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The LAB: 250 REMIX Tegan Forbes

January 28, 2011 - January 28, 2011

My public art practice is heavily inspired by street art, travel, social revolution and community collaboration, all of which have the capacity to infiltrate a personal narrative into public space. The starting point for 250 Remix is an investigation into Victoria’s urban landscape through the navigation of media, social eccentricities and areas of communal tension. Rather than recycling the politicized stereotypes of Victoria, I explore the nuances that are currently making history. The goal is to help amplify the ongoing streams of expression that continue to create the unique culture in British Columbia’s capital city.

Through examining personal stories and points of urban tension my work re-articulates the social landscape and the way information is shared within and among communities. 250 Remix addresses the ongoing conflict pertaining to the rabbit infestation at the University of Victoria. For the duration of this installation community members are invited to witness and contribute to the language that enables the rabbit controversy. Rabbit foot key chains hang in front of words that have been found in newspapers and Internet articles describing the ongoing rabbit crises in Victoria. Participants are invited to take a keychain as a souvenir of this exhibition with the understanding that the selection of a particular key chain denotes support for the associated word. To encourage expression through community collaboration there is a supply of blank cards available to write on and help grow the installation.

Working with local narratives merely serves as a starting point for a deeper analysis into the identity of the location. How does the context in which a history is presented effect the way it is viewed? Found objects, random happenings and idiosyncratic gestures integrate their way into the collage of the urban archive.

Within the larger framework of a public art practice, 250 Remix attempts to not only examine the whys and wherefores of how personal ideology is circulated back into the public domain but to shift the focus away from conflict and towards the impetus that motivates our voice of revolution. My investigation is based on archival research, personal stories from community members, and spending time as a witness in a city that I am new to. This analysis activates the imaginative use of what already exists in Victoria and creates an opportunity to reframe the current tensions by instigating subtle shifts in the way information is shared.

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