Producing a comprehensive program that reflects on the legacy and future of queer creative practices in the province presents unique challenges. I tried to encapsulate the queer legacy of Eastern Edge Gallery while leaving enough room for criticality, the inclusion of works that speak to broader themes of history, and space for artists to determine their own connection to history and the future. This program draws heavily from artists who have previously been showcased at Eastern Edge but also includes artists, both from the province and abroad, who have never shown in the gallery before. I often feel Newfoundlands art community is too insular, and wanted to steer away from the temptation of producing a greatest hits compilation.
Dragged Through History (Thursday July 18th 2019)
Drag has long held an important place within the queer community, St. John’s is no exception. Numerous individuals have dawned many a lewk in the pursuit of weaponized glamor, and this program will primarily focus on drag performances centred around Eastern Edge’s legacy and works that broach broader themes of art history and history. Throughout Eastern Edge’s lifespan Drag Queens have been a regular feature of the centre’s performance events, exhibitions, and festival programming. It is important to acknowledge that there are obvious gaps in this program. Excluded from this program but demanding of acknowledgment is television personality Tommy Sexton (1957–1993) who I once heard described as the RuPaul of Newfoundland, nay Canada. Operating during the time Eastern Edge was forged the attitudes expressed in Sexton’s work on Codco offer an ernest and mockingly sweet image of the creative environment Eastern Edge was borne from.
Included in this program is Mikiki, an artistic agitator largely responsible for Eastern Edge’s transformation into a space that focusses on supporting queer practictioners. Unfortunately I was not able to locate footage of Mikiki’s seminal piece Champagne Enema, a performance I never had the opportunity to see. According to one source Mikiki ejected the champagne in a near perfect stream filling a champagne flute, also escaping into the glass was a small pebble. This glass of champagne was then immediately consumed by one of the audience members pebble and all. Instead we will be showcasing two videos from their Drag Race series and a sermon from their drag persona Rose Beef. Ana Felaxos (Michael Connors Jackman) provocative piece involves them smearing and writhing in peanut butter forcing themselves into anaphylactic shock was documented by Rachel Jean Harding at the 24 Hour Art Marathon (2009). Michael Connors Jackman is a writer, academic, and Instructor at MUN. Rachel Jean Harding documented extensively the early 2000 drag community in St. John’s Newfoundland through photo and video. Irma Gerd (Jason Wells) is Drag Mom of the Phlegm Fatales and host of the never ending forever season of RuPaul’s Drag Race. Lucas Morneau is a Corner Brook based artist who combines drag and mummering in their visual art practice. Jessie Short is a curator, writer and artist whose piece ‘Wake Up!’ sees them transformed into Louis Riel produced as part of ImagineNATIVE/CSIF Mentorship (2015). Miss Chief Eagle Testicle (Kent Monkman), one of Canada’s most politically savvy artists, will give a tour through art history in their exquisite piece ‘Casualties of Modernity’.
Yapping Out Loud (Friday July 19th 2019)
This program begins with a small collection of extremely short films all pertaining to the artists connection to the internet. This fun collection contains work by Paul Wong, a prolific and influential west coast video artist, curator and community organizer who has been described as the Andy Warhol of Canada; Kai Bryan, an artist and curator whose work playfully tackles topics associated with desire and the intimacy of affiliation; Stephen Andrews, a Toronto based artist who uses both traditional and unconventional mediums to engage with mass media imagery; and Irma Gerd (Jason Wells) with a small snippet of a performance from one of their RuPaul screenings. This short screening will take you deep inside the memeverse.
These films are followed by ‘Yapping out Loud: Contagious Thoughts from an Unrepentant Whore’ by Mirha-Soleil Ross and Mark Karbusicky. Mirha-Soleil Ross is a transsexual sexworker, activist, and artist whose prolific work centers around their advocacy. Mark Karbusicky’s (1972-2007) artistic and video directing career often led them to collaborating with Mirha-Soleil Ross. This one woman show is one part comedy special and all parts political commentary. Delivering several monologues cut with animal rights footage Ross advocates for the rights and recognition of humanity for sexworkers by tackling pervasive anti-prostitution stigma.
