Walking and Getting Rid of Something by Kirsten Forkert

Kirsten Forkert’s Walking and Getting Rid of Something is the final performance project in FADO’s three year long Public Places / Private Spaces series. This performance considers the problems of living in a consumer culture, juxtaposing two situational questions: what to do with unwanted material goods; and how to work through a collaborative or community decision-making process.

SEEKING: participants for collaborative performance action on March 1, 2003.
You are invited to come along for a walk. Bring an object you would like to get rid of. 

This could be:
for personal reasons
because it’s broken or useless or just takes up space
for other reasons, you just don’t need it anymore
because it can be easy, or difficult, to give something up

We are going to meet on March 1 and go for a walk together. During this walk, we will each find a way to get rid of the object, without simply throwing it away or selling it. We will help each other to do this. We will all decide together on the directions the walk will take, depending on where people want to go and how well we know the area. The walk will be over once everyone has rid themselves of their objects.

This project developed out of a collaboration with Peter Conlin. It is inspired by questions of what defines a collective experience: Why did you come here? Why are we here together? What kinds of relationships and dialogues could develop out of a group of people brought together, absurdly, by what we don’t need? Could this be thought of as community, however brief? Is this utopian? Maybe.

Artist Talk with Kirsten Forkert and Sylvie Cotton
February 26, 2003 @ 8:00pm
WARC (Women’s Art Resource Centre), 122–401 Richmond Street West, Toronto

Promenades by Sylvie Cotton

From February 19 to March 1, 2003, MontrĂ©al-based artist Sylvie Cotton will undertake a residency project as part of FADO’s on-going Public Spaces / Private Places series.

Promenades is a socio-artistic experiment featuring one-one meetings between the artist and selected participants, taking place between February 21–28, 2003. Participants will agree to spend between 3 to 8 hours with the artist, either in silence, or looking after the artist while she is temporarily blindfolded.


Sylvie Cotton, Art Action and Performance Artist, seeks participants to share with her (individually) in a day of either silence or blindness. Apart from maintaining a mutual respect for the moral and physical integrity of the other, each meeting will have only one condition: to be together in silence; or to be responsible for the temporarily blindfolded artist, or vice versa.

Each meeting will be unique. The activities that unfold will be decided in advance or as the day goes on according to an agreement reached by the artist and participant together in a preliminary telephone conversation.

The project will be documented by drawings made by the artist after each meeting. An evening bringing together all the participants will take place at the end of the project so that they can exchange their impressions of this socio-artistic experience based on trust, instinct and intuition, a divergence form our normal methods of communication, and also on chance.

Artist Talk: Sylvie Cotton & Kirsten Forkert
February 26, 2003
Women’s Art Resource Centre, 122-401 Richmond Street West, Toronto

© Sylvie Cotton, Promenades, 2003. Photo Paul Couillard.

The Rootless Man by Iwan Wojono

FADO is pleased to present Indonesian artist Iwan Wijono’s performance, The Rootless Man, in the context of the 4th 7a*11d International Festival of Performance Art. This performance is part of FADO’s Public Places / Private Spaces series.

In The Rootless Man, Iwan Wijono considers the commodification of culture and the destruction of nature, using a remote-controlled toy dump truck filled with earth. Wijono writes about his concerns:

“We live on the earth, we need the earth; we need food and water from the earth. But modern people little by little have distanced themselves from the earth; they want to conquer the earth, benefit and profit form the earth without having to take care of it properly. Most modern people from morning til night do not even touch the earth, everybody wants to be a businessman or millionaire, nobody wants to be a laborer or farmer, nobody wants to get their hands dirty. Forests have been felled in the name of industry, villages increasingly become cities or ghost towns, where villagers move to the cities. When the earth is plagued by disease, there are no longer any forests or clean water, dollars can buy nothing!”

A second performance, Body for Rent / Body for Auction, will take place between November 7 and November 9 as a public intervention at local malls in Toronto. The artist will offer his body as a commodity for public sale. Audience members can negotiate to “rent” Wijono’s body for a purpose and length of their choosing.

Disposition by Adina Bar-On

FADO is pleased to present Israeli artist Adina Bar-On’s performance, Disposition. A walking tour, lasting between one and two hours, Disposition is presented as part of FADO’s Public Spaces / Private Places series.

In Disposition, Adina Bar-On reframes personal stories in the context of local surroundings and circumstances. This ambulatory performance work speaks to the concept of viewpoint, using local geography, history and culture to influence the shape of the artist’s shared journey with the audience. As Bar-On leads people on a walking tour, she presents situations, instructions and images that question the familiar, and bring to the forefront the variability of both physical and emotional points of view. Bar-On’s work challenges us to reconsider the factors that determine what is seen and not seen.

