Written by David McLeish, posted on Vancouver Art Review.
Finding the right way to discuss the show currently on at Satellite Gallery, “Mainstreeters: Taking Advantage 1972-1982” has been difficult. I’ve opted to split my review into two parts, the first part dealing with individual works, the second part offering broader reflections. It seemed reasonable to devote two reviews to this show, as it is clearly a major, multi-party undertaking whose contents require and deserve sustained engagement. Still, this review is much longer than I intended.
First, some background. The Mainstreeters (Kenneth Fletcher, Deborah Fong, Carol Hackett, Marlene MacGregor, Annastacia McDonald, Charles Rea, Jeanette Reinhardt and Paul Wong) were a self-described “art gang” who grew up around Main Street in Vancouver’s Mount Pleasant neighbourhood. They became friends in high school and, during the decade covered by the exhibit, they were active participants in Vancouver’s art scene. They worked mainly in video and performance. They also led art workshops, hosted “drag balls,” and dabbled in fashion modeling. Paul Wong and Charles Rea went on to have solo careers as artists, while other members pursued other paths.
[Read the entire review here]