David Bate, John Ide, Danica Jojich, Barrie Jones, Gwen MacGregor, Brian Scott, Cynthia Short, Helen Underwood.

26 May 1986 - 7 June 1986
Opening Reception 26 May 1986 8pm

Off site:


Mercer Union is sponsoring a two part satellite project of work by eight local artists. During May 26th to June 21st, art will literally and figuratively be put on the street using the venue of five Queen Street West storefronts. By using a commercial location, the artists intend to actively involve and challenge a broadly based viewing audience. The work in the first half of the exhibition entitled PROJECTIONS, uses photographic and video images to make direct and indirect reference to their commercial counterparts. In the second half, DIMENSIONS, sculpture and installation work evokes references to product oriented display windows. Initial similarities between the form of the work, its references and location give way to a realization of its contradictory content. A resulting sense of tension and conflict is felt, encouraging a questioning of our expectations in viewing art in an obvious consumer setting.

PROJECTIONS will take place evenings from May 26th to June 7th.

Second Wave 968 Queen Street West

David Bate‘s work uses both slides and film projected onto the storefront window at night. Objective images of people and buildings in the neighbourhood will be juxtaposed with the artificial scenarios of human interaction and relationships which are filmed in a contrived soap-opera format. Moments of similarities and conflicts will be created by the juxtaposition of the objective and non-objective images. This work explores the ambiguity as to which of the images are ”real”.

Squeeze Club 817 Queen Street West

John Ide‘s I’ve Been To Chicago is a series of slides rear projected directly onto the window surface at night. The slides are appropriated commercial magazine images that have been juxtaposed in collage format and rephotographed. In collaging the photos, the images react to one another creating new meaning and tension not intended by the original images. Projecting them onto the street enhances the tension and creates a new ambiguity as to their intent.

Dufflets 787 Queen Street West

Barrie JonesPacific Salmon Series: Fall, Winter, Spring, Summer consists of four cibachrome images in fluorescent light boxec that will be stacked in the window forming an illuminated surface 64″x84″ projecting onto the street. Each image is of a staged real-time event, one for each season, which together make up a totem of the Vancouver city-scape. The images contrast the form and familiarity of advertising display signs with the mystery and evocative power of dislocated images and events.

Digs 456 Queen Street West

Helen Underwood‘s work uses the most “non-commercial” look in the creation of the images. A video installation is used to explore the relationship between video images and the recreation of memory. This is a common element of commercial T.V. Unlike its commercial counterpart, however, which usually recreates a memory in a narrative form, this work fragments, manipulates and transforms time and space the way our memory does.

Digs 456 Queen Street West

Danica Jojich‘s piece is based on an Italian 14th century story. In trying to explain her life to her son, a woman uses the metaphor of a window with curtains of gold. Gradually the curtain is snipped away until there is nothing left. Danica will use ceramic sculpture combined with other materials to recreate the story. An actual curtain will be part of the installation and will be gradually snipped away over the two weeks.

Dufflets 787 Queen Street West

Gwen MacGregor‘s mixed media installation uses two dimensional drawing to explore the symbolic implications and possibilities of gesture. The interaction of figure and object conjures up references to mannequins that display products in store windows. Unlike commercial store window scenes, however, which try to imitate real life to advertise their products, this scene is a physical manifestation of a subconscious state.

Second Wave 968 Queen Street West

Brian Scott‘s Fisherman and the Flycatcher is a mixed media installation that features the stage appearance, on animated film, of Fisherman and Flycatcher singing their new release “Warmspell, Weatherspots”. This silent pedestrian peep show with subtitles, set in a music hall, is augmented by a revealing view into the miniaturized bedsit/dressing room of the singers and their neighbour’s apartment upstairs.

Rivoli 334 Queen Street West

The depictation of an ideal state or paradise is commonly used in store windows. The buying of goods is equated with achieving this state. Cynthia Short feels that, in reality, the desire for paradise comes from a longing for freedom from conflict, suffering and deprivation. Her installation explores the idea of paradise lost through symbolic expression.

Pages Bookstore, 256 Queen West. 498-1447
Through June 29.

Cynthia Short at the, Rivoli, 334 Queen West; Danica Jojich at Digs, 456 Queen West; Gwen MacCregor at Dufflets, 787 Queen West; Brian Scott, 968 Queen West. 977-1423. Through June 21.

Jane Purdue

Quite a number of storefronts on Queen West offer more than just merchandise displays. These days Pages Bookstore at Queen and John, for example, regularly exhibits artists’ projects and visual commentary on current issues. Proprietor Marc Glassman invited Paul Collins to use the window space in conjunction with Collins’ new show at Garnett Press which opens June 14. Originally from Toronto, Collins has lived and painted in Paris for the past few years. He is here this month specifically to mount these two exhibitions. At Pages through June 29 will be a diptych painting called The Vicious Circles of the Weak Reader, which serves as a “visual metaphor and philosophical reading of text, history and certain situations in painting.” Later this summer, the popular design group Reactor, which includes Rene Zamic and Barbara Klunder, will take over the window display.

Continuing further west along Queen, curator/artist Gwen MaGregor has assembled an ambitious series of artists’ installations in the windows at the Rivoli, Digs clothing store, Dufflets Pastries and Second Wave, a new bookstore specializing in publications from the far east. Part one, Projections, consists of video and photography–on view for the past few weeks. Dimensions (part two) with windows by Brian Scott, Danica Jojich, Cynthia Scott and MacGregor, has been installed to “evoke references to product oriented display windows.” MacGregor hopes that the “initial similarities between the form of the works and references will result in a sense of tension and conflict, thus encouraging a questioning of our expectations in viewing art in an obvious consumer setting.”

At Digs, Jojich’s video and sculpture recreates an Italian 14th century story about a mother explaining her life to her son. The window and a gold curtain will serve as metaphors and gradually the gold fabric will be snipped away as the story unfolds. An actual peepshow, including an animated film complete with subtitles will be installed in the window at Second Wave. Scott’s weird and wonderful Fisherman and the Flycatcher promises to be worth the visit, as do all the other imaginative storefront projects along Queen West.