2003 ••• Archive

  Special Event  
Sadie Benning, Jason Mombert, Alexandre Perigot, Sandy Plotnikoff, Smith & Stewart and Yoko Takashima
Put On: A screening and exhibition of video works
High Performance Rodeo
January, 2003

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Exhibition Information




Exhibition Information

Curated by: Lissa Robinson & Mark Clintberg
Presented by: Stride Gallery and the Art Gallery of Calgary (AGC)

Put On is a video screening & exhibition that speaks of theatricality. The featured videos mimic qualities and methods of theatre, and laud traditions of performance. Each work proposes players. They transcribe modes of portraiture - even disingenuous portraiture - the stuff of characterization where screen is practice mirror, vanity prop and device for staging and gazing. Using the body as both site and signifier, all six artists employ idioms of popular culture and the everyday familiar to explore, conflate and contort issues of self or social identity, sexuality, death and interdependency.
This co-production of Stride Gallery and the Art Gallery of Calgary features several video works in conjunction with One Yellow Rabbit's High Performance Rodeo and is presented in the AGC's Education Centre, Stride Gallery’s Project Room, in the main lobby of the Epcor Centre for the Performing Arts, and at the Alberta College of Art and Design.

Smith and Stewart

Project Room, The Stride Gallery, 1004 MacLeod Trail SE
January 3 - 26, 11am to 5pm, Tuesday thru Saturday

Mouth to Mouth [1995] is a single projection installation that depicts a fully dressed Stewart lying in a bathtub, underwater, while Smith intermittently aids in her partner's breath by breathing into his lungs. This work provocatively depicts an intimate working device or system that reinforces the roles humans play in their relationships, sexual, political, or otherwise.

Partners and collaborators since 1993, Glasgow-based Smith & Stewart's work explore themes of love, sex and death. Their psychologically charged videos are staged, and episodic metaphors that explore ways of relating through the senses. "This is a theatre of love, or a kind of operating theatre, in which the mechanics by which a sexual union survives are laid out, dissected, and ultimately permitted to triumph." (Gilda Williams, I Love You to Death, p. 44, No. 59, art/text, 1997-98)

Sadie Benning

Lecture Hall, Alberta College of Art & Design, 1407 14 Avenue NW
January 16 @ 6:30 pm

Benning’s two films, The Judy Spots [1995] and Flat is Beautiful [1998] are a hybrid of drawing, mask-making and video through a distinctly diartistic format that features an array of cultural (toys, advertising, cartoons) and self-constructed (masks or puppets) objects.

In The Judy Spots we encounter an abrasive and crudely constructed papier-mache teenager named Judy who, through a series of five vignettes, almost violently explores her life as an angst-ridden adolescent living in the grips of her North American culture. In Flat is Beautiful, Benning traces the life of latchkey kid Taylor (Sammy Steel), a 12-year-old girl living with her mother and a gay roommate. In an unusual twist, Benning adorns her actors in crudely drawn masks that intensify rather than mute the emotional impact of her characters as they all struggle to break through their rigidly constructed identities.
Sadie Benning is an American videomaker and musician who began creating her films when she was 15 years old using a Fisher-Price Pixelvision toy camera.

Jason Mombert

Education Centre, The Art Gallery of Calgary, 117 8th Avenue SW
January 16, 17, 18, 23, 24 & 25 @ 6:30 pm

Gas Face [2002] re-enacts editing technique from early rap videos with its subject contorting and stuttering, his motions being both self-conscious and assured. This work is a pie chart of the 'hip hop economy'. Baseball caps, shirts, bandana’s, magazines, and records in varying quantities form a part of a financial structure, as in 'punk economy', 'queer economy', 'corporate economy'. Mombert’s reconstruction of ebonic gesture commentates on race politic as much as it does on plain mirror gazing and vanity: with Mombert as a Caucasian producer. Like Adrock et al, Mombert’s mimesis of a specific cultural coding - in his contemplation and posturing - reveals a literacy and certitude in a particular language.

Jason Mombert completed his graduate degree at the Nova Scotia College of Art & Design and has since shown internationally. He currently lives in New York City.

Alexandre Perigot

Education Centre, The Art Gallery of Calgary, 117 8th Avenue SW
January 16, 17, 18, 23, 24 & 25 @ 6:30 pm

A tutorial on how to die, Kill Kill Choreographie [1996] gives instructions on falling. Within it, voiceless specters [read: plainclothes ‘young adults’] imitate death by stabbing, poisoning, and shooting, both alone and in groups. The subjects dramatize and re-enact the imagined deaths of others [recalling perhaps: ‘that time I saw Alec Guinness die’, over the top reality television shows] and their own potential deaths with verve and enthusiasm, disinterest and apathy. With studious intent, these subjects prepare for death, the knowing of it and are then [presumably] resurrected off-camera.

Alexandre Perigot works in France and is represented by Gallerie Maissoneuve in Paris.

Sandy Plotnikoff

Education Centre, The Art Gallery of Calgary, 117 8th Avenue SW
January 16, 17, 18, 23, 24 & 25 @ 6:30 pm

Sock Jams documents performances wherein Plotnikoff dons socks, many socks, until his feet become solid, distended masses of fabric. Aesthetic selections are made. Adidas socks, socks with pom-poms and argyles are classified, displayed and put on. These objects are both costumes and log-like prostheses, transmuting Plotnikoff and speaking to codes of dress, ‘get-up’, and abject boredom.

Sandy Plotnikoff resides in Toronto. His practice j-walks between wearable objects, interventions and constructions.

Yoko Takashima

Main Lobby Stairwell, Epcor Centre for the Performing Arts
Evening of January 9, 10 & 11

As If [1996] is an explicitly sensual video tableaux that confronts the viewer with an image of a woman licking a white gooey substance off the lens of a camera. Despite its playful gesture, the tongue moving provocatively across the creamed surface offers us a disquieting, and voyeuristic indulgence. Once the glass is wiped clean, the loop is reversed and the mouth appears to regurgitate its creamy oral delight.
Born in Japan, in 1961, Yoko Takashima currently lives and works in Victoria, B.C. She holds a B.F.A. from the University of Lethbridge and a M.F.A. from the University of Victoria.

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