Ron Benner: Trans/mission: Barley-Corn-Maize

Ron Benner, Trans/mission: Meeting Room, installed at Robert Langen Art Gallery, Laurier University, Sept. 2017. Photo by Scott Lee.

Trans/mission: Barley-Corn-Maize
An installation by Ron Benner

January 20 – November 17, 2019
Reception: Sunday, January 20, 2 – 4 PM

The Visual Arts Centre of Clarington is pleased to present its first iteration of the Loft Gallery Commissions, Trans/mission: Barley-Corn-Maize, an installation by Ron Benner.

The Visual Arts Centre of Clarington (VAC) occupies a 1905 historic barley mill that once operated 24 hours a day, producing barley products that were sold across Canada, the U.S.A. and Commonwealth countries. In the 1950s the mill closed its doors due to low demand for barley products and the popularity of prepared cereals. After functioning as a drop-in centre, the building was repurposed into the Visual Arts Centre of Clarington in 1976. Many features of the space offer hints to the buildings long history; its architecture, carved initials and dates in various places, heavy concrete walls, and a rustic loft space. 2019 marks the first time the VAC invites an artist to create an annual site-specific installation in the Loft Gallery that responds to the VAC’s site and history.

Trans/mission: Barley-Corn-Maize is Ron Benner’s mixed media installation in response to the mill as a producer of barley. Benner has devoted his artistic career to researching the economics of food and the impacts of contemporary industrialized food systems. His installations often offer visual accounts of his extensive investigation to trace back the root origin of our food and finding its migration rooted in colonialism and imperialism. Concerned with seed circulation and farming methods, local community and globalization, Benner’s work provides a unique and critical perspective on essential elements of modern food systems. The installation will open on Sunday, January 20, 2019.
RSVP to the reception

Ron Benner is an internationally recognized, London (ON) based artist whose longstanding practice investigates the history and political economy of food cultures. Benner originally studied agriculture at the University of Guelph. Finding himself ethically opposed to bioengineering, he began to travel and research the politics of food. In 1995 he began working with Rural Advancement Foundation International, Ottawa (RAFI). In 2000 he was awarded the Canada Council Studio in Paris. In 2005 he participated in Art, Geography and Invisibility at an international geography symposium in Olot, Catalonia, the University of Barcelona, Spain. In 2010 he was appointed Adjunct Research Professor in the Visual Arts Department, Western University, London, ON. Benner’s work has been shown in solo and group exhibitions at the Kitchener-Waterloo Art Gallery, Museum London, Art Gallery of Ontario and many cultural institutions in Canada and internationally.

Also Opening on January 20th
Jane Eccles: In These Threads

The Visual Arts Centre of Clarington is a partially accessible venue with an accessible washroom. The front entrance can be accessed by a ramp and an inward-opening door (please note that we do not have an automatic door opener). It is important to note that the loft gallery is not accessible by wheelchair. Accessible parking is available on site. For any special assistance or queries about the venue, please call or email us. Admission is free and all are welcome.

The Visual Arts Centre of Clarington is committed to being a space that is safe and inclusive for all people. For this space to be accessible to people with varying allergies and sensitivities, it is a pet free, nut free, and scent free zone. We ask that visitors please refrain from bringing in animals, food items containing nuts, and wearing heavily scented products. Thank you for your consideration.

Visual Arts Centre of Clarington, 143 Simpson Avenue, Bowmanville, Ontario, L1C 3K8

Gallery Hours:
Monday: Closed
Tuesday – Thursday: 10 am – 9 pm
Friday – Sunday: 10 am – 4 pm

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