Rereading Room: The Vancouver Women’s Bookstore

November 10, 2016 – January 14, 2017

Alexandra Bischoff

A Graphic Notebook on Feminism, Su Negrin (1970). Image courtesy  Sung Pil Yoon.

A Graphic Notebook on Feminism, Su Negrin (1970). Image courtesy Sung Pil Yoon.

The Vancouver Women’s Bookstore opened in the summer of 1973. We’ve been told it set up shop in an old Victorian house somewhere on Richards Street. Rent was cheap—cheap enough that the Bookstore’s owners could afford to make donations to local women’s centres and other projects they cared about. We heard they lent Ferron (do you know her?) a grand to help her record her first album. From the street you could see the store’s bookshelves, then behind that, up a couple of steps, was a raised area where there was a desk and a few couches. There was coffee and a small library. The walls back there were covered in posters, mostly from a women’s collective in Chicago. We’ve been told that the shelves were stained by the same volunteers who would keep the place running for the next twenty-some years. Three break-ins, a firebombing, and two relocations later, the Bookstore closed in 1996. We haven’t seen pictures but we imagine the shelves were a nice colour.

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Big Toe, Giant Steps

October 16 – November 20, 2016

Tamara Henderson, Julian Hou, Walter Scott

Walter Scott, Take Heel Onto Thyself, 2016. Vinyl prints, dimensions variable. Courtesy the Artist

Walter Scott, Take Heel Onto Thyself, 2016. Vinyl prints, dimensions variable. Courtesy the Artist

An exhibition as part of The Next Event and Its Content at Occidental Temporary, 64 Rue Pasteur, Villejuif, France. Opening: October 16, 4-7 pm CET

Dear Paris… I mean Villejuif,

I last saw you in 2011 on a trip that your Government paid for. I was meeting a couple people they suggested and had a couple of days left to myself to see the people I wanted to see. Neil Beloufa was one of those people. I rode the train to your quieter corner of the French metropolis. I must have skipped lunch because Neil met me at the train station and the first thing he asked was if I was alright?

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Vancouver Especially (A Vancouver Special scaled to its property value in 1973, then increased by 8 fold)

Feb 21, 2015 – Autumn 2016

Ken Lum

Vancouver Especially (A Vancouver Special scaled to its property value in 1973, then increased by 8 fold), Ken Lum (2015). Photo: Dennis Ha

Vancouver Especially (A Vancouver Special scaled to its property value in 1973, then increased by 8 fold), Ken Lum (2015). Photo: Dennis Ha

Vancouver Especially (A Vancouver Special scaled to its property value in 1973, then increased by 8 fold) by Canadian artist Ken Lum is the first commissioned work presented at 221A’s new outdoor site as part of the Semi-Public program at 271 Union Street. The installation is a 1:3 scale replica of a mass-produced, Vancouver architectural style of homes known as the “Vancouver Special”, popularized from 1965 to 1985 with an estimated 10,000 homes built.

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