Mixed Media

Doctored Thrift Store Art & Lyrics

How inventive.  Laura Kikauka’s installation, Strength Thru Embarrassment, converts a collection of garish thrift store art into musically labelled mixed media pieces.  She collages, draws and paints excerpts from song lyrics onto the art, “making the original artist and lyricist unwitting collaborators,” says Toronto gallery MKG127.

Above: Lyric from Leonard Cohen’s First We Take Manhattan.

-From David Bowie’s Space Oddity (better known as: Ground Control to Major Tom)

-From Carly Simon’s seminal anthem: You’re So Vain

-From Jean Genie, David Bowie.  The lyrics say:  Strung out on lasers and slash back blazers &  New York’s a go-go and everything tastes nice.

-From The Guess Who’s American Woman

-From Procol Harum, Conquistador

These works “pose a game for the viewer, who may often recognize the song lyrics but might be puzzled to name the song from which the lyrics were borrowed. Kikauka appropriates lyrics from all genres of popular & unpopular song: classic rock, pop, new wave, punk, indie, country, metal, jazz and easy listening and from such musical suspects as Abba & Aerosmith to Zappa & ZZ Top and the many musicians in between. -Exhibition notes, GalleryMKG127

-Installation view: Strength Thru Embarrassment

Laura Kikauka’s work over the last 25 years encompasses mixed media, electronic sculpture, drawing, photography, video, performance, music, text and costume creations.  Kikauka’s work is inspired and derived from decades of on-going collecting of found objects.  She works from a studio called The Funny Farm in rural Meaford, Ontario, on Georgian Bay.

The exhibition continues until March 10, 2012.

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