The Shifting Plane of Performance

Entracte, Ali El-Darsa, Per­for­mance, 2012

Thurs­day April 26th 6 pm Per­for­mance by Ali El-Darsa
Fri­day April 27th 5:30 to 9:30 pm Symposium
Sat­ur­day April 28th 1 to 3 pm Dis­cus­sion forum mod­er­at­ed by Matthew Goulish

The Shift­ing Plane of Per­for­mance was a series of per­for­mances, sym­posia, and a dis­cus­sion forum that exam­ined con­tem­po­rary devel­op­ments and direc­tions of per­for­mance art. Over the three-day event, artists and researchers explored the rela­tion­ship between per­for­mance art, social prac­tice and rela­tion­al aes­thet­ics, and how per­for­mance func­tions beyond North Amer­i­can or Euro­pean models.

In part­ner­ship with the South Asian Visu­al Arts Cen­tre, Toron­to, the three-day plat­form opened with a per­for­mance by the Mon­tre­al-based artist, Ali El-Darsa on Thurs­day April 26th.

An inten­sive sym­po­sium on per­for­mance art was held on Fri­day April 27th fol­lowed by a mod­er­at­ed dis­cus­sion forum on Sat­ur­day April 28th. The sym­po­sium and forum were fund­ed through Diane Bor­sato and Stephanie Springgay’s Social Sci­ences and Human­i­ties Research Coun­cil (SSHRC) grant, “The Insti­tute of Walk­ing: Research and Cre­ation in Rela­tion­al and Inter­ven­tion­ist Arts Prac­tices,” co-fund­ed by the Ontario Arts Coun­cil, pro­duced in col­lab­o­ra­tion with the Justi­na M. Bar­nicke Gallery, Hart House, Uni­ver­si­ty of Toron­to, and co-curat­ed by Swap­naa Tamhane.


Thurs­day April 26th 6 pm
Per­for­mance by Ali El-Darsa Entr’acte
Loca­tion: Debates Room, Hart House
Pro­duced in col­lab­o­ra­tion with SAVAC

Fri­day April 27th 5:30 to 9:30 pm
Loca­tion: Hart House East Com­mon Room

Pan­el 1: Posi­tions of Per­for­mance Today”: Christof Migone, Cura­tor, Black­wood Gallery, Uni­ver­si­ty of Toron­to, Mis­sis­sauga; Antawan Byrd, Doc­tor­al Stu­dent, Art His­to­ry, North­west­ern Uni­ver­si­ty, Chica­go; Swap­naa Tamhane, Artist/Curator, Toron­to; Ambereen Sid­diqui, South Asian Visu­al Arts Cen­tre, Toronto.

Pan­el 2: Per­for­mance not mere­ly as per­for­mance”: Dar­ren O’Donnell, Artis­tic Direc­tor, The Mam­malian Div­ing Reflex, Toron­to and the Toron­to­ni­ans; Ves­na Krstich, Cura­tor, Toronto/London; Wan­da Nanibush, Exec­u­tive Direc­tor, ANDPVA, Toron­to; Jime­na Ortuzar, PhD stu­dent, The Uni­ver­si­ty of Toron­to; Amish Mor­rell, Edi­tor C Magazine.

Pan­el 3: Insti­tu­tion vs. Pub­lic Space”: Stephanie Spring­gay, Assis­tant Pro­fes­sor, OISE, The Uni­ver­si­ty of Toron­to; Emelie Chhangur, Assis­tant Direc­tor, Art Gallery of York Uni­ver­si­ty; Jess Dobkin, Artist/Curator, Toron­to; Jorge Lucero, Assis­tant Pro­fes­sor, Uni­ver­si­ty of Illi­nois, Urbana-Cham­paign, Kim Simon, Cura­tor, TPW.

Sat­ur­day April 28th 1 to 3 pm
Mod­er­a­tor: Matthew Goul­ish, Adjunct Full Pro­fes­sor, The School of the Art Insti­tute of Chicago.