Hand Over Mouth (Saturday July 20th 2019)
This short screening includes prolific experimental filmmaker Coral Short whose work has shown across the world and centres around queer experiences, and the methods people engage in developing community. Once again we will be showcasing the work of Kai Bryan. Both Short’s work ‘Lesbian Hand Gestures’ and ‘Arrangements’; and Bryan’s work ‘Stone Mouth’ are short erotically charged experimental films that challenge the viewers expectations of how physical longing can be represented.
Concluding this short screening is Hazel Meyer & Cait McKinney’s ‘Slumberparty 2018’, the following description is from the film distribution catalog:
“Slumberparty 2018 is a remake of a 1984 Super 8 film called Slumberparty made by the Positive Pornographers, a mostly queer collective of Toronto-based artists, activists and sex-workers. Commissioned by A-Space Gallery’s “Developing a Women’s Erotic Language on Film” workshop, Slumberparty was made as a direct intervention in Toronto’s feminist porn debates. They wrote, “we didn’t set out to make a work of art. We set out to make something that might turn us on. Join us for what one previewer called “Mary Poppins’ first lesbian orgy.
Slumberparty screened twice in public in 1984 then disappeared until 2016, when the only reel was recovered and digitized. The Positive Pornographers promised each other never to show the film again without everyone’s permission. Using audio-description and obscured editing techniques, Slumberparty 2018 provides access to Slumberparty while preserving the anonymity of its makers. Rethinking what it means to “access” film and video histories, the video draws connections between the feminist “porn wars” of the 1980s, and current feminist debates about the ethics of digitizing sexual imagery in archives.
Original film, Slumberparty, by the Positive Pornographers, 1984” (cfmdc.org catalog, 2018)
Herstory of Porn (Saturday July 20th 2019)
Sex education is often imagined to be an awkwardly clinical and emberassingly alienating experience; the two artists in this screening offer instead a more exciting teaching approach. First we will start off with work by Toronto based videomaker Richard Fung who teaches us about the importance of condom use and the joy it can bring into your life. This work is followed by Annie Sprinkle’s incredible work ‘Herstory of Porn’.
‘Herstory of Porn’ is a both an educational history of erotic films and “intimate film diary” of Annie Sprinkle’s history of making porn (anniesprinklemovies.com, 1999). Annie Sprinkle has requested audiences be informed this video will start off with works that are a little raunchier as we chronologically work our way towards the artists more feminist and experimental art productions.
“In this history of erotic film class, you will tour the last thirty-five years of pornography and other sexual imagery with performance artist Annie Sprinkle, Ph.D. This documentary, Herstory of Porn, is a brilliant and humorous look at some of the worst and best of video clips from dozens of the 150+ films that Annie made from 1973 to the present.You will see rare hippie porn, early fetish films, feminist porn, art porn, couples’ erotica, transexual docu-porn, classic XXX, and a special training film made to help you get started creating your own erotic videos. Witness Annie Sprinkle’s contribution to the pornification of America.” (anniesprinklemovies.com, 1999)
My Animal Wants and The Land that Carries Me (Saturday July 20th 2019)
Often queer art is only viewed through the lens of sexuality and body politics and seldom allowed the freedom to explore other topics without having its queerness stripped away. In this program we will be showcasing artists who connect to nature, and geographical surroundings as a way of exploring deeper connections to both place and other people.
