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Contemporary Art Gallery

555 Nelson Street
Vancouver, Canada
Admission always free

Today's hours
12 pm - 6 pm
24 Mar 20·7:00 PM


Erica Stocking: The Artist’s Studio Is Her Bedroom: a choreographed statement of autobiographical art making

Remote via conference call

An image of a stage set framed by theatre curtains with brown curtains in the background. On stage is a set of a bedroom containing a bed, carpets, a small table, a room divider, and lounge chair.

Erica Stocking, The Artist’s Studio: A real allegory summing up seven years of my artistic and moral life, 2014. Courtesy the artist.

Due to Erica Stocking’s play being canceled as a result of COVID-19, the artist has proposed an alternative way of connecting in this moment, presenting an open rehearsal of the play which will take place via an audio conference call and available for listeners to dial in.

The work is presented by Erica Stocking in collaboration with Kara Uzelman, Tabitha Osler, Sydney Hermant, Shyla Seller, Justine A. Chambers, Alexa Mardon, Alison Denham, Rianne Svelnis, Kaia Shukin, Daisy Thompson, Amber Barton, Tara Cheyenne Friedenberg, HaeAhn Kwon, Julie Morstad, Christy Nyiri, and the Contemporary Art Gallery.

The Artist’s Studio is Her Bedroom: A choreographic statement on autobiographical art making is a framework for exploring the contemporary condition of attention/distraction through an experience of motherhood. By evoking this particular experience as a form to be inhabited, Stocking explores how we can be both autonomous and non-autonomous subjects within a network. As an iterative process, the artwork is working, breathing, being, offering a space for collective inhabitation. In our intensified political and ecological moment, how do we be together amidst spatial and temporal distances?

Following the old avant-garde call for the collapsing of art and life often found within artistic practices at key moments in history, The Artist’s Studio Is Her Bedroom: A choreographed statement of autobiographical art-making responds to our intensified political and ecological moment by exploring the potential of art to offer both political and private relevance.

The play offers a framework to inhabit a grammar of motherhood which reflects a contemporary condition of oscillation between attention and distraction. Stocking proposes artwork as an organism that moves in the world, an organism to inhabit within the world, and an organism as a fiction to understand the world.

Inspiration for the costumes comes from WWI when the allies began to paint their ships in dazzle – a pseudo-science camouflage previously untested in the field, whereby painting bold patterns on the ship exterior made it difficult to confirm the depth of field or direction the ship was moving in with accuracy, leading to miscalculations of the ship’s anticipated position and thus protecting the ship from U-boat attacks. This work was mostly done by women and artists, and is utilized as a context to don while navigating womanhood now.

Feel free to listen, or participate by following along with the action here.

The stage directions will be read including the titles of the acts, and you can orient yourself using the index provided here.

The artist gratefully acknowledges support from Canada Council for the Arts.