Pan­el Pre­sen­ta­tion Titles and Abstracts

Panel 1: Positions of Performance Today

Christof Migone
Pneu­mat­ics: from form­less to form and back again

Per­for­mance is a con­duit, an in-between, a con­ver­sant. Ins, outs, throughput—in and of itself, per­for­mance is noth­ing. Per­for­mance’s noth­ing sta­tus, its noth­ing­ness, should not raise any ire, con­cern, or anx­i­ety, it’s a rich and swarm­ing petri dish. It is a nexus of research which mix­es plans with flux­es with chances with obses­sions. It cir­cles round and around. It con­fus­es the com­plex with the sim­ple. It unknows givens, and dis­cov­ers knowns anew. Every time, it takes a new breath with the same old lungs. It is weary of morals and exi­gen­cies. It breathes best when the air flows unfet­tered. “Ungovern­able shoots play out of it”, as Walt Whit­man would say, “the response like­wise ungovern­able.” The propo­si­tion of this pre­sen­ta­tion is that an unre­strict­ed pulse is the imper­a­tive neces­si­ty for the flour­ish­ing of the ungovern­able per­for­mance.

Antawan Byrd
Being There/Being Seen: Local­i­ty and After­life in Jelili Atiku’s Agbo Rago

The emerg­ing cos­mopoli­tan cities defin­ing the West-African region are char­ac­ter­ized by a fast-faced, hus­tle and bustling dynam­ic, so much that dai­ly life in such spaces has be char­ac­ter­ized as a “per­for­mance” in its own right. This com­bined with the real­i­ty that, in West-Africa, per­for­mance as a genre of con­tem­po­rary art is still in its infan­cy invites sev­er­al crit­i­cal ques­tions about the nature and pos­si­bil­i­ties of per­for­mance: What are the con­di­tions that gov­ern the trans­lata­bil­i­ty of per­for­mance as a “glob­al” genre of con­tem­po­rary art in non-West­ern regions? How can we define per­for­mance in cul­tures where street inter­ven­tions are close­ly linked to mas­quer­ade and oth­er cul­tur­al tra­di­tions? What are the con­di­tions that gov­ern acts of wit­ness­ing? And how does this relate to the after­life of per­for­mance prac­tices vis-a-vis pub­li­ca­tions and archives? This pre­sen­ta­tion seeks to engage these ques­tions by explor­ing the per­for­mance prac­tices of the Lagos-based, Niger­ian artist Jelili Atiku, tak­ing his 2009 per­for­mance Agbo Rago as a case study.

Swap­naa Tamhane
What does a name mean and who does the naming?

The India that has hap­pened in the last 50 years, in the last 2 years, or in the last 3 months, is in a per­pet­u­al­ly evolv­ing state that is (pos­si­bly) con­stant­ly try­ing to under­stand itself. Every­thing from reli­gious cel­e­bra­tions to street life to high soci­ety lun­cheons, is a per­for­mance and the ‘per­for­ma­tive’ is in a state of becom­ing. Con­tem­po­rary artists from India eas­i­ly adopt estab­lished West­ern art move­ments; ‘Per­for­mance Art’, while still nascent, reach­es its pasts and its futures and ulti­mate­ly, this pop­u­lar name can not sat­is­fy these reach­es. What can this medi­um be named instead of “Per­for­mance Art”? And will it be a cura­tor, art his­to­ri­an, or artist who take the own­er­ship of nam­ing their own move­ment and writ­ing its his­to­ry and discourse?

