TORNADO TAG TEAM Artistic, Cultural, and Activist Responses to TAG TEAM: Gay Premises and Gay Premises: Radical Voices in the Archive, 1973-1983
August 28, 2013 @ 7:00 pm - 9:00 pm
Wednesday, August 28, 2013
Reception date & time:
August 28, 2013, 7:00-9:00 pm
TORNADO TAG TEAM
Artistic, Cultural, and Activist Responses to TAG TEAM: Gay Premises and Gay Premises: Radical Voices in the Archive, 1973-1983
Artist/Curator Tour, Video Screening, and a Public Conversation
Wednesday, August 28, 2013, 7:00-9:00 pm
Canadian Lesbian and Gay Archives
34 Isabella Street, Toronto
Sharlene Bamboat & Dina Georgis, Anthea Black, Eugenio Salas, and Robert Waters
Elspeth Brown, Richard Fung, Sara Matthews, Cait McKinney, Alexis Mitchell, Trish Salah, and Rinaldo Walcott
Dina Georgis and Erin Silver
The term “tornado tag team” refers to a style of tag team wrestling in which all participants are allowed to be in the ring at once. TORNADO TAG TEAM, part of TAG TEAM: Gay Premises, is the culmination of projects and interventions created and enacted by artists Sharlene Bamboat & Dina Georgis, Anthea Black, Eugenio Salas, and Robert Waters at The ArQuives during the 2013 Pride exhibition Gay Premises: Radical Voices in the Archives, 1973-1983. Having accepted an invitation to reflect on and respond to not only Gay Premises, but also broader histories of The Body Politic, The ArQuives, and gay liberation, the artists that form TAG TEAM now reveal the outcome, both anticipated and unanticipated, of their archival excavations and creations and share their reflections on interpreting the archive through the privilege of the queer present.
Joining Bamboat & Georgis, Black, Salas, and Waters for this final intervention at The ArQuives, a group of Toronto-based artists, academics, cultural workers, and activists will respond to both Gay Premises: Radical Voices in the Archives, 1973-1983 and TAG TEAM: Gay Premises in the form of a tag team conversation. This conversation will include short commentaries on the artists’ works, the curatorial premise, the exhibition to which TAG TEAM responds, and the politics, problems, and potential of mutability in queer archiving from a variety of generational perspectives and positionalities. The format of the conversation will be a playful, experimental form of knowledge-sharing that encourages both interruption and flow.
Image: Still image from In Queer Corners (Sharlene Bamboat & Dina Georgis). Image courtesy of The ArQuives.
VIDEO: Watch Sharlene Bamboat and Dina Georgis’ video collaboration, In Queer Corners (2013), here: https://vimeo.com/73004779
BIOGRAPHIES OF ARTISTS
Sharlene Bamboat is a mixed media artist, working predominantly in film, video and performance. Through a re-examination of history, Bamboat elicits tongue-in-cheek videos and performances to question our contemporary moment marked by colonialism and neoliberalism. Bamboat works largely in collaboration, most notably as part of Bambitchell with artist Alexis Mitchell. Her work has been exhibited internationally. She is on the programming committee of the Pleasure Dome Film & Video Collective, and works as the Artistic Director for SAVAC (South Asian Visual Arts Centre) in Toronto.
Anthea Black is a Canadian artist, writer, and cultural worker. Her work in print, textiles, performance and video sets a stage for collaborative encounters and inserts intimate gestures into public spaces. She has exhibited throughout Canada and the United States and has circulated collaborative print editions in cities across North America through her ongoing artist-curatorial project, looking for love in all the wrong places. Her writing has appeared in numerous publications and her collaborative writing with Nicole Burisch is included in The Craft Reader (BERG, 2010) and Extra/ordinary: Craft and Contemporary Art (Duke University Press, 2011). Her most recent curatorial project, No Place: Queer Geographies on Screen, considers the spatial politics of queer film and video.
Eugenio Salas (Mexico City, 1976) is a Toronto-based artist. His practice seeks to disrupt social roles and dynamics, exploring the symbolic spaces that unfold. He carries out collaborative site-specific and process-based performances, employing intervention, video, film, animation, photography, artist books and installation mediums.
Robert Waters (London, Ontario 1974) is a Canadian artist currently living in the Basque Country, Spain. His multi-disciplinary practice explores social and epistemological transformations that enlighten processes of human domestication and constraint. Presenting the human body and art as sources of political action, his work provokes a questioning of self-knowledge and social control, with the aim of finding and demonstrating possibilities for emancipation and freedom. He has exhibited on five different continents and is represented in Toronto by pm Gallery. (www.robertwaters.ca)
BIOGRAPHIES OF COMMENTATORS
Elspeth H. Brown is an Associate Professor of History and the Director of the Centre for the Study of the United States and the American Studies Program, University of Toronto (http://www.utoronto.ca/). Her research focuses on U.S. social and cultural history from the Gilded Age through the 1980s. Professor Brown’s work has focused on the rationalization of the body under advanced capitalism, with a specific interest in the historical relationship between visuality and subject formation, including racial, class, gender and sexual difference. She has received fellowships from the Getty Research Institute; the National Museum of American History; the American Council of Learned Societies; the Social Science and Humanities Research Council of Canada; the Library of Congress Kluge Center; the American Philosophical Society, and others. She is the author of The Corporate Eye: Photography and the Rationalization of American Commercial Culture, 1884-1929 (Johns Hopkins, 2005) and co-editor of Cultures of Commerce: Representation and American Business Culture, 1877-1960 (Palgrave, 2006).
