Exhibited at the Centre Pompidou in Paris and at the Street Meet Festival in Saskatoon, Decisions, Decisions is a temporary and interactive text-based installation. The statements for Decisions, Decisions are based on exaggerations and distortions of familiar rhetoric from community consultations, urban development, campaign slogans, and protest placards. The text is ambiguous or unsettled, designed to encourage a plurality of understandings, highlighting the diversity of our own interests and affinities in a public space. However, each statement is also more complex than it might appear at first glance, aiming to offer a sense of instability or shifting priorities for the viewer. Drawing on this kind of language, the poster series also interjects other logics and potentials by encouraging participation based on either agreement, disagreement, or ambivalence, using small sticker dots normally found in asset mapping activities and based on added complications based on footnoted questions in a corresponding booklet. Decisions, Decisions aims to capture a sense of possibility and power in the language we use to describe ongoing, and yet subtle, political struggle.
Glossed Over appears as a large-scale sampled text in white gloss finish vinyl that explores critical understandings and framings of the roles of power, participation, and ethics in relation to art and its institutional contingencies. Sentences drawn from a series of writers including Judith Butler, Jacques Ranciere, Chantal Mouffe, and Sol Lewitt, among others, are stitched together to create a winding statement on the embedded challenges in which contemporary gallery spaces (and the art contained within them) are necessarily implicated, while the emphases added to the texts creates a secondary entry point into the work. The text could be read as a caption, response, critique, or commentary on the context and potentially hidden frameworks of support, antagonism, or compromise within which the gallery space exists. The books from which these texts are drawn will be catalogued and available for reference at MOCCA.
This work appeared in the exhibition, TBD, curated by Su-Ying Lee.
10 Things You Will Always Need to Know About This City (hereafter 10 Things) invited members of the community to contribute to a series of time capsules that will be embedded throughout the city of Lethbridge for periods of time ranging from next year to 1000 years from now. The time capsules asked for intimate and essential understandings about the city through the inclusion of urgent and important items from today alongside more reflective or speculative items that can describe people or places that have already been lost, or inventions, architectures or dreams that should exist.
The project aimed to create an opportunity to consider time through the lenses of legacy and burden as practices of everyday life, forms of resistance, and forward-looking records for the city of Lethbridge. Contributions of small artefacts, stories, and documents formed the basis of the official entries to the series of 10 time capsules.
Each time capsule will be themed around a prompt or question about Lethbridge, and each entry will, in turn, aim to provide a response. Accompanying these object-based responses will be a small publication featuring written responses from interviews with the project participants, copies of which will be made available online and in print to help document the project. The time capsules themselves will be laser-engraved stainless steel containers of various sizes and will be buried, embedded, and otherwise stored in various locations throughout the city. Upon completion, a plaque will be created with the GPS coordinates and opening dates of the time capsules, hosted in perpetuity at the Southern Alberta Art Gallery.
Commissioned by the Southern Alberta Art Gallery in 2014.
As part of Manif D’art 7 – Resistance: And Then, We Built New Forms / Résistance – Et puis, nous avons construit de nouvelles formes, curated by Vicky Chainey Gagnon, I created The Academy of Tactical Resistance, an installation and project space featuring a series of booklets, photographs, workshops, ephemera, videos, exercises, and demonstrations aimed at exploring and distributing the tactical capacity for small-scale resistance.
Through the heightening of everyday concerns to disruptive emergencies, ATR offers a toolkit aimed at carving out new forms of agency in our daily lives, working to enable everyday citizens to remount their own resistive practices in the places they live.
Crucially, ATR imagines itself as a pop-up education zone for the radicalization of everyday practices and adjustments. It forgoes the assumption that dramatic revolutionary change is imminent, and instead relies upon de Certeau’s analysis of everyday tactics and Hardt’s and Negri’s discussion of affective labour to develop an academy that can support the resistance of the small, the porous, the invisible, and the routine.
ATR finds the emergency embedded in the banal and aims to mobilize the affects of the ordinary. It blends glimpses of violence, utopian practices, critical theory, and DIY aesthetics to offer viewers an opportunity to not only explore tactics of resistance, but also the prompts to construct their own responses to the everyday emergencies they encounter.
This project is generously supported by the Canada Council for the Arts.
Running Time: 1:52:00 / Excerpt Above: 2:30 (click to watch)
This video features raw footage from the Associated Press (AP) online archive of resistance activities from around the world. These short clips are collected from the top five results returned by searching the AP online archive in March 2014 for the following keywords: protesters, riots, resistance movements, activists, strike, freedom fighters, tactical, rebels, guerrilla, uprising.
This footage is often used as b-roll in news broadcasts to help contextualize the story, but when collected from the archive, it exists as an unedited stream of supporting images detached from summarizing narratives.
This work has been shown at Manif D’Art (2014) and the Centre Pompidou (2016) as part of the Academy of Tactical Resistance.
all we are is all we were (2013), hand-shaped LED neon light
A new public art work located on the Sandwich Windmill at Mill Park in Windsor, Ontario, commissioned by the City of Windsor and Windsor Community Foundation 1812 Legacy Project.
This work was also made possible with the assistance of Danielle Sabelli and Hiba Abdallah. Special thanks to Cathy Masterson, Heidi Baillargeon, and Tucker Electric.
Broken City Lab is an artist-led interdisciplinary collective and non-profit organization working to explore and unfold curiosities around locality, infrastructures, education, and creative social practice leading towards civic change.
Our projects, events, workshops, installations, and interventions offer an injection of disruptive creativity into a situation, surface, place, or community. These projects aim to connect various disciplines through research and social practice, generating works and interventionist tactics that adjust, critique, annotate, and re-imagine the cities that we encounter.
Since 2008, we have worked as an ad-hoc collective.
Helvetica Bold stencil, black acrylic paint, cold-pressed paper, red masking tape
A series of 25 hand-painted posters created to provide a starting place for complicating the ideas and concerns informing an art practice based on locality, infrastructures, and social practice. Underlines in red masking tape allow for a shift in emphasis should the occasion arise.
Overhead Projector, Single Sheet of Acetate
A list of outlining the feasibility of fifty activities that could occur between Windsor and Detroit residents to re-imagine cross-border relationships.
Custom Software / Live Generative Video
Live generative video for “Aurora”, composed by Jordan Nobles and performed by the Windsor Symphony Orchestra for the Windsor Canadian Music Festival.
Running Time: 9:00 / Excerpt Above: 1:30 (click to watch)
Custom-printed biodegradable balloons, wildflower seeds, helium, hemp
500 biodegradable balloons with printed message filled with helium and wildflower seeds.
Running Time: 13:00 / Excerpt Above: 1:30 (click to watch)
Running Time: 5:19 / Excerpt Above: 1:30 (click to watch)
Running Time: 5:20 / Excerpt Above: 1:30 (click to watch)
Running Time: 6:00 / Excerpt Above: 1:30 (click to watch)
Monofilament Line, Push Pins
Project exploring social connections, space, and lines.
Custom Software / Projection
Data-driven installation programmed used Max/MSP/Jitter that created video distortion of a commercial for a Dodge Caravan in response to 25-years unemployment statistics for Windsor, Ontario, where the minivan has been made since 1984. Exhibited as part of the Labour Arts Festival at Artcite Inc. in Windsor, Ontario.
Custom Software / Projection
Data-driven installation programmed using Quartz Composer and Max/MSP/Jitter, which drew text live from the internet based on the search string, “I’m in love…”, creating layers of text and a corresponding sound collage collected from sitcom episodes in which characters professed their love for one another.