Tyler Muzzin: The Town Musicians of Bremen (and Elsewhere)
July 20 – October 11, 2021
Art in the Trees, Gallery Stratford
The Town Musicians of Bremen (and Elsewhere) is comprised of 13 images that revisit the eponymous fairy tale collected by the Brothers Grimm in an edition of stories published in 1819.
In his 2019 book On Time and Water, Icelandic writer and activist Andri Snær Magnason considers the importance of myth and storytelling when situating ourselves within the current ecological situation. Data and statistics, of which we have no shortage, are important when expanding scientific research, but the enormity of their scale can leave the individual feeling emotionally and intellectually paralysed.
From a young age, storytelling and play are two significant activities that form our idea of ecological citizenship. Through these activities, individuals learn about the physical environment they inhabit and the various species they cohabit it with. This education is largely determined by the way things are represented—for example, the different forms of toys, stories, and illustrations children are exposed to. Magnason asks how myths and stories can resonate with ecological citizens (of all ages) at an emotional and intellectual level.
This series and installation re-reads the Grimm tale, collected at the height of the industrial revolution in Europe, in light of our current ecological situation. Present in this re-reading are ideas of inter-species collaboration, creative problem solving in dire times, and the frequent bedfellowship of industrialization and greed. Installed within the trees of Upper Queens Park, between Gallery Stratford and Festival Theatre, the banners invoke the tradition of festivity and theatricality that has drawn millions of people to Stratford over the years.
Tyler Muzzin is an artist and writer living in Innerkip ON. Muzzin holds a BA in English Language & Literature from the University of Western Ontario (2010), a BA in Studio Art from the University of Guelph (2013), and an MFA from the University of Lethbridge (2019). His artistic practice uses lens-based media to respond to ideas of ecological citizenship in the public imaginary, with a focus on the relationships between humans and non-humans and occidental constructions of nature and culture. Recent group exhibitions include Seeking the Periphery at the Ryerson Department of Architectural Science, Toronto ON (2021) and Measures of Absence at the Inverness County Centre for the Arts, Inverness NS (2021). Forthcoming critical writing includes essays on the work of Common Collective (for the Woodstock Art Gallery) and on Libby Oliver’s exhibition Soft Shells at Gallery Stratford (for Peripheral Review) that will be published in Winter 2021-22.
Art in the Trees is Gallery Stratford’s new outdoor exhibition venue extending the gallery experience into the physical and natural environment. Positioned in the trees between Upper Queens Park, home of The Stratford Festival’s Festival Theatre, and Gallery Stratford, Art in the Trees provides opportunities for artists working in lens based or digital media to take their work outside the gallery space, interacting with new audiences and animating public space in a four season 24/7 outdoor environment. Gallery Stratford welcomes exhibition proposals from artists interested in both alternative modes of presentation and in creating work that provides artistic interventions in the natural and physical environment. Art in the Trees is sponsored in part through the Destination Animation Fund RTO4 (Ontario Ministry of Heritage, Sport, Tourism & Culture Industries)
54 Romeo Street S.
Stratford, ON N5A 4S9
Gallery Hours: noon to 8 PM daily
Art in the Trees Hours: 24/7 daily
Admission is Free
Both venues are partially accessible
519-271-5271 x 222