The first several videos in this collection will explore how artists representations of wild animals, both real and mythical, and zoomorphic creations can act as a perfect representation of the human experience. Starting with ‘Chimera’ by Coral Short, freed by the power of costumes these newly augmented were-humans interact with familiar surroundings in new and unfamiliar ways. Next is ‘Cry of the Loup-garou’ by Glen Gear, a love story between a gargoyle and a werewolf. Glen Gear’s work primarily uses animation as a means of storytelling; their animations are highly informed by research and traditional craft practices. Midi Onodera is easily Canada’s most prolific experimental filmmaker, between 2006 and 2011 having made more than 430 videos. Onodera’s ‘in the coyotes must see the moon…’ is part of their lonely web series. Onodera writes about their practice for this series of films:
“Specifically looking at YouTube, 300 hours of video are uploaded every minute, yet according to TubeMogul, 53% of these videos have fewer than 500 views and about 30% have less than 100 views. That means that there are a lot of lonely videos out there. This project sets out to find “friends” for these digital entities. Each month I found and re-made videos with less than 20 views and then post them back to YouTube to see if I can increase the number of views (friends)…
the coyotes must see the moon… is my statement on political issues revolving around incidents that occurred in 2017, nature trumps man…and that is the extent of my political statement.” (vtape.org, 2017)
Onodera is correct. Nature will always trump man, it is man’s hubris to think anything different. To emphasize this difficult dynamic between human civilization and nature we will move on to Toronto based performance artist Jess Dobkin’s ‘Being Green’. In this video the artist performs Kermit the frogs It’s not Easy being Green, considering the current socio-economic forces driving capitalism it certainly is not.
Moving into the second portion of this screening we will now focus on works that speak directly of how connections to geographical location inform identity. Starting this portion of the screening is Glen Gear’s ‘Ikuma Siku’ which loosely translates to fire and ice in Inuktitut. Gear describes this work as “The animation is an intimate vignette into the day-to-day life and internal thoughts of a settler at this time. It is a story rooted in the facts of my father’s Inuit ancestry as well as my own personal and poetic interpretation of this past” (vimeo.com/glenngear, 2013). This piece is followed by another work by Gear titled ‘Resettlement [floating home]’ and retells the well known story of resettlement in the province of Newfoundland and Labrador through the 1950’s to 70’s via animation. ‘Two to a Blanket, Feet to the fire’ and then In ‘The Golden Rods’ both by Jamie Ross mixing archival footage and pagan rituals they explore male homosociality and their pagan connections to nature in these two films. Followed by Ross’s pagan rituals Sasha Wortzel’s ‘We Have Always Been on Fire’ takes place on Fire Island and “performer/artist Morgan Bassichis casts a spell to conjure the island’s queer ghosts into the present” (sashawortzel.com, 2018).
Taking a detour towards camp Mark Adams gives us the Newfoundland tourism ad we didn’t know we needed as they take us on a tour of the battery with Crystal Waters. Concluding this screening we move on to celebrated honorary queer Guy Maddin’s infamous and delightful work ‘Sissy Boy Slap Party’. Situated in a lush tropical serene setting this video does what it says on the can, a lot of boys slapping boys in a beautiful landscape.
Water Makes Us Wet (Saturday July 20th 2019)
Concluding this screening series will be three videos exploring the nature of water. The Nature of how water behaves, an imminent threat, a potential lover for the right suitor. Surrounded, engulfed, and at the mercy of water we obey its whims. We are rewarded when it is bountiful, and punished when it is whipped into a frothy angry frenzy. This provinces past and future is linked to our relationship with water. The island surrounded by it and the borders of The Big Land defined by its reach. As a province we celebrate large chunks of frozen water as they approach our shores.
Water’s fate is partially within our control.
This screening starts with Midi Onodera’s work ‘down the drain’
“down the drain was composed of YouTube videos shot by Martin Briseno. I sent Martin a YouTube message to thank him for inspiring this video but I never heard back. I assume Martin is a plumber or a drain inspector since all the footage was shot with a “drain camera.” (vtape.org, 2017)
Following ‘down the drain’ is ContraPoints ‘The Apocalypse’,which asked the important question “Is it hot in here or is the world just like this now?” (contrapoints, 2018). ContraPoints is the philosophical web channel of Natalie Wynn “YouTuber, ex-philosopher. Sex, drugs, and social justice” (contrapoints, 2018). In ‘The Apocalypse’ Wynn lays down an important truth if we don’t take the threat of global warming seriously then the ocean is going to become humanities fiercest enemy, and she will win.