Mod­er­a­tor: Ambereen Siddiqui

Panel 2: Performance not merely as performance

The Toron­to­ni­ans
“How to be a down­town teen” 

The Toron­to­ni­ans are a group of 14- 16 year olds from Park­dale, Toron­to and form part of the Youth Wing of the research-art-ate­lier Mam­malian Div­ing Reflex. The youth have pro­duced a video titled “How to be a Brown Teen;” inter­ro­gat­ed talk-show style a group of young art hip­sters; filmed a teen sex­u­al health video; lead a series of night walks with teenagers in Cape Bre­ton, Nova Sco­tia, and host a month­ly Dare Night in Toron­to hip gallery dis­trict. The youth are also involved in a year-long men­tor­ship res­i­den­cy at the Glad­stone Hotel, where they are learn­ing the ropes of event pro­duc­tion: curat­ing, bud­get­ing, mar­ket­ing, pro­duc­tion man­age­ment and hos­pi­tal­i­ty. On anoth­er lev­el, The Toron­to­ni­ans ini­tia­tive is a suc­ces­sion plan: they will even­tu­al­ly move into artis­tic and admin­is­tra­tive lead­er­ship roles and will have full con­trol of the com­pa­ny in 10–15 years, as they move into their 30s. Their pre­sen­ta­tion will high­light some of their per­for­mance prac­tices and engage in ques­tions about friend­ship, men­tor­ship, and collaboration.

Ves­na Krstich
Action teach­ing and oth­er ‘hap­pen­ing’ classrooms

What is the dif­fer­ence between a set of instruc­tions per­formed by an artist or audi­ence and a les­son devised by a teacher for a group of art stu­dents? Before Beuys prophet­i­cal­ly claimed that ‘teach­ing is my great­est work of art” in 1969 and before David Askevold’s infa­mous Project Class of 1971, artist ped­a­gogs of the 60s such as Roy Ascott, John Lath­am, Allan Kaprow, and Peter Kar­dia were already re-think­ing the inter­re­la­tion between instruc­tion and action, process and prod­uct, often with­in the frame­work of high­er edu­ca­tion. I plan to dis­cuss how their rad­i­cal instruc­tion­al strate­gies gave rise to group exper­i­ments, games, ran­dom events as well as objects. How might we con­ceive of these ges­tures as ‘action’ teach­ing and what sem­blance might they bear to hap­pen­ings and fluxus or oth­er con­cep­tu­al prac­tices? Where is the line between instruc­tion and art form?

Wan­da Nanibush 
Per­form­ing Indi­an: From Cap­tiv­i­ty to Cabaret

A short his­to­ry of the impact of per­form­ing “Indi­an” by Indige­nous artists since con­tact on con­tem­po­rary Indige­nous per­for­mance art. Artists such as Robert Houle, Rebec­ca Bel­more, Adri­an Stim­son, Lori Blondeau and Bear Wit­ness mine this per­for­mance art his­to­ry for their own prac­tice as well as con­tin­u­ing its tra­di­tion of artis­tic cos­mopoli­tanism. Agency with­in performance,protesting colo­nial con­for­mi­ty and cap­tiv­i­ty, re-enact­ment, remix­ing and memo­ri­al­iza­tion are the artis­tic strate­gies dis­cussed. All works dis­cussed are in some way embod­ied with­out a present live body.

Jime­na Ortuzar
The Labour of Love

Locat­ing the role of the female for­eign domes­tic work­er at the inter­sec­tions of affect, labour and biopo­lit­i­cal oth­er­ing, and in light of Judith Butler’s “per­for­ma­tive con­tra­dic­tion” in Who Sings the Nation-State, I exam­ine the singing of lul­la­bies as acts of affec­tive labour that con­nect mul­ti­ple expres­sions of inti­ma­cy, lan­guage and cul­tur­al mem­o­ry. Can the cross-cul­tur­al prac­tice of lul­la­by-singing func­tion as a pos­si­ble means of com­ing to terms with the spa­tial and tem­po­ral dis­lo­ca­tions inher­ent in migrant work? I explore this ques­tion while tak­ing into account the insta­bil­i­ty of the labour­ing body of the migrant woman and its pro­duc­tion of affect.

