Graduate Gallery, OCADU
Cooked up and curated by Lisa Myersclick here for images of the exhibition
Opening at the OCAD University Graduate Gallery on Wednesday, April 27 and continuing through Saturday, May 7, Best Before features the work of KC Adams, Keesic Douglas, Cheryl LHirondelle, Peter Morin and Suzanne Morrissette. These artists reference or present food in their artwork that function as personal markers of their histories, home, family and community, at the same time signaling and addressing the legacy of colonization and the global food system.
For Best Before, KC Adams's artwork was inspired by her Grandmothers pancake recipe. By using sugar, flour, salt, milk and lard, she identifies the significance of these white ingredients and their implication in the outbreak of diabetes in Aboriginal communities. In her art practice, Adams explores the relationship between nature (the living) and technology (progress). She employs a range of materials and media such as sculpture, installation, drawing, painting, photography, ceramics, printmaking and kinetic art. Adams work has been exhibited nationally and internationally in solo and group exhibitions at Odd Gallery, Parramatta Artist Studios, MOCCA, PHOTOQUAI: Biennale des Images du Monde, and the National Museum of the American Indian, among others.
In his photographs for Best Before, Keesic Douglas inverts the four healthy food groups to complicate government prescribed dietary regimes. Douglas is an Ojibway artist from Mnjikaning First Nation. He often uses humour and parody to cleverly examine issues of First Nations representation and to address racism and stereotypes. This past winter, Douglas taught youth how to produce short videos as the artist/instructor on the ImagineNative Northern Ontario Film and Video Tour. His artwork has been included in national and international solo and group exhibitions at Urban Shaman Contemporary Aboriginal Art, Harbourfront Centre, La Galerie du Nouvel-Ontario, Belkin Art Gallery, and the Berlin International Film Festival.
Cheryl LHirondelle work for Best Before considers and appropriates Spam both the canned meat and email kind in order to invert meaning and demonstrate value in what most would discard. LHirondelle is a mixed blood (Métis/Cree/German) multi and interdisciplinary artist, singer/songwriter and curator. Using performance and new media, her creative practice investigates the junction of a Cree Worldview in contemporary time and space. Although many of her projects take place outside of art venues, LHirondelle has performed and exhibited her work at the Vancouver International Writers Festival, ImagineNative Film and Media Arts Festival, Walter Phillips Gallery, Glenbow Museum and the Beijing International New Media Arts Exhibition and Symposium, among others.
Bringing together recipes for bannock and for attracting media attention, Peter Morins installation for Best Before includes his bannock cook-off video projected on a series of salmon prints. Food in his work references home and community, as well as serves as a tool for political demonstrations. Morin is of the Crow clan of the Tahltan Nation of Telegraph Creek, British Columbia. Trained as a printmaker, he incorporates interactive performance, installation and activism in his art practice. Morins work has exhibited nationally and internationally in solo and group exhibitions at venues such as the FINA Gallery, Eiteljorg Museum, Open Space, Institute of American Indian Arts, and Urban Shaman Contemporary Aboriginal Art.
Using a homemade mathematical formula/recipe to visually convey and encode her family tea picking expeditions, Suzanne Morrissette examines issues of identity in her artwork for Best Before. Morrissette is an interdisciplinary artist, writer and curator born in Winnipeg, Manitoba. She works in textiles, ceramics, drawing, painting, installation and new media. This year she will be presenting her MFA thesis research on the narratives of place at the National Museum of the American Indian in New York City. Morrissettes artwork has been included in exhibitions nation wide at Urban Shaman Contemporary Aboriginal Art, Thunderbird House and Charles H. Scott Gallery.
Cooked up and curated by Lisa Myers, MFA student in OCAD University's Criticism and Curatorial Practice program, Best Before represents her thesis research on the role of food in Aboriginal Art practice. As an artist, curator and chef, Myers investigates the complex issues raised when analyzing artworks addressing cultural agency and the encoding of food from Aboriginal perspectives. She relates the acculturation of so-called Aboriginal cuisine with artworks that unmask the lived experiences of a continuing colonial legacy where food sources play a key role.http://www.ocad.ca/about_ocad/galleries/