PRESS RELEASE – AM at TORONTO UNION
Art Metropole is pleased to announce a new project at Union Station, developed in partnership with Toronto Union, with support from Toronto Friends of the Visual Arts and Trinity Square Video.
Founded in Toronto in 1974, Art Metropole is a not-for-profit organisation with a focus on the distribution and contextualisation of publications by artists in any media, especially those formats that are predisposed to sharing and circulation. Since the 1970s, it has sought out innovative ways to distribute artists’ work, and connect artists with new publics.
Building on the work begun by AM’s previous public art projects, Art Metropole has invited artists to consider the site of Toronto Union, and spend two weeks “in residence” creating work that responds to Union Station and its transient public. This project is called AM/UNION.
Art Metropole is pleased to announce poet and dancer Aisha Sasha John as the project’s first invitee. John has invited four collaborators – Marvin Luvualu Antonio, Adjua Anthony Ito, Jiva MacKay and Emerson Maxwell – to join her to produce a series of short videos, and to spend time occupying the station. Over two weeks, they will collectively address the question: what does it mean to be here (together)? John and her collaborators will be in residence at Union Station between the 14-20 of February. Video produced during this period will be displayed intermittently on the digital columns in Union Station’s GO concourse beginning in March of 2017.
Union Station –– Canada’s busiest transit hub –– is transforming into a civic destination for exploring the best of Toronto’s culinary, cultural, and retail offerings. Art Metropole at Toronto Union was made possible with the generous support of the Toronto Friends of the Visual Arts Project Award, and produced in partnership with Toronto Union Inc and Trinity Square Video.
Danielle St Amour
Director, Art Metropole
*PROJECT DETAILS *
Aisha Sasha John – Let’s understand what it means to be here (together)
With Marvin Luvualu Antonio, Adjua Anthony Ito, Jiva MacKay and Emerson Maxwell.
I have asked four people I dream with to join me in a research residency at Union Station. My practice as an artist is an investigation of what it means to be alive, and here, on Earth, at this present moment. Every artistic project I undertake is in the service of this query. Union Station is an exciting location – its centrality, and proximity to major municipal institutions means it serves a public perfect in its broadness. What does it mean, as an artist, to have access to a large chunk of everyone? What art can serve the audience of everybody? The aim and title of the project are one: Let’s understand what it means to be here (together).
Aisha Sasha John is a poet and dancer. I have to live, Aisha’s third collection of poems, will be published by McClelland and Stewart this spring. Her previous collection, THOU (BookThug 2014) was a finalist for both the Trillium Book Award for Poetry and the ReLit Poetry Award. John creates solo performances (the aisha of oz, VOLUNTEER) in addition to choreographing, performing and curating as a member of the performance collective WIVES. In January 2017, ACTION MOVIE, WIVES’ performance of a live action movie, debuted in Montreal at La Chapelle Scènes Contemporaines to great praise. Aisha’s video work has been exhibited at Doris McCarthy Gallery and Oakville Galleries; she has presented talks at numerous art institutions in Toronto including the Art Gallery of Ontario, Mercer Union and the Power Plant. Aisha has an M.F.A. in Creative Writing from the University of Guelph, and a B.A. in African Studies and Semiotics from the University of Toronto. She was born in Montreal.
let's understand at union station. Aisha Sasha John.