Mod­er­a­tor: Amish Morrell

Panel 3: Institution vs. Public Space

Stephanie Spring­gay
Per­for­mance, publics, and art education

Increas­ing­ly con­tem­po­rary art has been marked by a turn to edu­ca­tion through the adop­tion of ped­a­gog­i­cal and research meth­ods, and a focus on knowl­edge pro­duc­tion and learn­ing. The esca­la­tion of dis­cur­sive events with­in con­tem­po­rary art, the cura­to­ri­al­iza­tion of edu­ca­tion, and edu­ca­tion as a form of art mak­ing mark an urgency to prob­lema­tize, inter­ro­gate, and exam­ine crit­i­cal cul­tur­al prac­tices against the polit­i­cal rhetoric of cul­ture-as-ser­vice, the cre­ative econ­o­my, and the stan­dard­iza­tion of edu­ca­tion­al out­comes. This pre­sen­ta­tion works trans­ver­sal­ly across insti­tu­tions, dis­ci­plines, notions of ‘publics,’ and artis­tic strate­gies in an attempt to address what our efforts in the arts in rela­tion to edu­ca­tion make pos­si­ble and for whom. How are con­tem­po­rary artists engag­ing with edu­ca­tion­al for­mats, con­cepts, and motifs as spaces for the devel­op­ment of new crit­i­cal prac­tices, and how might we crit­i­cal­ly inter­ro­gate, exam­ine, and trou­ble such crit­i­cal art prac­tices when they are locat­ed in col­lab­o­ra­tion with schools and communities?

Emelie Chhangur
Recom­bi­nant Prac­tices and Insti­tu­tion­al Interruptions

In this pre­sen­ta­tion Chhangur dis­cuss­es the role of per­for­ma­tive cura­to­r­i­al prac­tices in the cre­ative trans­for­ma­tion of the insti­tu­tion­al space of the con­tem­po­rary art gallery. Using the Art Gallery of York Uni­ver­si­ty (AGYU) as the start­ing point, and dis­cussing two recent col­lab­o­ra­tive and par­tic­i­pa­to­ry per­for­mance projects The Cen­tre for Inci­den­tal Activisms (CIA) and Hum­ber­to Vélez’s The Awak­en­ing, she will out­line how the gallery uses the prin­ci­ples and strate­gies of con­tem­po­rary art (i.e. col­lab­o­ra­tion and social­ly engaged par­tic­i­pa­to­ry method­olo­gies) to repo­si­tion itself as an agent of crit­i­cal engage­ment not just a site of viewing.

Jess Dobkin
Work­ing Inside and Out­side of My Bubble

Dobkin’s pre­sen­ta­tion will address her expe­ri­ence and prac­tice work­ing with­in and out­side of insti­tu­tion­al struc­tures, and also address the dimin­ish­ing of this dichoto­my. She will dis­cuss resources, net­works and skills used in var­i­ous projects and how the priv­i­leges and con­fines of work­ing within/without insti­tu­tion­al sup­port impacts the con­cep­tu­al­iza­tion and real­iza­tion of performances.

Jorge Lucero
We still don’t know how much less ‘noth­ing’ can be.

The poignant 1968 propo­si­tion of Lucy Lip­pard and John Chan­dler that “we still don’t know how much less ‘noth­ing’ can be” is a chal­lenge that flies in the material/archival face of what it means to make a moment of Live, par­tic­i­pa­to­ry, or rela­tion­al art. How many par­tic­i­pants, audi­ence mem­bers, or instances of doc­u­men­ta­tion does a con­cep­tu­al work need to have in order for it to mark its exis­tence and con­se­quent val­i­da­tion as a work of art? In a short recount­ing of two works per­formed with­in a uni­ver­si­ty office, Jorge Lucero, exam­ines what it means to make a work that doesn’t get doc­u­ment­ed, is expe­ri­enced only by a hand­ful of peo­ple, and pret­ty much appears to have made zero impact.

