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The Chorus: A Panel Discussion

THE CHORUS | A PANEL DISCUSSION
SATURDAY 11 MAY 2013, 2:00PM

ADMISSION | FREE

YYZ is pleased to host a panel discussion between Toronto artists Yam Lau, Andy Patton, and Québec artist Jean-François Côté. The panel will discuss Côté’s The Chorus, a video installation currently on view at YYZ.

Shot in Beijing, China in 2010, The Chorus stages the performance of “Snow,” a popular Chinese song transcribed from Mao Zedong’s poem of the same title. In this work Côté explores the psychological and spiritual impact of China’s recent transformation on its citizens. The performance of a song that signals the revolutionary sentiment of a bygone era is intended to gauge and also reveal the affective responses of the singers in the present.

The panel will provide contextual information on the production of The Chorus and explore a number of relevant topics arising from the work.

The topics include:

1. The content of Mao’s poem with reference to the deliberate conflation of myth, history/illusion, and fact- a practice that characterizes Chinese culture.

2. The treatment of portraiture and landscape in Côté’s early work and in The Chorus.

3. The relationships between persons and the traditional Chinese architecture seen in the work.

JEAN-FRANÇOIS CÔTÉ earned his Ph.D. in visual arts and art history at Université Laval with a grant from the Fonds québécois de recherche sur la société et la culture. Solo exhibitions include presentations at the Studio d’essai of Méduse; at VU; at the Museo de Arte Contemporaneo in the context of the 8th Bienal de Video Y Nuevos Medios de Santiago, Chile; in the context of the Mois Multi; and at the Yuanfen Gallery of Beijing, China. Côté was Professor in Time-Based Art and Photography at York University in Toronto. He is now Professor in Media Art at Université du Québec à Trois-Rivières. He received support from the Conseil des arts et des lettres du Québec and from the Canada Council for the Arts.

YAM LAU was born in Hong Kong and received his MFA from the University of Alberta. His most recent works combine video and computer-generated animation. Lau also publishes regularly on art and design and has exhibited his work widely in Canada, USA, Europe, and China. He is a co-founder of the community based art project “Donkey Institute of Contemporary Art” in Beijing, China. Lau is now based in Toronto where he is an associate professor of painting at York University

ANDY PATTON is a painter and writer who teaches at OCAD University. He recently went back to school to study the calligraphy of China’s Northern Song dynasty and the aesthetic thought that accompanied it. Patton has lived and worked in Toronto since 1977.