Tuesday, 18 March 2014

GUESTures in 'Border Cultures: Part Two (work, labour)' Art Gallery Windsor, Canada

Border Cultures: Part Two (work, labour)
January 25 – April 13, 2014
Art Gallery Windsor, Canada

Participating artists: C.A.M.P. (India), Sam Durant (USA), Philip Hoffman (Canada), Marisa Jahn(USA), Reena Katz (Canada), Margareta Kern (UK), Kero and Annie Hall (Canada), Vince Kogut(Canada), Min Sook Lee and Deborah Brandt (Canada), Ken Lum (Canada), Dylan Miner(M├ętis), Precarious Workers Brigade (UK), Martha Rosler (USA), Andrea Slavik (Canada), David Taylor (USA)

Margareta Kern, GUESTures 2011 (right), Ken Lum, Melly Shum Hates Her Job, 1989 (back)

Following the launch of the multi-year Border Cultures series with the award-winning Part One (homes, land) in 2013, the AGW continues its research and discussion around the geographic, political and socio-economic context of the Windsor-Detroit region with the second edition of the series. Border Cultures: Part Two (work, labour) examines the changing labour market in our globalized economies and the in-between space of the borderlands where free-flowing capital and the uneasy movements of the stratified work force encounter one another. Capital flows more easily than people to fulfill the demands of our consumer-based societies. Corporations set up factories and sweatshops across the world, employing thousands of people under precarious conditions at low wages. Similarly, while outsourcing North American jobs has adversely impacted its working and middle-classes, there is continued dependence on migrant workers in the agricultural, domestic and service sectors that are invisible in the public realm. 

Part Two draws inspiration from the history of social struggles in the region, such as the Underground Railroad, the anti-segregation protests in the auto factories, and generations of migrant workers who contributed to the regional economy. The artists examine these histories that have crossed boundaries and brought people together, highlighting the strategies used by them to survive and thrive. By expressing solidarity through DIY kits to humorous posters that riff on pop culture and street art, the artists look back through official labour archives and respond with personal histories. For Border Cultures: Part Two (work, labour), the gallery will transform from a performance space to a place for discussion and community gathering to paying homage to the labour of artists, organizers and everyday folk whose work obscure the confines of national boundaries. 

Curated by Srimoyee Mitra