Mod­er­a­tor: Kim Simon


Christof Migone is an artist, cura­tor and writer. His work and research delves into lan­guage, voice, bod­ies, per­for­mance, inti­ma­cy, com­plic­i­ty, endurance. His writ­ings have been pub­lished in Aur­al Cul­tures, S:ON, Exper­i­men­tal Sound & Radio, Music­works, Radio Rethink, Semiotext(e), Ange­la­ki, Esse, Inter, Per­for­mance Research, etc. He obtained an MFA from NSCAD in 1996 and a PhD from the Depart­ment of Per­for­mance Stud­ies at the Tisch School of the Arts of New York Uni­ver­si­ty in 2007. His book Son­ic Somat­ic: Per­for­mances of the Unsound Body will be com­ing out this Spring from Errant Bod­ies Press in Berlin. He cur­rent­ly lives in Toron­to and is a Lec­tur­er in the Depart­ment of Visu­al Stud­ies at the Uni­ver­si­ty of Toron­to Mis­sis­sauga and the Director/Curator of the Black­wood Gallery.

Antawan I. Byrd (b. 1986) is cur­rent­ly a PhD stu­dent in Art His­to­ry at North­west­ern Uni­ver­si­ty (US), focus­ing on Mod­ern and Con­tem­po­rary art of Africa and the African Dias­po­ra. In 2009-10 he was a US Ful­bright fel­low based at the Cen­tre for Con­tem­po­rary, Lagos, where he was also a cura­to­r­i­al assis­tant from 2009–2011. While based at CCA, Byrd co-orga­nized projects such as Iden­ti­ty: An Imag­i­na­tion (2009), the first pub­li­ca­tion on video art in Nige­ria and most recent­ly All We Ever Want­ed (2011), a group exhi­bi­tion fea­tur­ing six Niger­ian women artists. Byrd was recent­ly cura­to­r­i­al assis­tant for Moments of Beau­ty, a ret­ro­spec­tive exhi­bi­tion on the work of the Niger­ian pho­tog­ra­ph­er, J.D. ‘Okhai Ojeikere at the Muse­um of Con­tem­po­rary Art, Kias­ma, Helsin­ki, 2011. He has held research fel­low­ships and intern­ships with the Philadel­phia Muse­um of Art, the Wal­ters Art Gallery (Bal­ti­more) and at HIAP-Frame, Helsin­ki, and has par­tic­i­pat­ed in a vari­ety of projects in cities rang­ing from Shar­jah, Cairo, Bamako, Johan­nes­burg and Coto­nou. He cur­rent­ly lives in Chicago.

Swap­naa Tamhane is an artist and cura­tor cur­rent­ly work­ing towards an exhi­bi­tion at Muse­um Abteiberg, Mönchenglad­bach, cen­tred around her research on artist, Rum­mana Hus­sain (1952–99). Tamhane was a Project Edi­tor at Phaidon Press, Lon­don, (2002–06) work­ing with con­tem­po­rary art and design titles, and fol­low­ing was Assis­tant Cura­tor at The Pow­er Plant, Toron­to (2007–08). She has been exhibit­ing since 2009 in Del­hi (Gal­ley Sev­en Art), Ban­ga­lore (KHOJ @1 Shan­thi Road Res­i­den­cy) and Toron­to (Launch Projects, Con­tact Pho­tog­ra­phy Festival).

Ambereen Sid­diqui is the Exec­u­tive Direc­tor at SAVAC (South Asian Visu­al Arts Cen­tre). Born in Toron­to, and raised in Karachi, she returned to attend the joint Art and Art His­to­ry pro­gram at the Uni­ver­si­ty of Toron­to and Sheri­dan Col­lege. As an artist she works across media to include, video, ani­ma­tion and pho­tog­ra­phy. She received her MFA from the Rhode Island School of Design this past June, and her work was shown most recent­ly at Plea­sure Dome, Nia­gara Arts Cen­tre and Muse­um Lon­don. She is cur­rent­ly work­ing on a range of pro­grams for SAVAC, includ­ing exhi­bi­tions, screen­ings, pro­fes­sion­al devel­op­ment work­shops and com­mu­ni­ty outreach.


