February 18, 2018

DAVIE VILLAGE POST Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada LGBTQ2+ Hub

14 Days to Catch Retrospective of ‘Trigger: Drawing the Line’

Photo Credit To kiss and tell

July 23-August 7 by donation

Who better to challenge, provoke, and push ideas to the boundaries than a group of queer artists? That’s what curator SD Holman must have thought when she decided to mark the 25th anniversary of Kiss & Tell’s legendary exhibition with this years remounting of Trigger: Drawing the Line.

You might wonder – if curiosity keeps you awake at night like it does me – what “line” means here. After all, in art lines are not all created to represent the same thought, right?

In the original, highly influential 1990 Trigger project, female viewers used the markers provided to draw lines, as requested by the art collective Kiss and Tell. But the lines they drew didn’t resemble the instructions in the show. Instead of drawing lines on the walls at the point where “the increasingly explicit imagery became unacceptable to them”, audiences chose a non-linear way and “impassioned debates flowered on the walls around the images”.

Fast forward to 2015. Audiences are treated to the original images. To give the exhibition contemporary relevance, a group of artists curated into this current show are asked to respond to the images. They are asked what the 1990 “project triggers in them, and how they see themselves pushing boundaries today”.

Layers of meaning in this whole process of responding, when juxtaposed to layers of meaning in the 1990 exhibition, represent the vast changes that have taken place in society in the years between 1990 and 2015.

Some people, for example, still find certain art too explicit. But now our society performs the courteous gesture of placing warnings at the head of texts or performances. This protects the sensibilities of viewers who might find the piece offensive for any given reason.

To find out more about this razor-sharp retrospective, go here for tickets and information.

About The Author

Lee Nourse is a freelance writer based in Vancouver. Former West End residents, Lee and her partner hold a special place in their hearts for the West End as it's where they first met. They now live in Kitsilano with their finicky black cat Bubba.

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