Annual General Meeting 2022

NOTICE OF ANNUAL GENERAL MEETING

Visible Art Society (dba grunt gallery)

 

DATE: Thursday September 29, 2022
TIME: 6:30pm
LOCATION: Online
Join Zoom Meeting: https://us06web.zoom.us/j/86067695351

Meeting ID: 860 6769 5351

ADDRESS: #116 – 350 East 2nd Avenue, Vancouver, BC, V5T 4R8, Mainspace Building

Please join us for a fast and fun Annual General Meeting of the Visible Art Society (dba grunt gallery) by Zoom.  We will be meeting for the following purposes:

  1. Presentation of the 2021 – 2022 audited financial statements
  2. Board of Directors’ report
  3. Program Director and Operations Director reports
  4. Election of the society’s officers

As a member, you are invited to attend virtually and vote.  If you are not a member, please go to grunt.ca and sign up for our newsletter by 5:00pm on September 28, 2022. There is no cost to membership.

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Cree & D

After many trials and several travels in the great iron birds that skim across the skies and over the canopy towns in the realm of Ministik—wait, wherefore and what-now is Ministik? We’re thrilled to invite you into a new project written by Jessica and Ben Johns. Cree & D has been percolating in the background like the healing tonic of a strong, home-brewed yarrow kombucha. Written in the style of a Dungeons & Dragons campaign, this is a story of love, family, and of course adventure, as these aunties work to preserve the hard won and tenuous peace treaty between the six nations. There’s also Butterball, Auntie Darlene’s werepug familiar.

The first episode of Cree & D launches Friday August 19th, 2022! This campaign follows the story of three cuzzins—Auntie Vera, Auntie Darlene and Auntie Mac—as they search for Kokum Cardinal’s stolen staff and work to preserve the peace in the realm of Ministik. Listen on the player below or follow our channel on PodBean: click here!

Cree & D is produced by These Ones (formerly known as Together Apart) and supported by grunt gallery on the unceded territories of the Musqueam, Squamish and Tsleil-Waututh peoples. We record on Treaty 6 at FAVA studios. Art by Abbey Riddle. Music by Matthew Cardinal. Voices by Ben and Jessica with Emily Riddle and Matt Ward.

Image by Abbey Riddle.

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Ho Tak Kee: New Commissioned Work & Artist Talk

One part fairy tale, one part cooking show and one part Cantonese school, Ho Tak Kee by Leung Yiksea 梁亦詩 and Karin Lee 李嘉慈 is an assembly of fragmented memories and imagined conversations of a local wonton house that was lost to fire one Christmas day. The Mount Pleasant Community Art Screen is located on the site of the former Ho Tak Kee Wonton House, and many elements of this project were inspired by conversations with the Ho Tak Kee family and artists in the area who frequented the eatery. This settler story is emblematic of many newcomer/family-run eateries. Click here for details about this new work on the MPCAS.

On Saturday May 28th, join us online for an artist talk with Leung Yiksea 梁亦詩 and Karin Lee 李嘉慈 in conversation with Vanessa Kwan regarding Ho Tak Kee, commissioned by grunt gallery for the Mount Pleasant Community Art Screen. For this presentation we will be screening the work online before the discussion, but if you have the opportunity, please go see the work on the screen at Kingsway and Broadway, as intended! Ho Tak Kee screens throughout the week—click here and scroll down for the MPCAS programming schedule—and will be screening for the full day on Saturdays and Sundays in May and every Sunday in June.

This event will be presented on Zoom, with auto-captioning and a live transcript by otter.ai.

Click here to join the event.

[Image description: a family-sized bowl of wor wontons topped with vibrant green bok choy is centred on a glass lazy susan, on a red-and-white gingham tablecloth. To the left of the bowl is a tray of condiments: soy sauce, chili oil and an diner-style ketchup bottle. To the right are four empty rice bowls and a ladle.]
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Low-Sensory & Voice-off Gallery Hours

We are offering and experimenting with low-sensory and voice-off exhibition visiting hours throughout 2022.