Although the performance is free, attendance will be limited, so advance reservation is recommended. This performance is an outdoor walking tour, so audience members are reminded to dress appropriately.

This project is part of exhibition partnership between FADO and the Art Gallery of Hamilton. Under this partnership, a number of FADO performances will be presented in Hamilton as part of the Gallery’s Sevenseason program. Disposition will be performed at the AGH on September 27, 2002.

Adina Bar-On will also present an evening featuring a screening of recent video works, an artist talk, and her performance Home of Course. Adina explains this short, emotionally charged performance: “This work is my attempt to question what appears as the inevitability of destruction in the process of deconstruction.”

October 2, 2002 at 8:00pm
Implant, 58 Wade Avenue, Toronto

Talking to my Horse by Archer Pechawis

FADO is proud to present Talking to my Horse, a new performance by Vancouver-based First Nations artist Archer Pechawis. This work is presented as part of FADO’s ongoing Public Spaces / Private Places series.

Talking to my Horse is a meditation on two images: a wire service photo of American soldiers on horseback in Afghanistan, and a scene from Thomas Berger’s book, Little Big Man. In the book, Little Big Man’s horse tells him (in Cheyenne) of an imminent attack by General Custer. In this performance the Afghan horses speak to the American soldiers.

Pechawis writes generally of his work:

“My current fascination is what I call ‘transitional Cree culture’, the place where Cree culture meets the onrush of millennial technology. I explore this fascination in performance. Using digital technologies I attempt to locate and query this meeting place, however fleeting. My work is a temporary roadmap. These maps are signposts of the moment, which I create to share.”

In addition to the performance, FADO will host an artist talk on April 6 at 2:30pm in which Pechawis will discuss his work as well as providing information on current First Nations performance art practice in western Canada.

A Gathering for Her by Reona Brass

FADO is proud to present the premiere of A Gathering for Her, a new performance installation by Reona Brass. This work is presented as part of FADO’s Public Spaces / Private Places series.

As a performance and installation-based artist, Reona Brass explores concepts of ritual, transgression and resistance. Through the use of various prolonged and/or repeated actions, Brass explores the construction and meaning of these concepts. In A Gathering for Her, Brass will make preparations in a room at The Native Canadian Centre to be bound into a reconstructed ‘cradleboard’, a rite of passage denied her by a broken history. Referring to the rite of binding a child too young to walk, Brass will seek knowledge and comfort as she learns to take on the attributes of patience and humility.

The development of this project was funded in part through the Performing Arts Programme of The Laidlaw Foundation.


Our own actions are what we can wish or hope from humanity.
~E. Santamaria, Deep Sleep

As a performance and installation-based artist, I am interested in how the discourse, and practice of, compassion, struggle, growth, transformation, ritual and survival relate to contemporary indigenous culture. The first in a new series of works, A Gathering for Her is based on inquiries into and reflections upon Saulteaux rites of passage for women. Specifically, this work is based upon the rite of binding a child too young to walk. I seek to develop my knowledge of this rite away from all force of habit and scars of history. My intention is to bring about the experience of self -discovery from the private sphere into the public. A Gathering for Her is both metaphor and transformation. The boiled beet root, sewing machines and mattress are all chosen for their feminine qualities and histories. The actions are both predictable and unexpected. A parallel for the cultural evolution and matriarchal values that struggle to emerge. This is a real time action across real time passing. A moment now, or an hour later, you bear witness and take part.

Reona Brass, March 2002

Mettachine (Sequence 1) by Louise McKissick

FADO presents Mettachine (Sequence 1), an interactive performance installation by Canadian artist Louise McKissick. This event, presented in conjunction with Tranz <- – -> Tech and is the latest instalment in FADO’s Public Spaces / Private Places series.

Mettachine (Sequence1) is the first in a series of works by Louise McKissick that explore the social framework of medical biotechnology. A biofeedback machine will be used to track the effects of touch and language on the bodies of subject participants. These effects will then be mediated and broadcast over the web. Audiences can be a part of the project either as subject participants; by visiting the waiting room, which will feature a live feed of the biofeedback results; or by monitoring a live stream on the web.

McKissick creates a provocative performance situation by marrying clinical and relaxation biofeedback techniques – including hypnosis – with brainwave interface technology from IBVA Technologies Inc. IBVA provides an interface between brainwave patterns and personal computers – in essence, allowing users to control computers by thought. For Mettachine (Sequence1), McKissick will use the brainwave patterns of subject participants to access a web stream of live and/or archived visual information. This information will be relayed back to the participant, creating a biofeedback loop. The technology allows McKissick and her subjects to map a geography of information through visual narrative, where the rules of navigation are controlled by brainwaves.

