The Future: Before | InterAccess

The Future: Before
A solo exhibition of works by Nancy Paterson
April 4th –  May 26th 2018

Biclye TV brightened
Image: Bicycle TV by Nancy Paterson (1989)

Now Magazine
Canadian Art Magazine

The Future: Before is an exhibition of works by pioneering Canadian new media artist and feminist writer Nancy Paterson. Prolific and critical in equal measure, Paterson’s career as an artist, writer, curator, and educator has spanned over 30 years and has developed in many ways in parallel with InterAccess and Toronto’s electronic art scene. Paterson has practised primarily in Toronto though has travelled extensively delivering lectures and participating in group exhibitions internationally. Her influence stretches beyond the Canadian media arts milieu. Her contributions to artist-run culture as it is known today in Canada is widely felt.

Over several decades Paterson has been an active member of InterAccess in a variety of capacities: as a guest curator (with the online and offline group exhibition Disembodied in 1997), featured artist (in the exhibition Game Girls (1999) and Meantime to Upgrade (2013)), panel discussant (in the NERVEgate Conference in 1997 and the Subtle Technologies Conference in 1999) and, workshop participant.

Through the use of the latest technologies, Paterson’s oeuvre consistently articulates a critique of contemporary social conditions while envisioning an alternative future. Two of Paterson’s most widely known works will be on view in this exhibition The Future: Before: Bicycle TV (1991) and The Machine In The Garden (1993). These two works are some of the last that remain in Paterson’s personal collection.

The Basement Tapes is an additional program that will be presented in conjunction with Paterson’s exhibition and InterAccess’s 35th Anniversary festivities. This event will take the form of a roundtable reunion for some of the most influential artists, curators, and arts administrators involved in Toronto’s early electronic arts scene.

During The Basement Tapes Paterson will recount the establishment of ARC in 1979, a storefront gallery that is regarded as the first artist-led organization in Toronto entirely committed to media arts and the first recipient of exhibition funding from the then newly established Media Arts division of the CCA. ARC’s impacts on the media art landscape in Toronto continue to resonate in spaces that include Ed Video, Trinity Square Video, and InterAccess.

The highlighting of Paterson’s work in a solo exhibition seeks to honour the impacts she has made on the national and local media art landscape while building on her established history of exhibiting in artist-run spaces including, A Space in 1989, Artspeak in 1999, and InterAccess in 2014. Paterson has also worked at a number of artist-run spaces in Toronto including Charles Street Video and A Space. It is no doubt that The Future: Before will serve as a catalyst to reconnect Toronto’s electronic art veterans and media arts community.

This exhibition will also prove to be an exercise in new media art preservation and reanimation. As an arts organization dedicated to the intersections of art and technology the conservation of media artworks is, for us, a perpetual challenge and priority.

Opening reception:
Wednesday, April 4, 2018 from 7pm – 10pm.
Artist in attendance.

Additional Programming:
Artist Talk With Nancy Paterson with exhibition curator, Shauna Jean Doherty
Saturday, April 21st, 2018, from 3pm-4pm

Nancy Paterson Biography
Nancy Paterson is a Toronto-based artist and Associate Professor at OCAD University. Early media works incorporated images and machines associated with 1950s domestic environments and her explorations into interactivity in the 1980s were significant for women entering new media art practice. The paper entitled “Cyberfeminism” (1992) contributed to discussions around feminism and technology and her inclusion in the 2007 exhibition ‘Cyberfeminism Past Forward’ in Vienna evidences Paterson’s contribution to the area. Paterson has been on the Internet since late 1982 [UTZOO] and she has incorporated networks into her art practice. The Internet-based “Stock Market Skirt” (2000) led directly to creative visualization of Internet infrastructure and a Ph.D in Communications and Culture at York University (2009) with research in network studies.


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