We wanted to be famous, glamourous and rich….” General Idea (active 1969–1994) came to embody and employ this maxim in their art. Like many of the group’s works, this statement was a cheeky reflection on the conventional public image of the artist as individual genius. Comprised of AA Bronson, Felix Partz, and Jorge Zontal, the group took on “a single point of view,” creating a unified, non-hierarchical entity.

General Idea: Life & Work tracks how this artists’ group arrived on the scene in Toronto in the 1960s and became visual and countercultural pioneers, creating a personal mythology and rhetoric that ran throughout their oeuvre. It illustrates how General Idea’s works playfully and unabashedly address queer identity, despite this facet being ignored by critics until the mid-1980s. Through mimicry, General Idea played with viewer’s expectations, reworking familiar formats and aesthetics, such as Pop art, magazines, and talk shows, in order to prompt critical reflection.

Thursday, September 13, 2018 in
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