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Isa Tousignant, "Revolutionary creativity"

Revolutionary creativity

Isa Tousignant

From Hour


May is the month of anarchy, did you know that? To me, it's a supremely ludicrous idea: that anarchy, by very nature disobedient, could fit itself neatly into a 31-day period of celebration. Shouldn't it be breaking the barriers of May to spread into June, July, August?

Nevertheless, the Festival of Anarchy is on, and celebrations are taking place. For one, the end of the month sees the eighth instalment of the yearly Anarchist Book Fair (May 18-20, mark it on your calendar), and for two, today marks the start of Canada's largest political art show ever: the Art + Anarchy Montreal 2007 exhibition, featuring the work of over 230 politically engaged visual artists from around the world.

Until May 13 at the freshly transformed, hitherto abandoned space that is the Esplanade Loft Project - a 5,000-square-foot temporary gallery in Mile End - the exciting exhibition will display dozens of photos, installations, paintings, sculptures, sketches, etchings, art videos and comic art by established and emerging artists from Montreal, across Canada, the USA and abroad. Among the artists included are Norman Nawrocki, Linda Dawn Hammond, Danielle Sara Frank, Freda Guttman, Stefan Christoff, Alden Penner, Rebecca Bain, Catherine Herrmann, ZIBZ Black Current and Jason Milan Ghikadis. The exhibition integrates and complements an existing, celebrated travelling show, Paper Politics, curated by New York anarchist artist Josh MacPhee, which features 195 international politically and socially engaged prints.Art + Anarchy Montreal 2007 will also host a series of art events, including a panel discussion with anarchist artists, book launches, lectures (including one by noted international art critic John K. Grande, on May 6, inspired from his latest book, Dialogues in Diversity: Art From Marginal to Mainstream), films, a Situationist night (with a participant from the May 1968 Paris uprising), workshops, and opportunities to buy books and prints. Surf to www.myspace.com/artanarchymontreal for all the pertinent details.

To get to the Esplanade Loft Project Gallery, either for the inauguration tonight at 6 or for the official vernissage tomorrow night at 6, where MacPhee will make a multimedia presentation called "Printing Against the Grain," head to Esplanade Avenue, near St-Zotique - which you can get to by taking the metro to Parc, or buses number 55 or 80 north. See ya on the bus!

Art + Anarchy Montreal 2007

At the Esplanade Loft Project (6750 Esplanade), May 3-13