June 26 – October 11, 2015

The Flesh of the World

Works by Katherine Araniello, Ingrid Bachmann, Mowry Baden, Louise Bourgeois, Lisa Bufano, Jason Tschantré, Raphaëlle de Groot, Arseli Dokumaci, Helen Dowling, Lindsay Fisher, Erin Gee, Ann Hamilton, Sara Hendren, Wendy Jacob, Martin Kersels, Noëmi Lakmaier, Tim Lee, Darrin Martin, Bruce Nauman, Carmen Papalia, Catherine Richards, Stelarc, Aaron Williamson, Alexa Wright & Artur Zmijewski
Curated by Amanda Cachia

Co-presented by the Doris McCarthy Gallery & Justina M. Barnicke Gallery/University of Toronto Art Centre

Inspired by the 2015 XVII Pan American and Parapan American Games and the work of the philosopher of phenomenology, Maurice Merleau-Ponty, The Flesh of the World is an exhibition presenting diverse and complex views of the body that might deepen qualities typically associated with competitive sports and games, such as the relationship between the body and technology, and how the senses might offer new forms of knowledge to corporeal performance and potential. The Flesh of the World will push the limits of the body and challenge dominant culture’s understanding of normativity and embodiment through work by Canadian and international artists who use the body as a medium.

The artists critically inquire and experiment with the shape and forms of bodies, proving that, within the context of both the exhibition and the field of athleticism itself, the body is unfixed and indeterminate. The exhibition also makes important connections between the language of complex embodiment and the language of sports, given that many of the issues relating to endurance, physical limits, failure, pathos, and the human psyche, inform both these fields. It is within the confluence of these two worlds, sometimes playful, sometimes reflective, that we can radically expand our ideas of the corporeal apparatus as a whole. The works span across various media, including film and video installation, sculptures, framed photographs, drawings, paintings and several performances. The exhibition aims to emphasize how visitors might engage with this work across multi-disciplinary, multi-modal platforms. Just like the Pan Am and Parapan Am Games itself, this project offers up the artists’ work to the audience through a wider fulcrum of knowing the contours of our flesh.

Doris McCarthy Gallery

The artists presented at the Doris McCarthy Gallery examine the role of prosthetic apparatuses and how they may be substitutes or even augmentations of and for corporeal experience. These “things” have evolved beyond the merely functional and take on aesthetic, poetic and metaphorical qualities. Consideration will go beyond artificial devices and will extend to the territory of the communal, where additional bodies may enrich and strengthen the abilities of the individual.

Artists: Katherine Araniello, Ingrid Bachmann, Mowry Baden, Louise Bourgeois, Lisa Bufano & Jason Tschantré, Arseli Dokumaci, Sara Hendren, Darrin Martin, Carmen Papalia

Justina M. Barnicke Gallery/University of Toronto Art Centre

The artists presented in the Justina M. Barnicke Gallery/University of Toronto Art Centre explore the psychological and experiential dimensions of physical performance. These artists share an interest in multiple levels of difference and its social constructions in the larger culture. Ranging from the playful to the subversive, these multi-sensorial works create a dynamic framework with which to reconsider notions of “nature,” “normal,” “form” and “behavior.”

Artists: Mowry Baden, Raphaëlle de Groot, Helen Dowling, Lindsay Fisher, Erin Gee, Ann Hamilton, Wendy Jacob, Martin Kersels, Noëmi Lakmaier, Tim Lee, Bruce Nauman, Catherine Richards, Stelarc, Aaron Williamson, Alexa Wright and Artur Zmijewski

About the Curator

Amanda Cachia is an independent curator from Sydney, Australia and is currently completing her PhD in Art History, Theory & Criticism at the University of California, San Diego. Her dissertation will focus on the intersection of disability and contemporary art. Cachia completed her second Masters degree in Visual & Critical Studies at the California College of the Arts (CCA) in San Francisco in spring, 2012, and received her first Masters in Creative Curating from Goldsmiths College, University of London in 2001. She held the position Director/Curator of the Dunlop Art Gallery in Regina, Saskatchewan, Canada from 2007-2010, and has curated approximately 30 exhibitions over the last ten years in various cities across the USA, England, Australia and Canada. Her writing has been published in numerous exhibition catalogues, Canadian Art, Art Monthly Australia, and peer-reviewed academic journals such as Canadian Journal of Disability Studies, and Disability Studies Quarterly. She has lectured and participated in numerous international and national conferences and related events within the USA, Canada, Australia and Europe, and has served as a panelist for the National Endowment for the Arts (NEA) Art Works grant. Cachia is a dwarf activist and has been the Chair of the Dwarf Artists Coalition for the Little People of America (LPA) since 2007. She also serves on the College Art Association’s (CAA) Committee on Diversity Practices (2014-2017).

This program is supported in part by the Department of Canadian heritage through the Canadian Museums Association and its delivery of the Young Canada Works program. Additional support for the Performance Series provided by IGNITE. With thanks to the Equity and Diversity in the Arts, located within the Department of Arts, Culture and Media, and the Office of the Vice President and Principal, UTSC.