Richard Fung is a Toronto-based video artist, writer and activist. His tapes include Orientations: Lesbian and Gay Asians (1985), My Mother’s Place (1990), Dirty Laundry (1996), Sea in the Blood (2000) and Dal Puri Diaspora (2012). He is the co-author with Monika Kin Gagnon of 13: Conversations on Art and Cultural Race Politics and his essays include the much anthologized “Looking for My Penis: The Eroticized Asian in Gay Video Porn.” Richard is a winner of the Bell Canada and Toronto Arts Awards, among other honours. He teaches in the Faculty of Art at OCAD University.
Sara Matthews is Assistant Professor in the Department of Global Studies at Wilfrid Laurier University. Her interdisciplinary work brings aesthetic and cultural theory to the study of violence and the dynamics of social conflict. Her current research considers how contemporary Canadian War Artists are responding to Canada’s mission in Afghanistan. In addition to her academic work, Sara curates aesthetic projects that archive visual encounters with legacies of war and social trauma. Her critical writing has appeared in PUBLIC, FUSE Magazine and in exhibition essays for the Art Gallery of Bishops University and YYZ.
Cait McKinney is a PhD candidate in the Communication and Culture Program at York University. Her dissertation research examines the cultural politics of online media in queer and feminist archival contexts. Her writing has been published through Shift: Graduate Journal of Visual Culture, TOPIA: Canadian Journal of Cultural Studies, the Sewall Belmont House Museum and Library, and the Visible Cities Project and Archive.
Alexis Mitchell is a Toronto-based media artist and scholar whose work utilizes architecture and the built environment to explore notions of memory, queerness, performance, and contemporary formations of Jewish identity and politics. She received her MFA in Film and Video Production from York University in 2010 where her thesis video CAMP won the award for Best Upcoming Director at the World Film Festival. Other works include: Queeropolis: 1972-2008 in collaboration with Tori Foster and The Break which was awarded a Special Jury Mention at Inside Out Film Festival in Toronto. Mitchell often works in collaboration with artist Sharlene Bamboat under the name Bambitchell. Together their works include a performance-based sound installation entitled Border Sounds and a video series called Citizen Kenney: A Love Letter in 3 Parts. Mitchell is currently pursuing a PhD in Geography at the University of Toronto and is a member of Pleasure Dome’s Programming Collective.
Trish Salah is a writer and a lecturer at the Ontario Institute for Studies in Education at the University of Toronto. Her writing appears in recent issues of The Volta, Feminist Studies, and The Cordite Poetry Review, and in the collections, Troubling the Line, Selling Sex, and Féminismes électriques. Her current research is on the emergence of transsexual and transgender literatures. She sits on the editorial board of TSQ: Transgender Studies Quarterly, and is co-editing the journal’s fourth issue, focused on Trans Cultural Production. She is the author of Wanting in Arabic (TSAR 2002), and recently completed a new poetry manuscript, Lyric Sexology.
Rinaldo Walcott is Associate Professor and Chair of the Department of Sociology and Equity Studies in Education. His research and teaching is in the area of Black Diaspora Cultural Studies with an emphasis on queer sexualities, masculinity and cultural politics. A secondary research area is multicultural and transnational debates with an emphasis on nation, citizenship and coloniality. As an interdisciplinary scholar Rinaldo has published on music, literature, film and theater among other topics. All of Rinaldo’s research is founded in a philosophical orientation that is concerned with the ways in which coloniality shapes human relations across social and cultural time. Rinaldo is the author of Black Like Who: Writing Black Canada (Insonmiac Press, 1997 with a second revised edition in 2003); he is also the editor of Rude: Contemporary Black Canadian Cultural Criticism (Insomniac, 2000); and the Co-editor with Roy Moodley of Counselling Across and Beyond Cultures: Exploring the Work of Clemment Vontress in Clinical Practice (University of Toronto Press, 2010).
BIOGRAPHIES OF REFEREES
Dina Georgis teaches at University of Toronto at the Institute of Women and Gender Studies. She writes on postcolonial, diasporic and queer losses. Interested in the affective residues of trauma in narrative and aesthetic production, her book, The Better Story: Queer affects from the Middle East (SUNY, 2013), considers the emotional dynamics of political conflict and the histories and futures made from them.
Erin Silver completed a PhD in Art History and Gender & Women’s Studies at McGill University in 2013. Her dissertation provided a queer feminist historiographical analysis of histories of North American feminist and queer art production, as framed by feminist and queer alternative art institutions and spaces from 1970 to 2012. Silver has curated several exhibitions, including Coming through the Fog: les rencontres de Matthieu Brouillard et de Donigan Cumming, at the FOFA Gallery in 2012, and is currently working on an exhibition on affect, immersion, and synesthesia in contemporary queer intermedia practices, to open in 2014. Silver has taught Art History at Concordia University, OCAD University, and the University of Guelph. Her writing has been published in C Magazine, Ciel Variable, FUSE Magazine, and No More Potlucks.