Presented in conjunction with Tranz <—> Tech, Toronto’s international video art biennial.

Feu de Joie by Randy & Berenicci

FADO is pleased to present Feu de Joie, a new performance by Randy & Berenicci. This work is presented as part of FADO’s Public Spaces / Private Places series and is performed on the autumnal equinox.

Feu de Joie uses optics, trompe-l’oeil effects and a bit of low-tech magic to transform the Toronto Island airport into a backdrop for a meditation on the nomadic nature of contemporary existence. Disaster and delight intermingle as the artists frame themselves as miniatures on a puppet stage, endlessly struggling to arrive – or is it to escape?

Whether they are creating public art commissions or site-specific performances, Randy and Berenicci have proven themselves to be masters at creating intimate, small-scale monuments. They are pioneers of a style of work that combines sensitive and playful references to site with visionary metaphors that infuse historical and popular cultural references from art, media and science. Poetic and multi-layered, their work is unexpected, surprising, but never out of place.

Meet the shuttle bus at the Cameron House (408 Queen Street West) for transport to the performance location.

Open Surgery by Oreet Ashery & Svar Simpson

FADO presents Open Surgery, an interactive live art installation with British artists Oreet Ashery and Svar Simpson. This is the latest instalment in FADO’s ongoing Public Spaces / Private Places series.

Surgery (Concise Oxford Dictionary)
2) a place where a doctor, dentist, lawyer or other professional person gives advice or treats patients;
3) the occasion of this

Open Surgery is a playful investigation of notions of ‘self-improvement,’ with references to psychiatry, psychoanalysis, alternative therapies and ‘self-help’ industries. Ashery and Simpson look for ways to address notions of isolation and alienation while exploring the role of the artist as communicator, activist and magician.

Open Surgery kicks off on Sunday, August 19 with an opening party in the Waiting Room, an installation space where the general public is invited to play. The Waiting Room will be open every day from 4:00pm to 8:00pm. At the opening, ten lucky individuals will be invited to book an appointment in the Consultation Room, where the artists will work with the visitor to identify the participant’s sense of their own physicality and difference. A Treat-Meant will then be proposed.

The artists explain:

“The Treat-Meant may involve, for example, text, photography, creating body-prosthetics, breathing, touch, self-prescribed herbal remedies, food, juice, sense-stimulation, clubbing, and so on. We might propose to cook a dinner for the visitor, or make a toy for them/with them….We’re addressing the ‘confessional’ and notions of ‘true/fictional/performed-self’ in relation to confession. Open Surgery is interested to act out a common obsession to know-and-better-oneself, especially in relation to our bodies, our differences, and our sense of identity/identities. We want to investigate and develop models of shared intimate experiences.”

Join us after Open Surgery hours on Thursday, August 23 at 8:00pm for an artist talk with Oreet Ashery and Svar Simpson. The exhibition closes with a feedback party on Sunday, August 26.

ARTIST STATEMENT by Oreet Ashery and Svar Simpson

Open Surgery will take place in two rooms. The first room will act as a Waiting Room open to the public throughout the duration of the piece. Entrance into the Consultation Room will be by appointment only, for participants who have booked a session. Participants/visitors come for a first one to one/two consultation with the artists. This initial session will combine various methods of communication, like: conversation, questionnaires, touch, the use of websites and ‘gadgets’, art-making, etc. We work together with the visitor to identify an aspect of the participant’s sense of their own physicality and difference.

Combining our ‘life-experiences’ (as a move away from using notions of ‘expertise’) the two of us then create a Treat-Meant for the participant, which than becomes a Treat-Meant proposal. The Treat-Meant may involve for example text, photography, creating body-prosthetics, breathing, touch, self-prescribed herbal remedies, food, juice, sense-stimulation, clubbing and so on. We might propose to cook a dinner for the visitor for example, or make a toy for them/with them.

The participants come for their second meeting, where we present them with our Treat-Meant Proposal, and then they can commission us to go ahead and treat them, which we do. At the end of the piece, participants are invited to a feed-back party/dinner/ meeting.

Open Surgery is working with and critiquing institutions like psychiatry, psychoanalysis and psychotherapy, new-age/alternative/art-therapies, methodology of conventional science, western medicine, ‘self-help industries’. Therefore, the relationship between us and the participants attempts to mobilize some of the power-structures and epistemologies embedded in institutions such as those mentioned above, and offer a channel for shared communication in ways that re/address notions of isolation, alienation, a disturbing sense of difference, displacement, feelings of lack of attention/time. We offer a treat!