Knowing we have wronged our planet Beth Stephens & Annie Sprinkle work towards mending humanity’s relationship with the environment through their eco sexual art interventions. In a recent Facebook post Annie Sprinkle states “We know we can’t “save the Earth” with our ecosex art projects. That’s beyond our capabilities. But what we can do is be YENTAS, matchmakers, and help people connect with and deepen their love relationship with Earth. That’s our little niche. ” (Annie Sprinkle, 2019)
I am excited to conclude this screening series with ‘Water Makes us Wet’ with the hopes that we can rediscover a love for the surroundings that nourish us, and revel in being one of our planet’s many polyamourous lovers instead of being its mortal enemy. This work is both a documentary and a love letter to the world, it had its world premiere at Documenta 14 in 2017 and recently was shown at MOMA.
“With a poetic blend of curiosity, humor, sensuality and concern, this film chronicles the pleasures and politics of H2O from an ecosexual perspective. Travel around with Annie, a former sex worker, Beth, a professor, and their dog Butch, in their E.A.R.T.H. Lab mobile unit, as they explore water in the Golden State. Ecosexuality shifts the metaphor “Earth as Mother” to “Earth as Lover” to create a more reciprocal and empathetic relationship with the natural world. Along the way, Annie and Beth interact with a diverse range of folks including performance artists, biologists, water treatment plant workers, scholars and others, climaxing in a shocking event that reaffirms the power of water, life and love.” (watermakesuswet.ucsc.edu, 2018)
Dragged Through History
Thursday July 18th 2019
7:00 pm – 9:00 pm
Doors open at 6:30 pm
Drag Race X – Mikiki (2007) 4 min 35 sec
Performance at 24 Hour Art Marathon – Ana Felaxos/Michael Connors Jackman and Rachel Jean Harding (2009) 15 min 1 sec
Death Race – Mikiki (2011) 6 min 52 sec
Artist as Present – Irma Gerd 2 min 42 sec
Rib Bone – Lucas Morneau (2018) 23 sec
Wake Up! – Jessie Short (2015) 5 min 58 sec
Seance – Kent Monkman (2010) 3 min 46 sec
Casualties of Modernity – Kent Monkman (2015) 14 min 20 sec
Mikiki Rose Beef sermon – TBD
Yapping Out Loud
Friday July 19th 2019
7:00 pm – 9:00 pm
Doors open at 6:30 pm
Year of GIF – Paul Wong (2013) 5 min 44 sec
Quicktime Interruptus – Stephen Andrews (2004) 1 min 30 sec
Pussy / cat – Kai Bryan (2017) 29 sec
Disoriental – Paul Wong (2014) 1 min 15 sec
Plastic Bag – Irma Gerd (2017) 23 sec
[no intermission – brief pause]
Yapping Out Loud: Contagious Thoughts from an Unrepentant Whore – Mirha-Soleil Ross and Mark Karbusicky 1 hour 14 min
Hand over Mouth
Saturday July 20th 2019
Lesbian Hand Gestures – Coral Short (2012) 2 min 54 sec
Arrangement – Coral Short (2014) 3 min 26 sec
Stone Mouth – Kai Bryan (2014) 3 min 14 sec
Slumberparty 2018 – Hazel Meyer & Cait McKinney (2018) 25 min 33 sec
Steam Clean – Richard Fung (1990) 3 min 30 sec
HERSTORY OF PORN – Annie Sprinkle (1999) 1 hour 10 min
My Animal Wants and The Land that Carries Me
Saturday July 20th 2019
1:00 pm – 3:30 pm
Chimera – Coral Short (2016) 5 min 27 sec
Cry of the Loup-garou – Glen Gear (2014) 4 min 19 sec
the coyotes must see the moon… – Midi Onodera (2017) 1 min 38 sec
Being Green – Jess Dobkin (2011) 3 min 30 sec
Ikuma Siku – Glenn Gear (2013) 6 min 58 sec
Resettlement [floating home] – Glenn Gear (2013) 3 min 16 sec
Two to a Blanket, Feet to the Fire – Jamie Ross (2012) 8 min 40 sec
In the Golden Rods – Jamie Ross (2015) 1 min 47 sec
We have always been on fire – Sasha Wortzel 5 min 57 sec
Like you and me – Mark Adams (unknown) 1 min 44 sec
Sissy Boy Slap Party – Guy Maddin (2004) 6 min 19 sec
Water Makes us Wet
Saturday July 20th 2019
7:00 pm – 11:00 pm
Down the Drain – Midi Onodera (2017) 1 min 26 sec
The Apocalypse – ContraPoints (2018) 24 min 23 sec
Water Makes us Wet – Annie Sprinkle & Beth Stephens (2017) 1 hour 20 min
Jamie Ross is a visual artist, preschool teacher and witch. His award-winning video works have screened on four continents. He works as a professional card-reading diviner, a consulting spellworker and as the first Pagan chaplain for men incarcerated in federal prisons in Quebec. In his practice, he aims to create space for contemplation, sensitivity and being together. Jamie lives in Tiohtià:ke (Montreal).