On Thursdays from Noon-5PM, our Exhibitions Manager, Kay Slater, will offer a low-sensory and/or voice-off experience to visitors wishing to visit the space and our exhibitions.

What this will mean:

  • We will ask visitors to come scent-free on Thursdays (no perfume or scented body products—paint your nails a few days before visiting!)
  • You can choose to be voice-off and not converse with our gallery staff. You will not be approached unless you approach us (or if you are in need of assistance). Kay is hard of hearing and will require mask-wearing (mandatory) visitors to communicate by writing, ASL, English sign, or to step outside and remove masks so they can lip read (English or French).
  • Any sound or media pieces will be sound-off or low-volume for visitors. Transcripts and captions will be available for all works.
  • Overhead, exhibition lights will be dimmed, still providing safe passage through the space.

If you have any suggestions, additional requests for a low-sensory day, or would like us to anticipate your visit with additional consideration, please email us at access@grunt.ca — we welcome your feedback!

 

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Call for Submissions: Mount Pleasant Community Art Screen

We are currently accepting submissions for the Mount Pleasant Community Art Screen, until February 7th, 2022! We welcome contributions from artists, collectives, curators and other community members, organizations and community festivals. Generally speaking, submitted works should be 10 minutes or less and could include (but are not limited to) still images, time-based media, animations, performance works, archival video, interactive pieces, GIFs, experimental video, and curatorial/screening proposals.

The curatorial vision for the Mount Pleasant Community Art Screen is centralized on the broader theme of PLACE. Initially, this focused on the literal geographical perimeters on the stolen, unceded territories of the Musqueam, Squamish and Tsleil-Waututh nations, as a part of one of so-called Vancouver’s earliest neighbourhoods. This theme has also evolved to encompass a continuing community and network of makers holding deep knowledge of the area’s histories, holding visions of the future, and holding ground as the landscape rapidly shifts in the Mount Pleasant neighbourhood. Topics have included identity, language, housing, city streets, food, neighbourhoods, landmarks, loss, memories, narratives of the past, and potential futures.

The MPCAS will continue to honour it’s initial framing of PLACE; as a community screen we are beholden to how we are on the land and how we wish to reflect the communities we envision this screen to be for. We also invite and encourage submissions which speak towards the ambiguity of place–of displacement, diaspora, digital and contested space, as well as artists whose work has been inextricably shaped by their time in the communities of this PLACE.

Click here for details and submission forms!

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Interview with Ben Bogart

Ben Bogart’s new work, A diffraction of past/stability and present/dynamism, will be featured on the Mount Pleasant Community Art Screen from December 17th—26th, 2021. This beautifully complex work will screen for 7.5 hours/day, you can read more about the project here. We will also be presenting Ben’s work in our gallery, with an artist talk in January, 2022. We’re excited to share this work with you, and wanted to introduce you to Ben’s practice — read on for a mini interview with Ben Bogart!

Please tell us a bit about yourself and your creative practice!

I’m a non-binary agender adisciplinary conceptual artist and as I write this I’m constantly distracted by hummingbirds coming to visit my new feeder and delighted watching their tongues as they flick them out of their beaks after each sip of nectar. For over two decades I’ve focused on computational processes as artistic material; I think of the use of computational processes as following from the instruction works of 1960s conceptual art onward. In my artistic practice I’ve engaged with methods including physical modelling, chaotic equations, feedback systems, evolutionary algorithms, computer vision, and machine learning. I’ve diffracted these methods through bodies of knowledge in computational creativity, cognitive neuroscience, psychology of creativity, and quantum physics, and see continuity between my artistic and scholarly practices. Through these disparate methods and disciplines, my work engages with fundamental questions regarding subjectivity, objectivity, knowledge, meaning, emergence, complexity, autonomy, creativity, and thought. In recent years I’ve been thinking through Karen Barad’s Agential Realism and the ways in which boundary-making is fundamental to natural-cultural (physical-conceptual) processes. I’ve come to realize that my professional practice has always troubled and reworked physical and conceptual boundaries.

