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Publications

desire_change
Since 2013, I have been working as Managing Editor on a new publication on contemporary feminist art in Canada, commissioned by Mentoring Artists for Women’s Art (MAWA), and edited by Heather Davis.

In the resistance to the violence of gender-based oppression, vibrant – but often ignored – worlds have emerged, full of nuance, humour, and beauty. Correcting an absence of writing about contemporary feminist work by Canadian artists, Desire Change considers the resurgence of feminist art, thought, and practice in the past decade by examining artworks that respond to themes of diversity and desire.

Essays by historians, artists, and curators present an overview of a range of artistic practices including performance, installation, video, textiles, and photography. Contributors address the desire for change through three central frames: how feminist art has significantly contributed to the complex understanding of gender as it intersects with sexuality and race; the necessary critique of patriarchy and institutions as they relate to colonization within the Canadian national-state; and the ways in which contemporary critiques are formed and expressed. The resulting collection addresses art through an activist lens to examine intersectional feminism, decolonization, and feminist institution building in a Canadian context.

Heavily illustrated with representative works, Desire Change raises both the stakes and the concerns of contemporary feminist art, with an understanding that feminism is always and necessarily plural.

Contributors include Janice Anderson (Concordia University), Gina Badger (artist, writer, editor, Toronto), Amber Christensen (curator and writer, Toronto), Karin Cope (NSCAD), Lauren Fournier (artist, writer, and curator, York University), Amy Fung (curator and writer, Toronto), Kristina Huneault (Concordia University), Alice Ming Wai Jim (Concordia University), Tanya Lukin Linklater (artist, North Bay), Sheila Petty (University of Regina), Kathleen Ritter (curator and writer, Vancouver), Daniella Sanader (curator and writer, Toronto), Thérèse St. Gelais (UQAM), cheyanne turions (curator and writer, Toronto), Ellyn Walker (Queen’s University), Jayne Wark (NSCAD) and Jenny Western (curator and writer, Winnipeg).

Copublished by Mentoring Artists for Women’s Art and McGill Queen’s University Press.

Invited contribution for Textile: The Journal of Cloth and Culture (Taylor and Francis) special issue on “Crafting Community” edited by Kirsty Robertson and Lisa Vinebaum.

Abstract
Traditional craft practice has long emphasized features of function and materiality, with the useful and skillfully produced object at the center of the way craft is read and understood. However, a number of recent exhibitions and artworks have included not just objects, but also craft set in motion through participatory projects or performances. Correspondingly, the crafted object has undergone a shift in its once-central role, serving instead as a record of an event or process, a prop or tool, and in some cases disappearing altogether. Through a consideration of select projects and curatorial strategies from Common Threads at the Illingworth Kerr Gallery in Calgary, AB (2008), and Gestures of Resistance at the Museum of Contemporary Craft in Portland, OR (2010), this article argues that it is necessary to consider how the histories and theories of performance art are intersecting with contemporary craft practices, with a particular focus on the role of documentation and ephemeral traces.

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Instant Coffee, Bass Benches. Common Threads, curated by Lee Plested at the Illingworth Kerr Gallery, Calgary, AB. November 22, 2007 to January 5, 2008. Photo courtesy of Illingworth Kerr Gallery.

Craft on Demand: The New Politics of the Handmade is a forthcoming publication on contemporary craft politics edited by Anthea Black and Nicole Burisch. The book features new texts and artist projects by international scholars and practitioners who activate craft as a critical field for understanding and thinking through the most immediate political, economic, and aesthetic issues of our time.

For more than a century, craft has been positioned as both a fix and foil for capitalism and the alienating conditions of industrialization. Today the increased connections between craft, art, design, and manufacturing have paralleled dramatic shifts in the global economy, becoming virtually inseparable from capitalist modes of production and consumption. Contemporary interest in virtually every aspect of the handmade has found varied expressions through Do-It-Yourself, Craftivism, sustainable living, medical and military applications, and a new focus on labour and materiality in visual art and museum cultures. Practitioners have further hybridized craft media and processes through cross-disciplinary collaboration and digital culture, leading to new senses of craft’s relevance as a public discourse. Just as being ‘on demand’ signals a new relationship to production and consumption, Craft on Demand aims to rethink the role of the handmade in contemporary culture across a variety of sites.

Acknowledgements:
Black and Burisch wish to acknowledge the support of Canada Council for the Arts, Grants to Independent Critics and Curators, Ontario Arts Council Craft Projects – Connections, and The Center for Craft Creativity and Design.