The Toron­to­ni­ans are a Toron­to-wide art col­lec­tive, soon to include the whole world. We cre­ate per­for­mance, inter­view shop own­ers, give lec­tures, make videos, dance on the street, start fights with drunk guys, take pho­tographs, draw penis­es, check cell phones, sing songs, play cel­los, draw bun­nies, take the TTC, ride bikes and do vol­un­teer hours.

Ves­na Krstich is an art crit­ic and inde­pen­dent cura­tor, who teach­es at Upper Cana­da Col­lege in Toron­to. She holds a BA in Art His­to­ry from York Uni­ver­si­ty and a MA in Art His­to­ry from the Cour­tauld Insti­tute of Art in Lon­don, where she spe­cial­ized in Con­tem­po­rary Art. Her research focus­es on the inter­sec­tion between par­tic­i­pa­to­ry art and ped­a­gogy from 1960 onwards. She has pub­lished in Para­chute, C Mag­a­zine, Art Papers, Cana­di­an Art and Cura­tor: The Muse­um Jour­nal, among oth­ers. She is cur­rent­ly based in Lon­don, Eng­land where she is con­duct­ing research on British Con­cep­tu­al artist Stephen Willats as part of research grant from the Cana­da Coun­cil for the Arts.

Wan­da Nanibush is an Anish­nawbe-kwe cura­tor, writer, and media artist. She is fin­ish­ing her Mas­ters at Uni­ver­si­ty of Toron­to and is the Exec­u­tive Direc­tor of the Asso­ci­a­tion for Native Devel­op­ment in the Per­form­ing & Visu­al Arts. As a cura­tor, her work has large­ly con­cen­trat­ed on re-con­tex­tu­al­iz­ing Indige­nous time-based media and per­for­mance art to exam­ine the under­ly­ing philo­soph­i­cal com­plex­i­ty of the work, as well as rethink­ing how cul­ture and iden­ti­ty are framed by con­tem­po­rary artis­tic dis­cours­es. Nanibush has pub­lished in FUSE mag­a­zine, Lit­er­ary Review of Cana­da and in the book: This is an Hon­our Song: Twen­ty Years Since the Blockades.

Jime­na Ortuzar is a doc­tor­al stu­dent at the Cen­tre for Dra­ma, The­atre and Per­for­mance Stud­ies and the Cen­tre for Dias­po­ra and Transna­tion­al Stud­ies at the Uni­ver­si­ty of Toron­to. She received her MA from Tisch School of the Arts/NYU where she earned the Leigh George Odom Memo­r­i­al Award for Dis­tin­guished Mas­ters Stu­dent. She has col­lab­o­rat­ed in var­i­ous the­atre, per­for­mance and video art projects in Toron­to and New York City and her short film Pinochet’s Tri­al has cir­cu­lat­ed numer­ous fes­ti­vals in Toron­to, San Fran­cis­co and Brus­sels, Bel­gium. Her pro­fes­sion­al expe­ri­ence includes labour rela­tions and human rights for the Cana­di­an Union of Pub­lic Employees.

Amish Mor­rell is Edi­tor of C Mag­a­zine, a quar­ter­ly jour­nal on con­tem­po­rary inter­na­tion­al art, and Spe­cial Lec­tur­er in Visu­al Stud­ies at the Uni­ver­si­ty of Toron­to Mis­sis­sauga. He has writ­ten for pub­li­ca­tions includ­ing Art Papers, Ciel Vari­able, Fuse Mag­a­zine, His­to­ry of Pho­tog­ra­phy and Pre­fix Pho­to. His cura­to­r­i­al projects include The Fron­tier is Here, an exhi­bi­tion of works by con­tem­po­rary Cana­di­an and inter­na­tion­al artists that explore land­scape and iden­ti­ty, and Night­walks with Teenagers, a col­lab­o­ra­tive project to pro­duce new art­works that inves­ti­gate walk­ing as aes­thet­ic prac­tice, pro­duced by Mam­malian Div­ing Reflex. He recent­ly edit­ed The Anti-Cat­a­logue (The Mod­el, 2010), a book on con­tem­po­rary artists col­lec­tives, and is pub­lished in Byprod­uct: on the excess of embed­ded art prac­tices (YYZ­Books, 2010), edit­ed by Marisa Jahn.