How did you become engaged with the technology used in your piece for the MPCAS?

My dad worked with computers his entire professional life, from a thesis written using punch cards, through magnetic reel-to-reel tape, to hard disks. He is also a photographer and for nearly as long as I can remember photography and digital imaging were available to me, but I’m not sure I thought of myself as an artist then. It wasn’t until moving to Toronto in 1999 that I was exposed to the “Electronic Media Art” scene that gave me a precedent for thinking about computation and technology as artistic materials. One of the first people I met outside of university was Camille Turner at the Subtle Technologies Conference in 1999 and it was her who introduced me to Jim Ruxton and InterAccess. I owe so much to artists such as David Rokeby and Norman White for expanding my boundaries of artistic practice and imagining a role for technology in it.

In 2001, I made a work using an evolutionary algorithm inspired by Karl Sims—who made a lot of formative computational art in the 1990s. My ongoing use of the Self-Organizing Map—a simple artificial neural network that rearranges pixels according to colour used in the MPCAS piece—started in 2006. My inspiration for using machine learning in art was George Legrady’s Pockets Full of Memories from 2001 which also uses the Self-Organizing Map. It’s hard to demarcate where machine learning differs from other computational methods such as feedback loops, chaos mathematics, or physical models. In all of my engagements with technology I’m looking to develop processes that have the capacity to surprise me. This surprise could be due to my misunderstanding—or the complexity—of the process. I see machine learning as just another engagement with complexity resulting from a process built up from the interactions of many simple components. From this high-level perspective, there is no difference between a physical model made up of many small mass-spring-damper components and artificial neural networks. I provide this short ~20 year personal history because while the tech industry is very good at emphasizing novelty, it is imperative for artists using tech to see their relation with—and situate their work in—the ~70 year history of artists working with electronic and computational technologies.

What interests you about the Mount Pleasant Community Art Screen?

Having lived in East Van for a decade now I’ve spent a lot of time on the 10th and Ontario bike routes. Walking and cycling to go shopping at the old MEC store, or just to spend time on Main Street, I’ve seen a lot of changes in Mount Pleasant. I can hardly remember what used to be where The Independent now stands. How long will Kingsgate Mall stay around? What changes will we see in the next 10 years? My interest in public art is situated in a preoccupation with the ways an artwork can relate to its site—not only conceptually but also in terms of structure. My approach to public art involves using technologies that allow the structure of artworks to be created in dialogue with place. I see this as a natural extension of my interest in surprise and emergence where the site itself becomes a collaborator and the form of a work emerges from interactions between algorithms, the site, and my intention. Our city is changing so much and so quickly; there is so much potential for public art that literally (re)structures itself through these changes and reflects the city back to itself through an ongoing and evolving relationship. I hope there will be opportunities for even more ambitious multi-year permanent projects where artworks evolve ‘live’ as the city changes around them. Vancouver seems like an ideal place for this kind of work as we embark on large density projects to make staying here more viable.

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grunt gallery Accessibility Committee

The above video is an ASL translation of the text below.

Over time, grunt gallery has explored and supported a wide range of practices including exhibitions, performances, online projects, public art, residencies, media- and time-based works, talks and symposia, publications and community-engaged practices. Our wide range of programming has always included the creation and dissemination of audio/ visual materials and online experiences. With a mandate to support artists and inspire public dialogues, we are committed to doing the work to create an environment that allows for accessible conversation. This aim informs how we develop and build our archive, engage with audiences and look to the future of our organization.

