The Leona Drive Project
TheThe Public Access Collective will collaborate with L.O.T. : Experiments in Urban Research (Collective) to commission several artist projects for a site specific exhibition in a series of six vacant bungalows slated for demolition by HYATT HOMES, a developer in Willowdale, Ontario (in the Yonge and Finch area of Greater Toronto). The exhibition artists will be working in a variety of media: audio, cell phones with GPS, architectural installation, projection, photography, sculpture and performance for a period of two weeks, from Oct 22 - 31, 2009. Collective members Janine Marchessault (Public Access and LOT) and Michael Prokopow (L.O.T.) will work collaboratively with the artists to develop an exhibition specifically designed to engage with the architecture and spatial design of the houses typical modernist dwellings of the prosperous and decidedly homogenous decades of post World War II Canada and the large backyards.
While the curators anticipate several sub-themes emerging from the individual artists, the overall problematic for the exhibition is the remarkable shift from the suburbs of old to the suburbs of contemporary Canada, namely the neighborhoods and precincts of the multicultural, but nonetheless parsed state. As such, the project will interrogate what has been lost in terms of the older identities and utopias, domestic, regional and national, and the concomitant transformations around issues of gender, race, class and what was broadly proclaimed as the good life. Accordingly, the project will investigate recent developments in suburbia where new patterns of community and conscience operate. Interested in the new ecologies of place, citizenship, transposed tradition, lifestyle and home, Public Access and L.O.T. are concerned with the role of technology and the built environment (from sewage systems to cars) in the quotidian in everyday life (both public and private) of the citizen. The exhibition will host a symposium on the culture of suburbs that will include urban planners, artists and architects.