Stephanie Spring­gay is an Assis­tant Pro­fes­sor in the Depart­ment of Cur­ricu­lum, Teach­ing, and Learn­ing at the Ontario Insti­tute for Stud­ies in Edu­ca­tion at the Uni­ver­si­ty of Toron­to, where she teach­es cours­es focused on arts edu­ca­tion, cul­tur­al stud­ies, and cur­ricu­lum stud­ies. Her research focus­es on how cul­tur­al pro­duc­tion (films, per­for­mances, con­tem­po­rary art prac­tices) cre­ate ped­a­gog­i­cal spaces that facil­i­tate, invite, and demand “unlearn­ing” as a site of cre­ative resis­tance. Cur­rent­ly she is work­ing on two inter­re­lat­ed Social Sci­ences and Human­i­ties Research Coun­cil of Cana­da (SSHRC) grants on rela­tion­al and inter­ven­tion­ist art prac­tices, and on the ‘ped­a­gog­i­cal turn’ in con­tem­po­rary art and art edu­ca­tion. She has pub­lished wide­ly in aca­d­e­m­ic jour­nals and is the co-edi­tor of the book M/othering a Bod­ied Cur­ricu­lum: The­o­ries and Prac­tices of Rela­tion­al Teach­ing Uni­ver­si­ty of Toron­to Press, with Debra Freed­man; is the co-edi­tor of Cur­ricu­lum and the Cul­tur­al Body, Peter Lang with Debra Freed­man; and the author of Body Knowl­edge and Cur­ricu­lum: Ped­a­go­gies of Touch in Youth and Visu­al Cul­ture, Peter Lang.

Emelie Chhangur is an artist and award win­ning cura­tor and writer based in Toron­to, where she works as the Assis­tant Director/Curator of the AGYU. Over the past decade, she has devel­oped an exper­i­men­tal cura­to­r­i­al prac­tice in col­lab­o­ra­tion with artists. Recent projects (2011) include The Awak­en­ing, a three-year mul­ti-faceted par­tic­i­pa­to­ry per­for­mance with Pana­man­ian artist Hum­ber­to Vélez and the Cen­tre for Inci­den­tal Activisms (CIA), a rad­i­cal propo­si­tion of gallery “in-reach,” where par­tic­i­pa­to­ry, activist, and research-based prac­tices were empha­sized over con­ven­tion­al meth­ods of exhi­bi­tion dis­play. Chhangur has pub­lished a num­ber of texts, which fol­low the prin­ci­ples and strate­gies of the artists she works with, most recent­ly (2011) the hybrid screen-play/cu­ra­to­r­i­al text Oliv­er Husain: Mech­a­nisms at Play, and the rela­tion­al text/diary Walk­ing into and along-side Diane Borsato’s Walk­ing Studio.

Jess Dobkin’s per­for­mances, artist’s talks and work­shops are pre­sent­ed inter­na­tion­al­ly at muse­ums, gal­leries, the­atres, uni­ver­si­ties and in pub­lic spaces. She cre­ates inno­v­a­tive live and video solo per­for­mances, as well as mul­ti­ple artist pro­duc­tions. Jess has pre­sent­ed as a Vis­it­ing Artist at numer­ous uni­ver­si­ties and taught as a Ses­sion­al Lec­tur­er at the Uni­ver­si­ty of Toron­to and OCAD Uni­ver­si­ty. Cur­rent­ly she is Guest Cura­tor of Har­bourfront Centre’s 2011–2012 HATCH sea­son and a Fel­low at the Mark S. Bon­ham Cen­tre for Sex­u­al Diver­si­ty Stud­ies at the Uni­ver­si­ty of Toron­to. She is also a col­lec­tive mem­ber of 7a*11d, which pro­duces a bien­ni­al inter­na­tion­al per­for­mance art fes­ti­val. For more about her work vis­it:

Jorge Lucero is an artist who’s teach­ing prac­tice is his cre­ative prac­tice. He is cur­rent­ly an Assis­tant Pro­fes­sor of Art Edu­ca­tion at The Uni­ver­si­ty of Illi­nois in Urbana-Cham­paign. Strong­ly iden­ti­fy­ing as a first gen­er­a­tion Mex­i­can-Amer­i­can who was born and raised in Chica­go, Jorge looks for­ward to how his per­pet­u­al­ly in-flux iden­ti­ty is rein­vent­ed dai­ly by the encoun­ters he has with oth­er indi­vid­u­als. Jorge’s cur­rent research is con­cerned with the inter­ac­tions between con­tem­po­rary art prac­tices that have a dis­tinct­ly ped­a­gog­i­cal char­ac­ter (such as per­for­mance, par­tic­i­pa­to­ry, and con­cep­tu­al art) and how those modes of oper­a­tion pro­pose alter­na­tive approach­es to learn­ing, rela­tion­ships, ethics, spir­i­tu­al­i­ty, gen­er­a­tiv­i­ty, and civic engage­ment. Jorge and Mari­bel Lucero co-con­struct a life with their four high­ly sen­si­tive and gen­er­ous chil­dren in Cham­paign, IL.

Kim Simon has been active as an arts writer and cura­tor for over 15 years, she is cur­rent­ly cura­tor at Gallery TPW in Toron­to. Found­ed in 1980 as a non-prof­it venue for pho­to­graph­ic prac­tices, TPW is com­mit­ted to a media-spe­cif­ic but expand­ed man­date, address­ing the vital role that images play in con­tem­po­rary cul­ture and explor­ing the exchange between pho­tog­ra­phy, new tech­nolo­gies and time-based media. With­in the con­text of TPW, for the last few years Simon’s par­tic­u­lar cura­to­r­i­al research inves­ti­gates an ethics of view­ing in rela­tion to the aes­thet­ics of trou­bling images, with­in the con­text of ped­a­gog­i­cal and jour­nal­is­tic turns in con­tem­po­rary art. Along­side exhi­bi­tions at TPW, Simon con­tin­ues to devel­op two extend­ed pro­grams, “You Had To Be There” — an event and per­for­mance series look­ing at the rela­tion between live­ness and images, and “This is Not a Blog” — an inti­mate series of dis­cus­sions on cul­ture. In addi­tion to TPW, Simon writes and curates inde­pen­dent­ly for oth­er insti­tu­tions. Recent work includes the pre­sen­ta­tion of a per­for­ma­tive, com­mu­ni­ty-based, pub­lic site work by Cana­di­an artist and activist Reena Katz, and pub­lish­ing on the work of Que­bec artists Diane Landry and Kar­ilee Fuglem. In 2006, Simon also curat­ed a sec­tion of the inau­gur­al Nuit Blanche Toron­to, a city-wide 12 hour pub­lic art event.

Matthew Goul­ish co-found­ed Goat Island in 1987, and Every house has a door in 2008. His 39 Microlec­tures – in prox­im­i­ty of per­for­mance was pub­lished by Rout­ledge in 2000, and Small Acts of Repair – Per­for­mance, Ecol­o­gy, and Goat Island, which he co-edit­ed with Stephen Bot­toms, in 2007. He was award­ed a Lan­nan Foun­da­tion Writ­ers Res­i­den­cy in 2004, and in 2007 he received an hon­orary Ph.D. from Dart­ing­ton Col­lege of Arts, Uni­ver­si­ty of Ply­mouth. Goul­ish teach­es in the MFA and BFA Writ­ing Pro­grams of the The School of the Art Insti­tute of Chicago