Sunday November 13, 2011 - 12am to 12am
Michele Karch-Ackerman brings forward lost histories and buried pasts. Her exhibition Foundling transforms the gallery into a canteen for unwed mothers. One hundred baby sleepers are suspended, ghost-like, above a fifty-foot table ornamented with one hundred mismatched teacups and saucers arranged in two rows. The table is adorned with a sweeping skirt made from vintage curtains; around this are eight card tables, each covered with a vintage table cloth and set with creamer, sugar bowl, and a framed copy of “the rules and regulations for girls and unwed mothers,” attended by a single chair. Accompanying the tables and baby gowns is a vintage depot secretary with two stainless steel shelves that hold teapots, tablecloths, and canisters of tea, sugar, spoons, and cookies.
The artist explains, “My installation was created in honour of those secret lives. Foundling is my gift of acknowledgement and prayer for those young mothers and their babies and their sorrow.” In Foundling, the audience experiences the misunderstandings and myths of near-forgotten histories falling away as they become witness to the story retold.
This is the last stop on a five-gallery tour through Ontario. The exhibition and catalogue are presented in partnership with Grimsby Public Art Gallery, the Agnes Jamieson Gallery (Minden), and the Tom Thomson Art Gallery (Owen Sound).
Foundling Tea Service Thursdays, 2:00 to 3:30 pm
The artist will perform a tea service for gallery guests at select times during the exhibition. Special service can be arranged; please call to book.
Artist talk and catalogue signing: Sunday November 13, 2 – 5 pm. A full-colour catalogue with essays by Virginia Eichhorn and Dominic Hardy accompanies the exhibition.