Jess Dobkin’s Wetrospective

Art Gallery of York University


“Driven by an interest in how one might performatively engage the energetic liveness of archives from polysemous perspectives Jess Dobkin’s Wetrospective takes up and takes apart the linear, patriarchal, and authoritative conventions of archive-making impulses. Channeling them instead toward more rhizomatic readings and feminist relationalities, she upcycles her own archive of past performances in ways that constitute her concept of “bendy-time.” The “archive” performs in this exhibition at the same time as it makes sense of (as in making sensate and sensual) an artist’s 25-plus-years of performance art work—including all its material and immaterial remains, reminders, and affective labour. This exhibition demands of archives what we expect from performance: the live encounter of experience in a ritual of transformation. Taking past performances as cues and as clues, this exhibition is a polytemporal, feminist, and queer experience of an archive of possible futurities, open to forever accommodating the always-shifting communities of belonging that Dobkin’s performance practice entails and magically conjures.”
– Emelie Chhangur

Solo Exhibition curated by Emelie Chhangur. Produced by the AGYU with support of Sensorium: Centre for Digital Arts and Technology at York University, the AMPD Makerspace, a Theatre Centre residency and Canada Council for the Arts and the Ontario Arts Council. Made in community and collaboration with Laura Levin, Joel Ong, Lisa Kiss, Jeremy Mimnagh, Jesse Garrison, Thalia Godbout, Moe Angelos, Dany Lyne, David Hawe, Dan Dobson, Jeremy Saya, Andrei Pora, Nguyen Nam, Tina Fance, Zhouyang Lu, Joey Morin, Cheng Shao, Tamyka Bullen, Andrew Zealley, Tania Anderson, Henry Chan, Alex Tigchelaar.