Art Windsor-Essex respectfully acknowledges that we are located on Anishinaabe Territory – the traditional territory of the Three Fires Confederacy of First Nations, comprised of the Ojibway, the Odawa, and the Potawatomi. Today the Anishinaabe of the Three Fires Confederacy are represented by Bkejwanong. We want to state our respect for the ancestral and ongoing authority of Walpole Island First Nation over its Territory.
March 6, 1999 - August 22, 1999
Costumes and clothing are a part of our lives from the moment we enter the world. Whether for comfort or fashion, work or play, our clothing defines who we are, who we want to be (or who we are told to be), as well as our ever-changing place within culture and history. The complex journey from infant to adult is characterized by explorations of identity and imagination. The favourite childhood games of dress up and ‘let’s pretend’ prepare us for the uniforms of adult life.
For centuries, artists have been fascinated with the genre of portraiture as a means to understanding identity. Contemporary artists are often interested in the accessories of the extended body, that reveal the codes of the society that we find ourselves in.
The artists in the exhibition Dress Up use humour and a playful, hand-made aesthetic as part of their approach to costumes. Toronto artist Janet Morton’s knitted garments Cardigan (for a giraffe) and Balaclava (for a rhinoceros) have been fashioned for animals in the Toronto Zoo. Also on display elsewhere in the Gallery is a large knitted Canadian work sock called Memorial, a large hand screened red flannel lumberjack shirt called Canadian Monument no.2, and Sweater Bike, a bicycle with knitted adornments. Artists Kim Kozzi and Dai Skuse work collaboratively under the pseudonym of Fastwürms.