Lucas Morneau is an interdisciplinary artist from Corner Brook, Newfoundland and Labrador, Canada. Morneau received his Bachelor of Fine Arts in Visual Arts at Memorial University – Grenfell Campus in 2016, where he spent a semester abroad in Old Harlow, England, and his Master of Fine Arts (Studio Art) at University of Saskatchewan in 2018. Using photography, video, printmaking, sculpture, installation, and performance, Morneau’s work is autobiographical and based in social activism. Through his alter-ego The Queer Mummer, Morneau deconstructs gender norms and challenges homophobic and heterosexist attitudes still prevalent in Western society.
Jason Wells is a visual artist and performer in St John’s Newfoundland, and is also known by the name Irma Gerd. Irma is a shapeshifter who uses the power of drag and lip-sync to tell her stories. They are interested in the fluidity of identity, and the documentation of queer history.
Glenn Gear is a filmmaker and interdisciplinary artist of Inuit and Newfoundland heritage currently residing in Montréal. His work often explores personal and cultural connections to land, people, and animals through the use of animation, archives, craft, and research-based investigation. His films have screened in festivals throughout Canada and around the world.
Videos can be seen at: www.vimeo.com/glenngear
Jessie Short is a curator, writer, and multi-disciplinary artist and emerging filmmaker whose work involves memory, multi-faceted existence, Métis history and visual culture. Short obtained an MA degree in 2011 and an Undergraduate degree in 2006, and has also received grants from the Canada Council for the Arts and the Ontario Arts council for her curatorial and film making practice. Short worked in the visual arts department at The Banff Centre for the Arts, and she also spent two years as the executive director of the Aboriginal Curatorial Collective in Toronto, Ontario.
Guy Maddin, a 2015-16 visiting lecturer at Harvard, has created, over the last 30 years, countless shorts and 11 feature films, including the just-completed The Forbidden Room, which premiered at the 2015 Sundance Film Festival, and opened the 2015 Berlin Film Festival Forum. Earlier in his career he helmed Emmy Award-winning ballet film Dracula — Pages from a Virgin’s Diary (2002); The Saddest Music in the World (2003); Tales from the Gimli Hospital (1988), and US National Society of Film Critics Best Experimental Film Prize-winners Archangel (1991) and Heart of the World (2001). He is also an internationally acclaimed installation artist and the author of three published books. He is a member of both the Order of Canada and Order of Manitoba, and was awarded the Telluride Silver Medallion for life achievement in film in 1995.
Kai Bryan is an award-winning visual artist, curator, and drag weirdo based in St. John’s, Ktaqmkuk. Their works in video, performance, and installation deploy craft-based practices, cinematic references and eroticism to playfully undermine and question experiences of intimacy, pleasure, and desire. They love large bodies of water, puzzles, and puns.
Mark Adams is a queer artist and drag performer based in St. John’s Newfoundland. His work explores the combination of queer entertainment and dance music culture with the everyday vernacular, conflating and subverting the normal into the uncanny and kitsch.
