Artists: Lori Blondeau & Adrian Stimson
January 16 at 7PM
University of Lethbridge Art Gallery – Main Gallery (W600)
Art Now Speaker Series
January 17 at 12PM – Recital Hall (W570)
January 17, 2 – 4PM – Room W857
Racism is embedded in our language and assumptions, part of what we are taught in school, at home, and on the job, and integral to pop culture and advertising. It is pervasive and yet, when confronted with this reality, white people become uncomfortable and defensive. For example, there was a collective gasp when I told my Introduction to Museum Studies class that performance artists Lori Blondeau and Adrian Stimson would be holding a competition in the University of Lethbridge Art Gallery to find Canada’s most racist person.
Museums in Canada have undergone a shift in the last 20 years in terms of how Aboriginal objects are included and presented and in terms of who gets to have a voice in contextualizing them. As well, there has been a surge in the representation of a diverse range of Aboriginal artists from coast to coast to coast. However, racism persists and so do the difficulties in addressing the issues involved. Rather than delicately sidling up on tippy-toes, Blondeau and Stimson will address racism head on and clearly state what nice, polite Canadians don’t like to admit: there are plenty of contenders for Canada’s most racist person or institution. This won’t change unless individuals who oppose racism are willing to take action and speak up in a way that engages people and encourages them to participate. Lecturing or confronting people is not an effective method of persuasion, making them shy away from this contentious subject. Instead, Blondeau and Stimson, known for combining humour and playful theatrics with serious subject matter, draw on the glitz and fun of a pop singing competition combined with the gravitas of a court of law to invite people in Lethbridge to participate in the selection of Canada’s top racist as part of the Canadian Idol No More event.
Director/Curator, U of L Art Gallery
The performance is for one night only, Thursday January 16, 2014 at 7 pm in the Main Gallery (W600). Admission is free and all are welcome.
Friday January 17, 2014, Blondeau and Stimson will give a public lecture at noon in the recital hall (level 5, Centre for the Arts) and lead an informal discussion at 2 pm in the Art Ed studio (W857 – level 8 of the Centre for the Arts). Both events are open to all and admission is free.
Start Date & Time: January 16, 2014 7:00pm
End Date & Time: January 17, 2014 4:00pm
Venue: U of L Main Gallery