Michael Vickers of Akin Lansdowne profiled in the Toronto Guardian

Congratulations to Michael Vickers of Akin Lansdowne on being featured Artist Profile in the Toronto Guardian.

Michael Vickers is a Toronto-based artist with a practice that works in the space between sculpture, painting and installation. His recent work investigates the limits of different materials and presentation methods – painted, curled and bent forms made of various painted aluminums and steels, etched and engraved stone and marble works, and installations that activate the exhibition space in different ways.
— Joel Levy for the Toronto Guardian

Shanna Van Maurik interviewed on Hayley's World

Our very own Shanna Van Maurik of Akin Dupont was recently featured on Hayley's World , the blog of infamous and influential Canadian fashion designer Hayley Elsaesser. 

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In the interview, Shanna talks about her work, inspiration, fashion and of course SCUMLAND:

Everyone in Scumland is kinda gross, imperfect and a second-rate version of their real world selves. I’ve always felt a little bit out of place and I think that’s part of where being an artist comes in. I love doing things with my hands and creating. If you can’t afford something or something isn’t given to you, you can make what you have special as long as you’re creative. If you don’t fit into this world, make your own.
— Shanna Van Maurik for Hayley's World

Toronto: Tributes + Tributaries, 1971-1989 featuring work by June Clark of Akin Sunrise

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Exploring the experimental energy of an era, Toronto: Tributes + Tributaries, 1971-1989 brings together more than 100 works by 65 artists and collectives to highlight an innovative period in Toronto art history. The exhibition is curated by Wanda Nanibush, assistant curator of Canadian and Indigenous art. The title of the exhibition—a reference to the city’s many buried waterways—serves as a visual metaphor for the diversity of the cities art scene and its similarly buried histories. The exhibition will be accompanied by a live performance series, a film and video festival, as well as satellite installations throughout the AGO.

Amidst the social and political upheavals of their time, the generation of artists that emerged in Toronto during the 1970s and 1980s pushed the boundaries of conventional painting, sculpture and photography, exploring new ways of art making including video, installation and performance. This is the first time since the AGO’s reopening in 2008 that many of these seminal works have been on display. Organized thematically and punctuated by references to Toronto and its cityscape, the exhibition highlights the era’s preoccupation with ideas of performance, the body, the image, self portraiture, storytelling, and representation.

Toronto: Tributes + Tributaries, 1971-1989, 

September 29, 2016 – May 22, 2017

Contributor and influential photographer June Clark is an Akin Sunrise member. June Clark was born in Harlem, NYC and moved to Toronto in 1968. When she moved to Toronto she used a camera and walked the streets to search for “familiar” images in which to re-live and savour the richness of Harlem she missed. Clark describes it as both the discovery of the unfamiliar and memory of the known that captured her imagination.

Created in 1989, Clark’s Formative Triptych “feels fresh, urgent and, sadly, timely, which it surely was when it was made” (Toronto Star). When asked “Do you feel more in step with the current art scene today than in the late ‘80s?” Clark responded  “...I believe that one will always be behind if one is trying to be ‘in step’. Formative Triptych feels new and relevant and that helps me to know that it is successful.”

The late ‘60s and early ‘70s in Toronto, when many activities centred on Bathurst Street (Queen to Dupont), Baldwin Street and Kensington Market. Baldwin Street was where Clark found a family of like-minded women who embraced and helped her develop her photographic skills. They were called the Women’s Photography Co-op. The Baldwin Street Gallery, owned by Laura Jones and John Philips, was a welcoming place to learn and work.

Clark and her peers were able to mobilize across the country on issues that affected artists, like grants, artists’ fees, and jobs, the same issues still affecting artists. Clark says that “at one point I knew roughly 90% of the practicing artists and photographers across the country. I’m not sure this is the case today.”Like most of us Clark believes “that artists do not have a choice but to just do the work and to find ways to make it happen.”