Mikiki is a performance and video artist and queer community health activist of Acadian/Mi’kmaq and Irish descent from Newfoundland, Canada. Their work has been presented throughout Canada and internationally in self-produced interventions, artist-run centres and public galleries.
Their identity as an artist is informed and intrinsically linked to their history as a sexual health educator, harm reduction worker and activist. Mikiki’s creative themes often address safety and responsibility, disclosure and self-determination, community building and reckoning with trauma and loss.
Jess Dobkin’s performances, artist’s talks and workshops are presented internationally at museums, galleries, theatres, universities and in public spaces. Her creative endeavors have received wide support and recognition, including awards from the Canada Council for the Arts, the Ontario Arts Council, and Toronto Arts Council, and repeated funding from the Franklin Furnace Fund for Performance Art and the Astraea Foundation.
Kent Monkman, born in Canada in 1965, is a Cree artist who is widely known for his provocative interventions into Western European and American art history. He explores themes of colonization, sexuality, loss, and resilience—the complexities of historic and contemporary Indigenous experiences—across a variety of mediums, including painting, film/video, performance, and installation. Monkman’s gender-fluid alter ego Miss Chief Eagle Testickle often appears in his work as a time-traveling, shape-shifting, supernatural being who reverses the colonial gaze to challenge received notions of history and Indigenous peoples.
Midi Onodera is a Japanese-Canadian artist born and raised in Toronto, Canada. She is an award-winning filmmaker who has been making films and videos for over thirty years. Her work explores social constructions of sexuality, gender, race and culture. She has over twenty-five independent short films to her credit as well as a theatrical feature film and an abundance of short videos. Her recent works feature a collage of formats and mediums ranging from 16mm film to analogue video to digital video and “low end” digital toy formats. From 2006 to 2010, Midi has made over 430 online videos or “Vidoddles” for projects that include: A Movie A Day, Movie of the Week and Baker’s Dozen.
Richard Fung is a Toronto-based videomaker and writer. His tapes, which explore the intersection of race, sexuality and representation, have been widely screened and collected internationally, and his essays on cultural policy and politics have been published in many journals and anthologies. Richard frequently programs film and video, and has served on the boards and committees of many organizations. He has lectured and taught across North America and is the recipient of many awards, including Rockefeller and McKnight Foundation fellowships, The 2000 Margo Bindhardt Award and most recently The Bell Canada award for excellence in media arts.
Mirha-Soleil Ross is a performance artist, videomaker, transsexual activist, curator, sexworker. Transplanted Québécois Ross is Toronto’s most visible and prolific transgender cultural voice. The star of the National Film Board’s well intentioned documentary In the Flesh (Gordon McLennan, 2000, 47), Ross’s sixteen or so own video productions have much more raw artistic energy and political bite—“gut-busting, ass-erupting and immoderately whorish,” as she says in the compilation of video excerpts. The tapes, often made in collaboration with Xanthra MacKay and Mark Karbusicky, blur boundaries among document, demonstration, performance, narrative, autobiography, representation… and provocation. From her own personal body, history and experience to the political fields of reproductive technology and animal rights, Ross’s restless art covers a broad landscape of politics and desire. Ross founded Toronto’s “Counting Past Two” trans-arts festival in 1998.
Mark Karbusicky (1972-2007) accomplished artist, director and editor. Director of Rod Coronado: A Voice for Liberation (2001). Collaborator with Mirha-Soleil Ross: Journée Internationale de la Transsexualité (1998), Tales from the Derrière (2000), G-SPrOuT! (2000), Tremblement de Chair (2001), Madame Lauraine’s Transsexual Touch (2001), Lullaby (2001), Yapping Out Loud: Contagious Thoughts from an Unrepentant Whore (2002), Proud Lives (2002), ALLO PERFORMANCE! (2002), MATERSTINA (Langue Maternelle) (2003), Live eXXXpressions: Sex Workers Stand Up (2006), Brandee aka Al Lana Lamarre (2007) and Les Vérités Vo(i)lées (2007). Assistant Editor on Proteus (2004) by John Greyson. Editor of Tom (2002), Imitations of Life (2003), In the Dark (2003), Public Lighting (2004), and Fascination (2006) by Mike Hoolboom.