In Spring 2020, we created an Accessibility Committee composed of grunt staff and contractors and chaired by our Exhibitions Manager (and Accessibility consultant) Kay Slater. This committee gathers to audit and review systems, procedures, and policies of grunt gallery to identify, think through, improve, and share the way we show up in our public programming, exhibitions, and for our community. Over the past year, we have drafted guidelines for hosting online and hybrid events, video captioning and transcription, and have begun re-drafting contracts. In Spring 2021, we launched a series of captioning, transcription and non-auditory access workshops offered to our communities for free. This ongoing series includes a mentorship opportunity to learn captioning alongside experienced and practicing access professionals with an invitation for mentees to co-facilitate their own non-auditory access workshops designed specifically for their own communities.

We are informed by anti-oppression practices, a commitment to learning and sharing our findings, and a belief in social justice through the arts. We understand these processes take time, resources and long-term commitment.

If you have questions regarding this work, or suggestions for how we can do it better, please contact us at access@grunt.ca

 

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Fire Flower Artist Talk: Phone Access

To access the Project Fire Flower Artist Talk via phone:

One tap mobile
+14388097799,,82174264205#,,,,*041337# Canada
+15873281099,,82174264205#,,,,*041337# Canada
Dial by your location
+1 438 809 7799 Canada
+1 587 328 1099 Canada
+1 647 374 4685 Canada
+1 647 558 0588 Canada
+1 778 907 2071 Canada
+1 204 272 7920 Canada
Meeting ID: 821 7426 4205
Passcode: 041337
Find your local number: https://us06web.zoom.us/u/kdGd8qavzI
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Tidal Volume Artists Interviews

We asked the Tidal Volume participating artists some questions to get to know them and their work, read on to learn from  Orene Askew (Sḵwx̱wú7mesh) and Salia Joseph (Sḵwx̱wú7mesh, Snuneymuxw) about the project they are creating during this digital artist residency.

Tell us about your creative practice. What projects have you been working on recently?

OA: My creative practice is all over the map, but it has always come back to music. I’m a DJ, Teacher, Activist, Motivational Speaker, and Media/Hip Hop Artist. My piece “O Show Flow,” is being shown at The Yoko Ono Exhibit at The Vancouver Art Gallery until May 2022. I finished filming “The O Show” Documentary by Human Biography earlier this year and now the film is winning awards at flim festivals around the world. I also finished recording my first Hip-Hop Track “Status & Clarity” (Which is featured at The Yoko Ono Exhibit) and filmed the music video for the track that will be out early next year.

SJ: My creative practice is hard to define as it an underlying aspect of how I move through my passions and roles within my community. I see my Squamish commitments as how I give back and what I have to offer. Part of that is through song, through learning and carrying teachings forward. I see cultural, community and creative practice as deeply connected and non-linear.

Can you tell us a bit about what ideas, forms or mediums you’re hoping to work with during this residency?

OA: Working with Salia, we had ideas flowing already in our first Zoom meeting. Our ideas were so similar and as we were talking the announcement of the children found in Tk’emlúps (Kamloops) was around that time. We both have family who had attended residential school and thought we should try to do something with sounds and media that will give back to our community, especially the survivors and the children who didn’t make it home. I don’t want to give too much away, but using sounds in our territory is going to be big part of our project.

SJ: For this residency we are looking to create a series of offerings for our community to help heal the wounds that are ever present, and currently being re-open and exposed with the findings at residential schools. While our own community undertakes their own research at former St. Paul’s residential school we wanted to create healing pieces that could be thought of as lullabies for our past, present and future ones. We are hoping to use pieces of old interview recordings, use of Squamish songs and language as well as sounds from our territory.

What excites you most about this residency? What do you foresee as the biggest challenge?

OA: What excites me about this residency is working with Salia Joseph. She is fluent in our Sḵwx̱wú7mesh Snichim (Squamish Language), has so much to offer, and I know I’m going to learn so much from her. She also has an amazing singing voice . The biggest challenge I foresee will be timing and recording equipment. I’m glad that we have support from a great Producer, Jane Aurora, and I can’t wait to get into her studio and start recording.

