25m24s, followed by a short pause. HD video, 2.1 sound, LED lights, cans of coconut water, photograph, bench & pillows.
2. you and i, i and you: Sculptures & Audio, 6m30s, followed by a short pause. Beaded curtains, UV reducing window vinyl, transducers, tempered glass, aluminum.

Accessibility:
Hearing Access: Un-captioned English audio, some subtitled Vietnamese (written in English).
Sight Access: Low light conditions

Exhibition floor plan and accessibility info PDF.

Image: Gabi Dao, Coco Means Ghost, 2019

A study in restraint, nanlaban

Exhibition Title: A study in restraint, nanlaban

Artist: Anton Cu Unjieng

Opening: Thursday, September 5, 2019 7PM

Exhibition Dates: September 6 to October 19, 2019

grunt gallery presents A study in restraint, nanlaban, curated by Glenn Alteen.

Anton Cu Unjieng’s intricately taped, fired, and stacked ceramics are a response to recent political actions in his homeland in the Philippines. The Duterte regime’s mass killings have been officially classified as nanlaban, Filipino for ‘fought back.’ The stack arrangements in Cu Unjieng’s work are not only a monument to the regime’s precarious strength, but also to the possibility of fighting back.

Cu Unjieng’s concerns are also formal: “The decorative is a way of thinking about objects as relational, so that a decorative effect is a kind of ecology resulting from the total relations established between objects.” These totemic forms speak to “a metaphorical similarity between arrangement – a key aspect of any decorative logic – and the mechanics of power exercised by the Philippine state over the form of the social.”

Anton Cu Unjieng is a Filipino ceramist who trained with pioneering contemporary ceramists Tessy and Jon Pettyjohn at their workshop in Laguna, Philippines. Cu Unjieng is currently a PhD candidate in Art History at the University of British Columbia and is particularly interested in exploring the resonances between the language he uses to think about pottery and the way he understands the political realities currently developing in the Philippines.

Reading Room:
September 25th & October 2nd, 2019, 6-8PM
at grunt gallery

The Reading Room is an ongoing series of events hosted by grunt gallery and led by grunt board member, Gizem Sözen. Each Reading Room is an opportunity to discuss themes in the current exhibition through readings selected by the artist and/or curator. In this second iteration of grunt’s Reading Room we will read and discuss Alex S. Vitale’s “The Police Are Not Here to Protect You” (2018) and Alfred W. McCoy’s “Capillaries of Empire” (2009) in relation to Anton Cu Unjieng’s exhibition, “A study in restraint, nanlaban.”

To register for the Reading Room, please email nellie@grunt.ca by September 23rd. You will receive the readings upon registration.
*Light snacks and a cash bar at each event*

The texts:
1. Vitale, Alex S. “The Police Are Not Here to Protect You.” In The End of Policing, 31-54. London: Verso, 2018.
2. McCoy, Alfred W. “Capillaries of Empire.” In Policing America’s Empire: The United States, The Philippines, and the Rise of the Surveillance State, 15-56. Madison: University of Wisconsin Press, 2009.

nindinawemaganidog (all of my relations)

Exhibition Title: nindinawemaganidog (all of my relations)

Artist: Rebecca Belmore

Opening: Book Launch and Reception: July 28, 2019, 7 PM

Exhibition Dates: July 2 – August 3, 2019

grunt gallery presents an exhibition of new photographs by Rebecca Belmore: nindinawemaganidog (all of my relations), curated by Glenn Alteen, and the book launch of Wordless – The Performance Art of Rebecca Belmore.

Book Launch and Reception: July 28, 2019, 7 PM

Over the past two years, grunt gallery has been at work on the legacy publication Wordless – The Performance Art of Rebecca Belmore, focusing on her remarkable performance career.

Wordless features full-colour photos and stills, including the new photo series nindinawemaganidog (all of my relations) and essays by Richard William Hill, Curtis Collins, Kathleen Ritter, Wanda Nanibush, Jessica Jacobson-Konefall, Glenn Alteen, Jen Budney, Dan Pon and Florene Belmore. Edited by Florene Belmore.

Exhibition
July 2 – August 3, 2019

grunt gallery commissioned a series of five new photographs based on five of Belmore’s previous performances. The new series, nindinawemaganidog (all of my relations), includes, witness, matriarch, mother, madonna and keeper.

Presented by grunt gallery and the Audain Art Museum. Published by Information Office. Wordless was funded through Canada Council for the Arts 150 Program, New Chapter and the Audain Art Museum. Wordless is one of the 200 exceptional projects funded through the Canada Council for the Art’s New Chapter initiative.

    

 

Image credit: Rebecca Belmore

Skip to toolbar