Own Your Cervix is an interactive installation that uses menstrual blood to physically and metaphorically create a gendered space reflecting on what defines our bodies.
Tangled Art Gallery opens the New Year with an immersive exhibition that investigates feminist decolonial discourse through an installation involving cervical self-examinations.
Exhibition: January 13- March 31
Press Preview: January 12, 1:00-4:00 pm
Opening Reception: January 12, 7:00-9:00 pm
TORONTO, ON – Tangled Art Gallery (TAG), Canada’s first gallery dedicated to showcasing disability arts and advancing accessible curatorial practices presents its first exhibition of the New Year. Own Your Cervix is a collection of mixed media works by Vanessa Dion Fletcher, a recent MFA graduate from The School of The Art Institute of Chicago, that endeavors to create art and experiences that promotes selfreflection, debate and ultimately opens communication among diverse populations.
“In this boundary-pushing show, Dion-Fletcher uses installation and performance to invite us all to think about how our bodies, and the ways we think about our bodies are marked and defined, challenging a medical or anthropological lens” remarks Eliza Chandler, programmer of the exhibition and former Artistic Director of Tangled. “It is rare to have a chance to interact with personal parts of ourselves in a way that is collective and also political.”
Textiles, pattern and the athletics of beauty become the backdrop for selfexamination in the context of a feminist decolonial discourse. As Dion Fletcher explains, “Creating gendered spaces, whether they are physical, public or on screen I employ porcupine quills, damask patterns and menstrual blood to reveal the complexities of what defines a body physically and culturally.” Own Your Cervix expresses ideas of gendered spaces, lived experiences, and cultural inequity. As part of the exhibit, audiences will be invited to participate in private cervical self-exam sessions, guided by the artist. All persons with or without a cervix are welcome to participate. Materials and instruction will be provided in the privacy of a 30-minute individual appointment.
About The Artist: Vanessa Dion Fletcher employs porcupine quills, wampum belts, and menstrual blood to reveal the complexities of what defines a body physically and culturally. She links these ideas to personal experiences with language, fluency, and understanding. All of these themes are brought together in the context of her Potawatomi and Lenape ancestry and her learning disability caused by a lack of short-term memory. In 2016, Dion Fletcher graduated from The School of The Art Institute of Chicago with an M.F.A in performance. She is the recipient of the Canada Council for the Arts International Residency in Santa Fe, New Mexico U.S.A.
ABOUT TAG: TAG is Canada’s first disability arts gallery dedicated to advancing accessible programming and curatorial practices. TAG offers programming throughout the year and is proud to be barrier-free, cost-free, and open to the public.
CONTACT / INTERVIEWS: TAG is located in studio 122, main floor of the 401 Richmond Building at Spadina and Richmond Street West. Our hours are 11:00am-5:00 pm, Tuesdays-Saturdays.