Thoughtbags Curatorial Tour With Alison Cooley

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Thoughtbags Curatorial Tour With Alison Cooley
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Younger Than Beyoncé Gallery says
Join curator Alison Cooley for a tour of YTB Gallery's latest exhibition THOUGHTBAGS. Featuring the work of six local artists.

Ben Compton
Naomi Dodds
naakita feldman-kiss
Phuong Nguyen
Laura Simon
Jessica Vallentin

THOUGHTBAGS (Or, Every Image is a Gushing Sack of Ideas) brings together the work of six Toronto artists, taking the life of knowledge as its starting point. Borrowing a term from Kurt Johannessen’s performative lecture practice, THOUGHTBAGS queries ideas and their transmission through collective experience.

The Internet has soaked us in the knowledge that an idea is a virus— it is self-replicating, self-interested, it travels across vast expanses of space, passing from person to person. Viral ideas manifest as memes, tropes, stories, images that grow a life of their own through transmission. And yet, far pre-internet, the proto-scientific concept of aether was offered as a material explanation for the movement of everything from light to gravity to thought. Still (sometimes against our better judgment) we speculate about the substance that mediates our ideas.

The artists assembled in THOUGHTBAGS engage in that speculation, probing the role of iconography and narrative in the diffusion of ideas. A proliferation of Laura Simon’s Pikachu forms explore the formal identity of pop culture characters, crowd-sourced stories form the body of naakita feldman-kiss’s inquiry into shared and anonymous narratives, and Naomi Dodds mechanically reconfigures film footage, manipulating the conventions of cinema. Other works experiment with the felt dimension of ideas, from Jessica Vallentin’s perfumes created from the scents of people close to her, to Ben Compton’s bizarre ode to Dollarama and its visual signifiers, to paintings by Phuong Nguyen that examine the colonial history of Chinoiserie and its contemporary expression in an age of mass production. Together, they respond to the strange and interconnected lives of ideas, and the migration of images and stories as sticky, imperfect vessel for thought.
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By: Younger Than Beyoncé Gallery