We are interested in acknowledging the artist as communicator, activist, magician, shaman, alchemist, cook, visual performer, as a friend and as a stranger. We’re addressing the ‘confessional’ and notions of ‘true/fictional/performed-self’ in relation to confession. Open Surgery is interested to act-out a common obsession to know-and-better-oneself, especially in relation to our bodies, our differences, and our sense of identitiy/ies. We want to investigate and develop models of shared intimate experiences.

Although the project is performative, it’s intentions are by no means cynical. The process involved intends to be experimental, experiental, expanding and playful by nature.

Open Surgery also plays with notions from the art -world like ‘commissions’ and ‘open surgeries’ [a term sometimes used in the British art system for art crits], as a way of exploring the slippage between art and general strategies of survival and expansion.

Presented with support from the British Council and London Arts.

Image © Oreet Ashery & Svar Simpson, Open Surgery, 2001. Photo Paul Couillard.

Remembrance Day by Johanna Householder

Remembrance Day is a new performance work by Johanna Householder created in collaboration with her daughter Carmen Householder-Pedari, and is presented as part of FADO’s ongoing Public Spaces / Private Places series.

Describing Remembrance Day as a counter-monument, Householder uses war movies as source material to pose questions about the transferal of cultural values, information and attitudes from generation to generation. The work will be presented not as a theatrical narrative, but as an installation in which audience members are free to come and go as they choose – in the words of the artist, “less … a definitive performance experience than … some proposals for experiences.” Remembrance Day continues Householder’s investigations into the cinematic texts of the late 20th century, and her lifelong obsession with the gendering of knowledge.

In this performance, the artist works with her daughter Carmen Householder-Pedari. Carmen Householder-Pedari is completing seventh grade at Winona Drive Senior School. She has appeared in a number of film, video and performance works by artists such as Janice Cole, Robert Lee and Wende Bartley and Roz Kalloo.


From time to time over the last ten years I have collaborated with my daughter to produce performance works which explore some ideas around the transference of knowledges which we do not normally think of as taught — how to respond to emotional stimuli, how to physically occupy space, how to convey information with your face, which things are important to remember, and how our expressions are evaluated by others.

Parallel to this exploration is a fascination with how we take the large, crude expressions of popular culture; the big emotions, the clichéd syntax, the cartoon physiology, and adapt these ways of being to our own less grandiose existences. This too is something that is transmitted, perhaps involuntarily, in the intimacy of the mother-child relationship.

Remembrance Day is a kind of counter-monument to the things that are popularly commemorated, in this case, actions against the backdrop of war. How do we compose our anxiety (or lack of it) at being temporarily ‘at peace’? Re-embodying the codes contained in a variety of war time films, the performers will plunder their mutual memory banks for instructions for heroes and rules to live and die by.

Remembrance Day continues a recent series of investigations into the cinematic texts of the late 20th century and a lifelong obsession with the gendering of knowledge.

Some of the ideas we develop are visual, some active, some audial. Performance allows us to approach an idea from a number of directions and with a range of processes simultaneously. And speaking of processes, I find now that I am less interested in a definitive performance experience than in some proposals for experiences. For this reason we leave the audience free to come and go, to circulate around the work — more like one would view painting or an installation than theatre.

Johanna Householder, June 2001

Disclosure by UNDO

FADO presents three separate site-specific performances collectively entitled Disclosure, created and performed by the audio-based duo UNDO. This work is presented in the context of FADO’s ongoing Public Spaces / Private Places series.

UNDO uses minimal electronics to perform intimate sensual live soundscapes. For Disclosure, the performers accent the intimacy of the enclosures of a living space. The performers and their “extensions” (small B&W monitors and speaker/amplifiers) will be placed in closets and cupboards so that the audience will encounter the performance simultaneously in various forms at various locations. A second set of actions will refer to disclosure by focusing on corridors and thresholds (the spaces of negotiation between an outside and an inside). In this series, the performers will narrow or block the audience’s passage and force a reconsideration of the space given the intervention of the performer’s bodies.

UNDO offers these thoughts on the work:

“To enclose is both to hold and to be held by your own grip. To occupy an empty apartment is to fill it with its own emptiness, to saturate it with nothing. To disclose is to open yourself up to closeness, a reduction of distance, a proximate and narrow. How to read a throat as a corridor, a closet as a mouth, a threshold as lips and jaws. Investment of closet spaces, diffusion onto outside spaces; a room under, a room aside, a room over. How to speak here and in the next room and in the other’s mouth. Bare speaker and barely speaking. In Disclosure you will have to step over, listen inside and duck under.”

