LIBERTÉ CONQUÉRANTE/GROWING FREEDOM.
The instructions of Yoko Ono.
The art of John and Yoko.
Curators Talk: Tuesday, April 23, 2019, at 7 PM, at the Phi Centre
Opening Reception: Wednesday, April 24, 2019, at 5:30 PM
Exhibition Dates: April 25 – September 15, 2019
Curators: Gunnar B. Kvaran & Cheryl Sim
Yoko Ono (b. 1933) is a visionary, pioneering artist with a career that now spans over fifty years. During the 1950s in Tokyo, she introduced original questions concerning the concept of art and the art object, breaking down the traditional boundaries between branches of art. She has been associated with Conceptual art, performance, Fluxus, and happenings of the 1960s, and is one of very few women to have participated in these movements. Through her works of instructions and performances, as well as her activism, she has created a new kind of relationship with spectators in general and fellow artists, including her late husband John Lennon, inviting them to play an active part in the creative process. She also brings together two cultures – Eastern and Western – which extend and strengthen each other in continuous innovation.
This major exhibition in two parts will underscore the cornerstones of action, participation, and imagination in the work of Yoko Ono. Taking place in both of the Fondation’s buildings, the first part, The instructions of Yoko Ono, will focus on her ‘instruction’ works that emphasize the role of the visitor in their completion. Among works to be presented are text-based instructions such as Lighting Piece (1955), as well as participatory works including Mending Piece (1966), Horizontal Memories (1997), and Arising (2013). Also included is Water Event (1971/2016), which will invite the participation of 12 artists from Montreal and other parts of Canada.
The second part of the exhibition, The art of John and Yoko, will present the arc of collaborative art projects for peace undertaken by Yoko Ono and John Lennon. Among these is the Acorn project, the War is Over peace campaign, and the Montreal Bed-In, which will mark its fifty-year anniversary on May 26, 2019. Through an approach that spotlights storytelling, this part of the exhibition will feature a variety of stories from people who participated in the Bed-In, told in their own voices and words. These often moving accounts testify to the impact of what became a legendary and historic event, one which remains a key reference for the indivisibility of art and life, as well as the importance of non-violent action to inspire political and social change.
Ultimately, this exhibition wishes to impart Yoko Ono’s massive impact on contemporary art practices, on art reception, and on activism through art. The urgency and spirit of her work remain pertinent and perhaps more important than ever.
Fondation Phi pour l’art contemporain
Established in 2007, the Fondation Phi pour l’art contemporain, formerly known as DHC/ART, is a non-profit organization dedicated to the presentation of contemporary art. Housed in two heritage buildings located in the heart of Old Montreal, its programming has met with critical acclaim both at home and around the world. Each year, the Fondation Phi presents two to three major exhibitions, a series of public events, special collaborative projects and a forward-thinking education program. International in scope while responsive to the Montreal context, the Fondation’s programming is offered free of charge to reinforce its commitment to accessibility, while fostering a discussion on how contemporary art is invested with the topics and ideas that reflect and touch our everyday lives.
Fondation Phi pour l’art contemporain
451 & 465 Saint-Jean Street (at Notre-Dame Street, Old Montreal)
Montréal, Quebec, H2Y 2R5
Wednesday to Friday from noon to 7:00 PM
Saturday and Sunday from 11:00 AM to 6:00 PM
Accessibility: Partially Accessible
(514) 844-7474 #5104