Michael Connors Jackman PH.D is a writer and researcher and course instructor at Memorial University of Newfoundland and Labrador, who was a long standing performer at the Eastern Edge Art Marathon in the early 2000’s as Ana Felaxos. As Ana Felaxos their performances often involved inducing anaphylactic shock while delivering hard hitting monologues.
Rachel Jean Harding is a photographer and videographer who documented a significant amount of the early 2000’s drag and music scenes capturing a large amount of the queer perfomers featured at Eastern Edge’s 24 hour Art Marathon.
Paul Wong is a media-maestro making art for site-specific spaces and screens of all sizes. He is an award winning artist and curator who is known for pioneering early visual and media art in Canada, founding several artist-run groups, leading public arts policy, and organizing events, festivals, conferences and public interventions since the 1970s. Writing, publishing and teaching have been an important part of his praxis. With a career spanning four decades he has been instrumental proponent to contemporary art.
Stephen Andrews was born in 1956 in Sarnia, Ontario Canada. Over the last twenty five years he has exhibited his work in Canada, the U.S., Brazil, Scotland, France and Japan. He is represented in the collections of the National Gallery of Canada, the Art Gallery of Ontario, the Belkin Art Gallery, the Schwartz Collection, Harvard as well as many private collections. His work deals with memory, identity, technology and their representations in various media including drawing, animation and recently painting.
Sasha Wortzel is an artist and filmmaker working between New York and Florida. Blending documentary and narrative storytelling, her films, installations, and performances explore how structures of power shape our lives around race, gender, desire, and place.
Hazel Meyer is an interdisciplinary artist who works with installation, performance, and text to investigate the relationships between sport, sexuality, feminism, and material culture. Her work aims to recover the queer aesthetics, politics, and bodies often effaced within histories of sports and recreation. Drawing on archival research, she designs immersive installations that bring various troublemakers—lesbians-feminists, gender outlaws, leather-dykes—into the performative spaces of athletics.
Hazel often collaborates with her partner Cait McKinney. These collaborations explore their shared attachments to queer histories through research, writing, and archival interventions.
Beth Stephens & Annie Sprinkle have been partners and collaborators for 16 fertile years. Annie was a sex worker who morphed into an internationally known performance artist touring one-woman shows about her life in sex and a feminist post porn pioneer. Beth was a feisty punk rocker dyke turned interdisciplinary artist and professor at UCSC exploring themes of gender, queerness and feminism. In 2008, Beth and Annie married the Earth and came out as ecosexuals. Their “Ecosex Manifesto” launched a movement and they officially added the E to GLBTQI-E. Their award winning documentary film about coal mining, Goodbye Gauley Mountain—An Ecosexual Love Story is available on iTunes and from Kino Lorber. They just finished a new environmental doc film, Water Makes Us Wet—An Ecosexual Adventure. Currently they are working on a book about their work, “Assuming the Ecosexual Position” for University of Minnesota Press. Their visual art, films and performances were presented the world’s biggest best art exhibit, Documenta 14 in 2016-2017. These girls have gone green and are dirty and proud.
Coral Short was born on a beautiful island off the west coast of Canada and was raised by a lively river in the countryside where her eccentric family lived off the land. She spends a fair amount of time dispersing her magic around the globe – in the air, on railroad tracks and highways all the while curating and doing artist residencies. Coral has lived and created art in Asia, North America, and Europe for the last 15 years. She has many beloved people, communities, and locations that she calls home. Short and her countless projects move at the speed of light; ironically she is the most still when she travels.
RetroFlex would like to acknowledge and thank the generous sponsors and partners who support this project, including Canada Council for the Arts, City of St. John’s, ArtsNL, and St. John’s Pride.