Disclosure on Christof Migone’s website:

June 28 @ 8:00pm
June 29 @ 8:00pm
June 30 @ 2:00pm–5:00pm

© UNDO, Disclosure, 2001. Photo Paul Couillard.

Meridian by Marilyn Arsem

FADO presents Meridian, a new work by Boston artist Marilyn Arsem, presented as part of FADO’s ongoing Public Spaces / Private Places series.

Meridian will take place at the beach on the south side of Ward’s Island on the longest day of the year. Beginning at dawn and ending at sunset, the artist will follow the line of the sun, marking out a hundred years of time. Now in the 50th year of her own life, Arsem will use this solstice mid-point as an opportunity to take a considered look in both directions – back into the past and forward into the future. As she undertakes her measured progression along the beach, Arsem will recount the history of the last 50 years, and imagine the next 50 years. Audience members will have an opportunity to ask questions about specific years and enter into discussion with her as she buries the past and sows the future.

ARTIST STATEMENT by Marilyn Arsem, May 2001

In recent years I have been creating site-specific installations in outdoor locations in the United States, Europe and Asia. In each work I am responding to both the history of the site, as well as to the immediate landscape and materiality of the location. All of these recent works examine hidden worlds that lie beneath the surface, ones which lurk underground, and those which eventually decay and dissolve back into the earth.

I am particularly interested in implicating the audience directly in the concerns of the pieces. I use different strategies to design a very distinct role in the work for the viewer, so that they have an experience that is both visceral and intellectual. To accomplish this, I incorporate a range of media, including text, video and performance, as well as using materials and objects generated from and in response to the site.

I insert my installation into the site so that it is nearly invisible. The viewers’ initial impression is that there is nothing to see. It is only as they begin to pay closer attention that they become aware of the elements that I have hidden in the landscape. The audience must make an effort to discover the buried images, take time to assemble the fragments, use their intellect, often in discussion with other audience members, in order to decipher and construct meaning out of their experience.

The installations operate in a liminal space, blurring the boundaries between art and life. Because of the almost imperceptible images, and the inevitable intrusions of the real world, the viewers’ interpretation of the experience has as much to do with their own projections and concerns as it does with my own. In that respect, the work functions as a kind of Rorschach test, and the audiences’ response is a critical component of the final work. Documentation of their interpretation of the pieces reveals the collaboration between artist and audience in the construction of meaning.

Image © Marilyn Arsem, Meridian, 2001. Photo Paul Couillard.

One Stitch at a Time by Devora Neumark

One Stitch at a Time is presented in the context of FADO’s ongoing Public Spaces / Private Places series and begins with an artist talk in Toronto. The project then continues, over several weeks in residency with three separate families.

This project follows upon and works with the tradition of the itinerant seamstress, who once moved into the homes of the people whose clothing she made. For One Stitch at a Time, over the course of several weeks, Devora Neumark will take up residence with three separate host families for as long as it takes her to stitch (crochet or embroider) a personalized object for a family member or the home.

One Stitch at a Time honours intimate spaces as a means of community engagement. It is an invitation to share and explore daily life and issues of the heart through personal storytelling and stitching. This participatory process is a key component, as the work is not meant primarily as a viewing experience. In the deliberate blurring of roles – invoking a question of who is the audience and who are the performers – is a statement about the capacity for each and every one of us to be authorizing agents of individual and collective memory and history.


To date my projects have included durational performative interventions on street corners, in subway stations and bus terminals, private homes and outdoor parks; place-mats inserted into restaurants; postcards; photographic works installed as memorial structures in public gathering places; stone markers, storytellings, sound pieces, and community based collaborations.

Working within seemingly ‘ordinary’ frames of action (peeling beets, crocheting, singing, telling stories, making dough, sweeping flour, walking the landscape), the contexts that I create for my work are in many ways a (re)negotiation of daily dwelling practice — attempts at rewiring both self and society in the aftermath of violence and trauma. Performative rather than performance, the work has been characterized by a direct sharing and exchange with the individuals who come across it (mostly incidentally) and who choose to approach / witness / participate.

I have been concerned with the authority of memory, social agency in the memorial form(s) and the negotiation of control and authority inherent in historical and cultural constructions and their representations. I place a particular importance on the continuum between the private and public spheres (the individual and the social body) and on the nexus between public(s) and community(ies).

Devora Neumark, 1999

The artist wishes to thank The Canada Council’s Inter-Arts Program and SKOL, a Montreal-based artist-run centre, for their support of this project.

The Addmore Session by Istvan Kantor

FADO is pleased to present The Addmore Session, a new work by internationally acclaimed Toronto artist Istvan Kantor. Presented as part of FADO’s Public Spaces / Private Places series, The Addmore Session is the latest instalment in The File Cabinet Project, a body of work that Kantor has been developing since 1993.

