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Join us for the Toronto debut of Community Action Center (2010), a sociosexual video by A.K. Burns and A.L. Steiner that explores the erotics of queer sexuality through an intergenerational cast. Drawing on earlier experiments in queer pornography seen in the work of Fred Halsted, Jack Smith, James Bidgood and Joe Gage, Community Action Center explores and exposes the limits and accepted paradigms of feminism, collectivism, pornography and sexual identity. The result is an intimate representation of a community of friends, lovers and collaborators.
“The video plunders queer theory, third-wave feminism, lesbian separatism, and gay-male Crisco Disco lucubrations, offering not a reconciliation of their differences but rather a site for their promiscuous entanglements…it is meant to turn you on, to spark contagious identifications and disidentifications that might extend the reach of this roving ‘center’… It is this optimistic engagement with the possibilities for sexual reorientation that makes CAC both art and something wilder.” — David Velasco, Artforum
The video is set to a soundtrack of music by Chicks on Speed, Effi Briest, Electrelane, K8 Hardy, Lesbians on Ecstasy, Light Asylum, MEN, Motherland, NGUZUNGUZU, I.U.D. (Lizzi Bougatsos & Sadie Laska), Kinski and Thee Majesty (Genesis P-Orridge), with original compositions by Justin Bond, Nick Hallett & Sam Greenleaf Miller, Ashland Mines & Wu Tsang, Sergei Tcherepnin and Tri-State Area.
A.L. Steiner uses constructions of photography, video, installation, collage, collaboration, performance and curatorial work as seductive tropes channeled through the sensibility of a cynical queer eco-feminist androgyne. She is a collective member of Chicks on Speed, the co-curator of Ridykeulous, founding member of Working Artists and the Greater Economy (W.A.G.E.) and collaborates with numerous visual and performing artists. Her work has been recently featured at P.S.1./MoMA, The New Museum, ICA/Boston and Zacheta National Gallery of Art. Steiner is currently visiting faculty at the University of Southern California in Los Angeles, and her work is represented by Taxter & Spengemann, NYC.
A.K. Burns is an artist, activist and compulsive collaborator who lives and works in Brooklyn, NY. Burns uses sculpture, video, collage and social performances to interrogate the perverse transactions of sexuality, power and language. Burns is a founding member of W.A.G.E. (Working Artists and the Greater Economy), and co-editor of RANDY, an annual trans-feminist arts magazine. In 2010, Burns was the artist-in-residence at Recess Activities Inc., NY with her partner Katherine Hubbard. Burns’ work has been recently featured at the Tate Modern (London), The Hessel Museum (NY) and forthcoming at the Brooklyn Museum (NY). Burns teaches at MassArt and received her MFA from Bard College, Milton Avery Graduate School of the Arts.
All Stills: Community Action Center, A.K. Burns and A.L. Steiner
photograph by A.L. Steiner, from Community Action Center, a video by A.K. Burns + A.L. Steiner, 2010