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The Ladies’ Invitational Deadbeat Society’s limited edition DO LESS WITH LESS / DO MORE WITH MORE cross stitch pattern poster was printed at the Alberta Printmakers’ Society in June 2012. The slogan on the original posters was inspired by a discussion during Artivistic’s Promiscuous Infrastructures project at Centre des arts actuels Skol in Montréal, Québec about how artists and non-profit arts organizations negotiate the constant pressure to do more with less. With this poster reissue for FUSE Magazine‘s last issue, LIDS proposes that we resist the capitalist logic of constant acceleration, productivity, and austerity budgets by reasserting a realistic level of production within our means. Use LIDS’ handy pull out pattern to stitch a banner for your own office and hang in the orientation of your choice! A version of the poster was also printed in PHONEBOOK 4, directory of independent art spaces, programs, and projects in the United States, in 2015; and was included in the exhibition Beginning with the Seventies: Glut, at the Morris and Helen Belkin Art Gallery, Vancouver, BC in 2018.

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Ladies Invitational Deadbeat Society, DO LESS WITH LESS / DO MORE WITH MORE, FUSE Magazine 31-1 WINTER 2013-14 PATTERN PULLOUT.

Photo credits: Olya Zarapina

Hay in a Haystack :: Du foin dans une meule de foin
crafty excerpts from Artexte’s collection :: extraits artisanaux de la collection d’Artexte
A limited-edition bookwork based on my 2012-2013 research residency at Artexte, available for consultation on-site at Artexte.
A small print-on-demand publication that includes a sampling of the excerpts in the bookwork is also available for purchase.

(La version française suit)

strata; transparencies; bonding; bound and buried cores; nervous energy, work energy, calm; body containing, body projecting; logical secrets; fragments meeting on a grid; progressive processes; repetition of gesture, of form, of line, of activity, of action; repetition in time and as time; serial rhythms flexed and measured; motion, muscle, touch; fetishes dissected and respected; abstract ritual; taut/loose, tension/freedom, part/whole, microcosm, macrocosm, distance/intimacy, interior/exterior; structure stretched, geometry thwarted into growth, memory compacted into layers, indoors outdoors, outdoors indoors; empty centers, open spaces; animal, vegetable, mineral, flesh.

Lucy Lippard, catalogue for Strata, Vancouver Art Gallery, 1977

Central to my research over the past few years has been the issue of how craft is perceived or represented. Rather than being a question of definition (what is craft?), this is a question about how craft or a crafted aesthetic is used to represent certain values or affiliations (more like why craft?). In particular, this line of inquiry has focused on the ways that craft, from its position on the margins of traditional art historical discourse, has often been used as a means to signal an affiliation with alternative lifestyles or politicized art practices.

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mille_feuilles_2
Lancement
Lieu : atelier b. (5758 boul. Saint-Laurent, Montréal)
Date : le vendredi 23 août, dès 17 h.
événement facebook

Les textes de Nicole Burisch et d’Andréanne Godin se rencontrent autour de souvenirs de la maison et du territoire originels, d’où s’étaient tissés des liens solides en apparence qui, avec le temps, se sont fragilisés, dénoués, puis reformés.

Cette publication est la deuxième parution de Mille-feuille, projet de micro-édition de courts textes littéraires et poétiques faisant écho à des œuvres d’arts visuels. Pour cette édition, Nicole Burisch a été invitée à écrire un texte en réponse à l’œuvre de l’artiste Andréanne Godin.

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Launch
Place : atelier b. (5758 boul. Saint-Laurent, Montréal)
Date : Friday August 23, at 5pm.
Facebook event

Texts by Nicole Burisch and Andréanne Godin converge around recollections of home and landscape, places with which seemingly solid ties were woven—ties which over time became fragile, came undone, and then re-formed.

This publication is the second issue of Mille-feuille, a micro-publishing project that presents short literary and poetic texts that respond to works of visual art. For this issue, Nicole Burisch was invited to write a text in response to a work by the artist Andréanne Godin.

renseignements / information
mille-feuilles.ca
info@mille-feuilles.ca

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The Ladies Invitational Deadbeat Society (LIDS) and friends will be converging in Toronto at the end of May for a performance by Wednesday L AND an official BBQ book launch with our feminist pals! Join us on Sunday May 26th at 3pm at the Feminist Art Gallery for the launch of our new publication.

The publication documents our 2012 residency, the Incredisensual Panty Raid Laff Along and is now available through local LIDS distributors near you! This handy volume gathers together materials produced during the residency: photographs, texts, recollections, and ephemera. Designed by Olya Zarapina, this publication also features 3 new texts by feminist scholars Jennifer Kennedy, Mireille Perron, and Amy Fung.

Sixty of the books are covered in limited edition dust jackets/posters that we printed at the Alberta Printmakers’ Society in June 2012. The slogan on the posters: “Do More With More, Do Less With Less,” was inspired by a discussion about how non-profit arts organizations negotiate the increasing pressure to participate in business-based models and the “cultural industry.” A PDF excerpt of the publication, with an edited transcript of one of our Sunday Tea n’ Chats discussions, The Value Of Our (Collective) Work is available as a free sneak preview.