Lawrence Weiner and Carey Young

Lawrence Weiner and Carey Young

The Power Plant

Lawrence Weiner
catalogue cover design for
The Power Plant, Toronto, 2009

March 11, 2009

14 March – 18 May 2009


‘Counter Offer’

Opening Reception:
Friday, 13 March, 2009
8PM – 11PM
231 Queens Quay West
Toronto ON Canada M5J 2G8

‘THE OTHER SIDE OF A CUL-DE-SAC’ is a major new exhibition by Lawrence Weiner, commissioned by The Power Plant. The project highlights the continuing vitality and currency of Weiner’s sculptural practice through the commissioning of new work and by providing a striking architectural context in which to situate his works, including interior, transitional and exterior spaces and surfaces of The Power Plant building. For Weiner, the literal realization of a work is in many ways superfluous its existence. ‘THE OTHER SIDE OF A CUL-DE-SAC’ intentionally highlights this conceptual pre-condition by emphasizing opportunities for reception of the works in the exhibition beyond the gallery spaces of The Power Plant.

‘THE OTHER SIDE OF A CUL-DE-SAC’ consists of five works that function as fragments of a whole. The lobby of The Power Plant creates the entrance to the exhibition with Weiner’s FOR BETTER OR FOR WORSE (2001). Its attendant multifarious meanings lead into to the largest gallery on the ground floor of The Power Plant, which contains MORE THAN ENOUGH (1998). This alchemical work culminates, or explodes if you will, into a fragment MORE THAN ENOUGH, a work commissioned for the smokestack of The Power Plant. CUL-DE-SAC (2009), the newest work and produced expressly for the exhibition, responds to a culmination of sorts on the forty-foot high walls of the clerestory of The Power Plant.

The fifth element of the project is the forty-eight page hardcover publication THE OTHER SIDE OF A CUL-DE-SAC, which shares the title of the exhibition. Co-designed by Weiner and Hahn studio, Toronto, the publication re-configures the works within the book format, and includes texts by exhibition curator and Director of The Power Plant Gregory Burke and critic and poet Wystan Curnow.

His most substantial exhibition of new work in Toronto to date, ‘THE OTHER SIDE OF A CUL-DE-SAC’ also builds upon Weiner’s long-term relationship with the city. This enduring relationship began in earnest in 1977 with an engagement at the Centre for Experimental Art and Communication (CEAC), where he created one of his earliest sound-work installations.

Curated by Gregory Burke, Director of The Power Plant

Lead Donor:
Albert and Temmy Latner Family Foundation

Smokestack Commission Support Donors:
Michael F. B. Nesbitt
Victoria Webster & Gabe Gonda

CAREY YOUNG, ‘Counter Offer’
Drawing together works in video, photography, text and performance, ‘Counter Offer’ presents an overview of Carey Young’s witty and insightful explorations of corporate and legal culture. For the past decade Young has investigated art’s links with global commerce, together with legacies of Conceptual art and institutional critique. Immersing herself in the business and legal worlds, Young examines them from the inside out. As such Young makes no claims to an outsider status, but teases out her own, her viewers’ and her host organizations’ complicity with corporate values and processes as a way to discuss ideas of critical distance.

The video I Am a Revolutionary (2001) shows a motivational trainer coaching Young to sound like a convincing ‘radical’. In Product Recall (2007) we see the artist in a psychotherapy session attempting to match advertising slogans about creativity with their respective global brands. Notions of listening, learning and speaking figure in other key works. For the public speaking project Speechcraft (2007 and ongoing) Young collaborates with a Toronto Toastmasters club. Meanwhile the video Everything You’ve Heard is Wrong (1999) shows Young trying to lead a corporate communication skills workshop at Speaker’s Corner.

Carey Young (born in 1970, in Lusaka, Zambia, lives in London, UK) has exhibited widely, recently with a solo show at Paula Cooper Gallery, New York (2007) and Thomas Dane Project Space, London (2008). ‘Counter Offer’ is her first solo show in Canada.

Curated by Senior Curator of Programs, Helena Reckitt

Carey Young ‘Counter Offer’ Support Sponsor:
Aylesworth LLP

Carey Young ‘Counter Offer’ additionally supported by:
Charter Communications

The Power Plant

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The Power Plant
March 11, 2009

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