From a media release:
Museum of Indulgence at Harbourfront Centre
Collaboration unites confectionary installation with hip hop in examination of excess
Nov. 11-Dec. 4, 2011
TORONTO, ON - Harbourfront Centre is pleased to announce the unveiling of the latest Fresh Ground new works commission, Museum of Indulgence. The multimedia project unites renowned artist Shelley Miller with hip hop performer, DJ and producer More or Les, and kicks off with an opening night performance and reception on Friday, Nov. 11, 2011 at 7 p.m.. The exhibition runs through Sunday, Dec. 4, 2011.
Museum of Indulgence explores the stereotypes of hip hop culture and features a new take on the term “consumer culture”. The exhibition combines life-sized dioramas with on-site performances that transform what seems like a natural history museum exhibit into something altogether different. Viewers become participants via an interactive recording studio in which visitors can rhyme along to music produced by More or Les specifically for the project, and the final track can be uploaded to the project website. Additionally, visitors can choose to appear in the music video for the project’s theme song, which will be shot over the course of the exhibition.
Montreal-based visual artist Shelley Miller’s work focuses on the sugar industry and its links to colonization and slavery, as well as epochs of great wealth and waste. Her sugar-based creations are meant to resemble classical museum pieces and, due to the perishable nature of the materials, allude to symbolic, cultural and societal degeneration. Meanwhile, More Or Les’ material features a contemporary take on the subject of excess. Obesity, binge-drinking, urban sprawl – it’s all up for grabs in Les’ quick-witted rhymes. Hip-hop culture has, since its origins, been a vehicle for social change and a voice for the oppressed. Museum of Indulgence makes this connection, showing that it is possible to make a statement and do it with light-hearted flair.
Museum of Indulgence is one of Harbourfront Centre's 2010-11 Fresh Ground new works awards recipients. The national legacy programme commissions the creation of new, innovative multi-disciplinary art works.
For complete event details and full schedule, the public may visit harbourfrontcentre.com or call the Information Hotline at 416-973-4000. Harbourfront Centre is located at 235 Queens Quay West, in the heart of downtown Toronto’s waterfront.
ABOUT FRESH GROUND NEW WORKS
Since its creation in 2004, Fresh Ground new works has become a catalyst for new Canadian artistic works incorporating more than one discipline or field. Through open national submission calls, Harbourfront Centre has awarded over $400,000 in prize money toward nineteen new Canadian commissions. These awards add to Harbourfront Centre’s 35-year history of commissioning new Canadian works in dance, theatre, music, visual arts and craft.
Image: A Layered History of Indulgence, 2011. Icing sugar on plywood. Actual size: 5 ft wide x 8 ft high. Photo: Shelley Miller.