art and projects > - Shore Lunch

Shore Lunch in Clarkson as part of the Work of Wind exhibition presented by Blackwood Gallery.
Shore Lunch - Clarkson, Ontario
wall tent, food cart, kiosk

In this image the participant is picking up a camp kit bag which contains items that will guide him between the multiple sites of Shore Lunch. The instructions have three stages: Contemplation One, Contemplation Two and Contemplation Three.

Contemplation One invites the audience safely across the road to the Shore Lunch food cart, set up for self serve, the audience can help themselves to a cup of watermelon juice. Across the fence at the tropical fruit distribution company happens to be an overflowing garbage bin of watermelons. The contemplation asks the audience to raise their cup to the watermelons acknowledging their presence, their decay and movement through the food system.

The most recent iteration of Shore Lunch was in Clarkson/Mississauga and delved into the history of fruit farms in the area and acknowledged the Anishinaabe and Haudenosaunee workers who traveled from reserves in Central Ontario to pick fruit in this Lake Ontario region. Drawing from written history and stories from community and family, I created three structures on three sites. Each site offered interaction and hospitality. One site had the Shore Lunch mobile camp kitchen cart as a space for potentially sharing food and stories, the second was a wall tent encampment set up for the transient visitors passing by.

Visitors borrowed small picnic bags created using old money bags. Contained inside the bags were instructions and food items to be consumed at different sites with recommended gestures to perform with the food in relation to each site. The instruction were written as three contemplations guiding participant's movement between sites. From a wall tent to a food cart, to a self-chosen picnic site and the final structure was a small shack, furnished to convey the history of migrant labour, including Indigenous workers. Considering this migrant worker history also means thinking about migrant labour within the current food systems. Shore Lunch also hosted a conversation with current migrant worker activists and descendants of Indigenous farm workers.

Shore Lunch creates a space to camp out for a while to acknowledge the different kinds of sustenance we get from a place.