Audience members are invited to meet Kantor in his favourite environment, surrounded by file cabinets in Addmore Office Furniture, one of Toronto’s largest office furniture stores. Kantor and a number of guest performers will demonstrate the links between the office and the concert hall, information technology and sexual symbolism, communication and insanity. The all-day performance will include a furniture-opera, desktop-dancing, cabinet-catwalking, office-crucifixion and much more.

Kantor explores the file cabinet as a sculptural element in machinery installations, performances and video productions. His interest is more than a physical fascination or aesthetic obsession with monolithic office furniture. In Kantor’s hyper-theoretical interpretation, the world wide web is a machinery-monument of information storage furniture interconnected through computers. The gesture of moving cabinet drawers in and out, sliding them back and forth, becomes the engine of information exchange.

© Istvan Kantor, The Addmore Session, 2001. Photo Paul Couillard.

Spoken House by Otiose

FADO is pleased to present Spoken House, a new work by the British performance duo otiose, as part of the Public Spaces / Private Places series.

Spoken House is part of an ongoing series of works by the artists which examine various aspects of household space. Over three days, the artists will hold public conversations with everyone who visits this constructed space, beginning with a spoken description of the fictional Southfork ranch of the television series Dallas. With each description, Southfork will be remodelled into a private space built up from the recollections and desires of each ‘house guest.’ Visitors on the fourth day will find a text/audio archive documenting the results of the three-day performance project.


On November 1 & 2, spoken house inhabited the following fictional, historical and actual homes:
The Southfork ranch from Dallas.
Seinfeld’s apartment.
The family residence of the Brady Bunch.
The living room of All In The Family.
The home of the Simpsons.
The shared apartment in Friends.
The house occupied by Norman Bates in Psycho.
A shared bedroom in New York.
A house lived in by an old Estonian lady in London.
A shared flat in Finland.
An 18th century Chinese house.
Military barracks housing in Canada.
Cooperative housing in Toronto.
Mary Tyler Moore’s apartment.

Presented in the context the 3rd 7a*11d International Performance Art Festival with travel support from The British Council Canada.

<< Public Web >> by Tagny Duff

FADO is pleased to present << Public Web >>, a new performance project by Tagny Duff, as part of the Public Spaces / Private Places series.

<< Public Web >> is a performance provocation and interactive audio tour that places the audience in the role of performer and explorer. Wearing portable headphones and guided by the transmitted voice of the artist, participants will tour various destinations in the downtown core. A sculptural apparatus will connect a group of up to ten participants together for an intimate journey exploring various physical and virtual entry points into the space between the public and private.

<< Public Web >> is an interactive tour based on the model of constructive hypertext, offering the possibility for the audience/participant to create, change and recover particular encounters with the developing body of knowledge. Participants are given the opportunity to navigate through the city landscape while co-authoring a performance experience.

Wearing headsets with mics, individuals in the tour group communicate via a single channel radio transmitter. The tour group is held together by an apparatus consisting of nylon straps and plastic snaps allowing for participants to detach from the group at any moment, if they so choose. Performative gestures and conversations are undertaken by the group that in turn prompt the tour to navigate through one site to the next, resulting in a unique narrative/experience for every tour.

The artist’s voice offers the participants a variety of destination points and actions to be selected by the tour group. The artist follows the group unseen, wearing camouflaged radio surveillance gear. Ultimately, the tension between the artist’s ability to remote control the tour and the group’s decision-making ability (or inability) exposes the subtle complexities and agencies of influence inherent in the notions of “navigation,” “consensus,” and “interactivity.”

<< Public Web >> is an interactive tour that navigates through downtown Toronto. The performance tour is designed as a constructive hypertext model, offering the possibility for the audience/participant to create, change and recover particular encounters with a developing body of knowledge. In << Public Web >> participants are given the opportunity to navigate through the city landscape while co-authoring a performance experience. This performance questions both the limitations and possibilities of “interactive” navigation in the physical realm. Some other questions raised are: is consensus an effective model of decision making when groups are presented with multiple “options” for action, how is our experience and perception of the city and the body changed by utilizing a constructive model of navigation, and finally, how does the apparatus affect and transform the behaviour of the individual, the group and the incidental audience?

Thanks to Jen Small, Paul Couillard, FADO, Tim and Peter, The Scadding Community Cafe, 7a*11d, Samantha and Elyps, volunteers and participants.

Numb/Hum: A Subterranean Metropolitan Opera by Christine Carson

FADO is pleased to present Christine Carson’s Numb/Hum: A Subterranean Metropolitan Opera, part of the Public Spaces / Private Places series.

