An opera about a column made by union workers, who are played by non-union actors, without an opera.
performance Saturday, September 26, 2015, evening
in collaboration with Culture Days and Nuit Blanche Saskatoon
in conjunction with Local History Room and It wasn’t until we closed our eyes that we could finally see what was there all along
As with any action, labor is essential to make a mark. The action required of the artist – rubbing, squeezing, pushing, pulling, grinding and polishing – mirror that of the worker. In this sense labor, as in art, is a process of understanding ones body (self) in relation to a given material. The performance An Opera of Workers Played by Actors with no Opera reconstructs, through a choreographed lighting and movement, the collaborative labor of 4 actors making, from memory, a column. The resulting movements and gestures will trace the collaborative efforts of these actors as they take on the role of Steel Worker Union Members. Following the motion, tension and gestures of these actors the light show will trace and illuminate the collaborative process of the columns making directly on the clay column; fusing both the memory of the object by the actors as well as the memory of the columns making by the artist.
Derek Liddington obtained his MFA from Western University (2007) and BFA from NSCAD University (2004). Liddington’s work has been exhibited in numerous public settings, including his intervention at the Art Gallery of Ontario The Sun has Always Set From East to West (Toronto, ON). Recent solo exhibitions include Every moment can be traced back to the first time the sun touched my face (Cambridge Galleries, Cambridge, Canada, 2013), Modern Love (Daniel Faria Gallery, Toronto, ON, 2013) and It wasn’t until we closed our eyes that we could finally see what was there all along (AKA Gallery, Saskatoon, Canada, 2015). Liddington’s work has shown internationally at Art Berlin Contemporary (2013), Onagawa AIR, Japan (2013) as well as NADA New York (2014). In the fall of 2014 Liddington staged a 12-hour ballet electric guitar ballad in collaboration with Zev Farber and Cara Spooner as part of Denise Markonish’s curatorial project at Toronto’s Nuit Blanche. Liddington has been the recipient of numerous grants, including support from the Toronto Arts Council, Ontario Arts Council and Canada Council for the Arts as well as being a finalist for the Toronto Friends of the Visual Arts, Artist Prize in 2011. Liddington currently practices in Toronto, ON.
This project is made possible through funding by SaskCulture for Culture Days 2015. AKA artist-run is generously supported by the Canada Council for the Arts, the City of Saskatoon, the Saskatchewan Arts Board, SaskLotteries and SaskCulture. A full list of our funders and partners.