[grunt had]… an embryonic beginning that was a toss-up. It could have ended several times, but the people who believed in it stuck around. There was always a coffee pot going (and a kettle for tea) to converse over, whether supportive or argumentative. The people were a diverse lot with a multitude of practices. There were musicians (jazz to folk to Cage), writers (Haikus to great epics), visual artists (from drawing and painting etc., to performance art, video and theatre); it wasn’t New York or Paris but just grunt. In its own way, for the community, more important. A safe place that accepted and cross- pollinated a great diversity of creative thought and people.
– Merle Addison, grunt founding member
The show that you’re standing in is part of a larger conversation. At the time of writing I can see a white fridge, a non- working stove, a set of second-hand Ikea cabinets, a pile of 2x4s, an old coffee maker, an arborite table, a chop saw. It is as yet unresolved—and will continue to evolve throughout the run of the exhibition, building in dimension and playing host to events, discussions and small gatherings.
The artist – Julia Feyrer – has been working in the archive for months now, pulling images and ideas out of binders and cupboards, watching videos and running slides. Central to her research has been images of the grunt kitchen, often mined from the background of documentation of openings, fundraisers and board meetings of years past. Faces, overexposed from a 90s-era flashbulb, laughing/ smiling/ smoking/ drinking in the grunt kitchen. Like so many archival investigations, this one is about filling in blanks—pulling information from the literal backgrounds of the collection.
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