For the first three days of November, Toronto subway commuters used to the familiar sounds of moving crowds, screeching wheels, electronic warning signals may find themselves encountering something unexpected. Numb/Hum: A Subterranean Metropolitan Opera is an urban intervention that will bring 40 singers to a subway platform to hum harmonically in relation to the surrounding aural landscape. Arriving anonymously and unobtrusively in street clothes, the singers will perform the work for half an hour each morning during rush hour over the course of three days.

Presented in the context of the 3rd 7a*11d International Performance Art Festival.

© Christine Carson, Numb/Hum: A Subterranean Metropolitan Opera, 2000. Photo Paul Couillard.

Between Us by Jerzy Onuch

This performance is part of FADO’s Public Space / Private Places series, and is presented in the context of the 7A*11D International Festival of Performance Art.

For Between Us, the audience entered a room set up with six industrial fans. As the performance progressed, a repetitive soundtrack gradually increased in volume over 20 minutes from nearly inaudibly to uncomfortably loud, then slowly faded away over the next 20 minutes to silence. The performer, dressed anonymously, moved slowly around the room, whistling quietly into people’s ears and presenting a card with a poetic text. 

Between Us addresses the discomforts associated with intimacy, examining the double-edged sword of awkwardness, which can encourage solidarity and bonding or lead to alienation and isolation. The work also considers issues of proximity and personal space, setting up a situation that questions the role of the performer and his relationship to the audience.

Ethel: Bloodline by Louise Liliefeldt

FADO is pleased to present Ethel: Bloodline, a performance by Louise Liliefeldt as part of the Public Spaces / Private Places series. In this new work, Liliefeldt weaves together the disparate elements of her personal history into a tableau that plays on the tensions between the public meaning of private symbols and the private meaning of public symbols.

A wooden cross angles up out of the grass as the sun hangs low on the horizon. As you approach, you hear a piano playing, and you notice that the surface of the cross is covered in photographs. This is a language, a series of keys to a personal history, but how do you interpret them, and what do they tell you of the figure who clings to the cross?

Louise Liliefeldt’s work explores notions of beauty and the attempt to slow time through metaphors, symbols and physical actions. Her work is predominantly concerned with the politics of identity, especially as it intersects with issues of gender and race. Other concerns include the cultural conventions of spectatorship and the links between expanded emotional/psychological states and physical experience.

where do I go from here? by Stefanie Marshall

“A deviser of territories, languages, works, the deject never stops demarcating his universe, whose fluid confines… constantly question his solidity and impel him to start afresh. A tireless builder, the deject is in short a ‘stray.’ He is on a journey during the night, the end of which keeps receding. …And the more he strays, the more he is saved.”
Power of Horror by Julia Kristeva

FADO is pleased to present where do I go from here?, a new performance by Stefanie Marshall, as part of the Public Spaces / Private Places series. where do I go from here? undertakes a form of artistic alchemy by bringing ritualized behaviour and obsessive gesture into the public realm.

For several hours on two separate days, Marshall will wheel an old 2-burner stove through the streets of downtown Toronto. Following her instinct, she will navigate the social and physical geography of the heart of the city, stopping frequently to engage more closely with her surroundings. This work is about carving out a public place of permission for the private poetry of the body and the imagination. In taking everyday objects and private actions into the street, Marshall holds a mirror up to the privacy of our emotions and inspires a different conscious awareness. Those who choose to enter Marshall’s world may find themselves taken deeper into their own senses, where half-forgotten memories can be reawakened.

Marshall writes: “If they had lips, my fingers would be my teeth, masticating, probing holes, moving, wrapping, marking days and cloth, rubbing, sliding, grabbing, squeezing, slapping—manifesting complex thought into repetitive patterns of action. They are my memory… allowing me to survive.”

August 21, 2000 from 2:00pm–5:00pm
The artist’s walk begins at the corner of Queen and Yonge streets, ending at Spadina Avenue and College Street.

August 26, 2000 from 12:00pm–3:00pm
The artist’s walk begins at the corner of Bloor and Yonge streets, ending in Kensington Market.

© Stefanie Marshall, where do I go from here?, 2000. Photo Paul Couillard.

Urban Disco Trailer by Jinhan Ko

FADO is pleased to present the latest work of artist Jinhan Ko as part of the Public Spaces/Private Places series. Jin’s Banana House is back with Urban Disco Trailer, a small-scale multimedia extravaganza that redefines the dance club experience. The raw material for this project is a 25-foot long 1974 Holiday Cruiser – one of those pull-behind camping trailers originally designed to accommodate up to six people with the modern comforts of home. The transformed Urban Disco Trailer has been retrofitted with not-so-modern technology approximating a discotheque. Follow this impromptu, intimate discotheque-for-the-21st-century as it circulates the city.