SJ: I’m most excited to be able to work with Orene and get to know her better as kin and as an artist. It’s been cathartic and healing for us to plan this work and I’m excited to having something to offer our community that aims to make people feel held and cared for. I’m also really exited to push myself out of my comfort zone and take on a new type of project such as this and continue to grow my creative capacities.

***

Orene Askew (she/ her), aka DJ O Show, brings energy and expertise to every event she hosts and DJs. She brings professionalism and passion and remains true to her love for hip hop and R&B, incorporating beats to ensure you never want to leave the dance floor! Coming from a diverse background, O Show is driven by her passion. She is Afro-Indigenous, two spirited, and a proud member of the Squamish Nation. Feeling as though she stood out in a unique way, she has embraced both her cultural backgrounds and incorporates the teachings she has learned into everything she does. DJ O Show has experience teaching with an inspired approach. She is an inspirational speaker, having traveled across the country to bring ambition and drive to all generations, and an elected member of Squamish Nation Council.

O Show has DJ’d the red carpet for Vancouver Indigenous Fashion Week and was voted the official DJ for YES in Ottawa since 2012 and the official DJ for Gathering Our Voices for five years. She has hosted/MC’d/Played at numerous events, including Bowling for Big Brother’s Classic, Babes on Babes, Hershe and working for radio stations like Vancouver’s Virgin 94.5 and Washington’s Movin’ 92.5. She is the recipient of a 2015 BC Indigenous Business Award, 2018 Stand Out Award from the Vancouver Pride Society, and a 2021 Alumni of Excellence Award from Capilano University.

Salia Joseph, St’ax̱í7alut (she/her) is Sḵwx̱wú7mesh, Snuneymuxw, British and Jewish. She is a graduate of the First Nations and Indigenous studies program at UBC and cares deeply about decolonial, and intersectional approaches to learning and caring for one another. Salia is the executive director of Kwi Awt Stelmexw, a Sḵwx̱wú7mesh non profit focused on language revitalization. She is also part owner of a business called Host Consulting inc. which is a Musqueam, Squamish, Tsleil-Waututh consultancy focused on public art and decolonial dialogues.

Maya Hodge is a proud Lardil & Yangkaal woman raised in Mildura, Victoria. Based on the lands of the Kulin Nation (Melbourne), Maya is an emerging artist, published poet, curator and violinist whose work explores the power of healing in the arts, through uplighting First Nations creativity and Aboriginal women’s autonomy.

Maya is a president artist in this mob collective’s art studio, based at Collingwood Yards, and a founding member of Ensemble Duatala, an all Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander classical ensemble. Maya has been involved in various projects and exhibitions including dis rupt, YIRRAMBOI Festival (2019); Constant Ecology, Westspace, KINGS Artist-Run (2020); Black Wattle with this mob, ArtsHouse Refuge Program (2021). Maya is currently the Assistant Curator – Exhibitions & Programs at Blak Dot Gallery.

Jarra Karalinar Steel is a multidisciplinary artist known for her Melbourne Art Tram, powerful poster art, large-scale public installations, augmented reality, digital art, emu egg engravings, and commemorative signage. Steel explores her identity, memories, pop culture, folklore from her cultural history, and lived experiences growing up in Melbourne and living on country in culture with knowledge passed down through her family.

Steel is of Boon Wurrung, Wemba Wemba, Trawlwoolway, English and Scottish descent, and is based in Melbourne’s south on Boonwurrung country. She is a passionate advocate and consultant for self-representation of Victorian First Peoples art and culture and making sure it is kept alive and thriving. Her focus in public and community art looks at ways to insert contemporary cultural visual language into the urban and digital landscape by reclaiming space and belonging through digital storytelling.

Images: Orene Askew, photo by Belle Ancell; Salia Joseph, photo by Kaili’l Smith.

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