In the words of the artist:

“Jin’s Banana House wants to know how we can be bored in a world where television is filled with dating game shows and cooking networks and the internet is filled with more shopping than we know what to do with? I’m not offering an answer to this question, but I’m inviting you to Urban Disco Trailer… This wheeled disco offers you the aura of utopian desires associated with motor travelling without leaving the parking lot. Club goers and art patrons alike are encouraged to attend this private/public party.”

August 17–19, 2000
35 Liberty Street, Toronto

August 24–26, 2000
101 Niagara Street, Toronto

Evanescent Rumour by Tony Romano

What is at rest is easy to hold;
What has not given a sign is easy to plan for;
The brittle is easily scattered;
Act on it before it comes into being;
Order it before it turns into chaos;
…Those who act on it ruin it;
Those who hold on to it lose it…
He learns not to learn and return to what the masses pass by;
He could help all things to be natural, yet he dare not do it.
~Te-Tao Ching, Chapter 64

FADO inaugurates its newest performance art series, Public Places / Private Spaces, with a 4-day window performance by artist Tony Romano. Evanescent Rumour uses personal memory as the departure point for a meditation on both the functionality and aesthetics of visual communication. The artist will sit in a storefront window for four days drawing images based on a specific memory. Audience members will be able to watch the artist drawing and view his drawings on a monitor through a live video feed, but as each image is completed, the previous one will be obscured, erased – in a word, shredded. In the end, only one image will remain. What will we glean from these images, and how will the making of them alter the artist’s own understanding of the event they attempt to portray?

Romano writes of this work:

This piece deals with the validity and quality of memory… Memory exists, but how certain can one be about its truth? How free are one’s ideas from emotions, physical environment, customs and habits? …In the process of receiving, storing, recalling and communicating, the idea becomes over simulated, fragmented and distorted. This evanescent cycle leads to false analogies, which become one’s reality.The wall between the subjective and objective (private & public) is created by mediation. My work serves as a tool to investigate reality and its make up. I wish to erase the walls between “art” and “reality”, bringing to light illusion, which is the grand mysterious reality of life. We live in a world surrounded by a trompe-l’oeil. In the spirit of the iconoclasts, I wish to break down all analogies that have served as the foundations of Western Culture. We have lost mystery and have constructed reality.

Image © Tony Romano, Evanescent Rumour, 2000. Photo by Paul Couillard.

Public Spaces / Private Places

Public Spaces / Private Places was a 3-year long international performance art series featuring 22 projects, created by 26 artists, from Canada, the US, Europe and Asia. The series explored the elements that turn neutral ‘space’ into meaningful ‘place’ through performances that examined the degrees of intimacy, connection and interaction that mark the dividing line between public and private. The series was particularly focused on performances created for intimate audiences. Some projects featured site-specific or installational environments that invited participants into a sensory or experiential journey. Others were process-oriented, involving public intervention, intimate gestures, or actions that were, by their nature, nearly invisible. Above all, the series explored the points where identity and geography intersect to generate meaning.

The series took place in Toronto in various locations, from 2000–2003, and was curated by Paul Couillard.

Walking and Getting Rid of Something by Kirsten Forkert
Promenades by Sylvie Cotton
The Rootless Man by Iwan Wijono
Disposition by Adina Bar-On

Talking to my Horse by Archer Pechawis
A Gathering for Her by Reona Brass
Mettachine (Sequence 1) by Louise McKissick
Feu de Joie by Randy & Berenicci
Open Surgery by Oreet Ashery & Svar Simpson
Remembrance Day by Johanna Householder
Disclosure by Undo
Meridian by Marilyn Arsem
One Stitch in Time by Devora Newmark

The Addmore Session by Istvan Kantor
spoken house by Otiose
Public Web by Tagny Duff
Numb/Hum: A Subterranean Metropolitan Opera by Christine Carson
Between Us by Jerzy Onuch
Ethel: Bloodline by Louise Liliefeldt
where do I go from here? by Stefanie Marshall
Urban Disco Trailer by Jinhan Ko
Evanescent Rumour by Tony Romano

Series Purple

An ode to FADO's history, Series Purple is composed of a collection of purple fragrance materials dating back to the Roman Empire. Dense, intense, and meandering, this fragrance tells us non-linear stories.

Top Notes

huckleberry, violet

Middle Notes

cassis, lilac, heliotrope

Base Notes

orris root, purple sage, labdanum