This April, Threewalls welcomes their newest Artist-in-Residence with the arrival of Vancouver artist Kyla Mallett. Mallett recently completed her MFA studies at The University of British Columbia with her work receiving early attention for its conceptual process and sociological impact. Mallett’s artwork, which explores “girl culture,” has primarily been a documentary and photo conceptualist practice. Past work includes the “Bully Project,” a video of women recounting stories of bullying and being bullied by other women, and a series of photographs of the notes passed between schoolgirls. Her work has been exhibited in a recent survey of contemporary Canadian photography at the Vancouver Art Gallery, at Catriona Jeffries Gallery in Vancouver, and has been published in Canadian Art magazine in the article Just Kidding: Kyla Mallett.
Due for completion during her one month, Threewalls residency, Mallett has begun work on a new audio ‘gossip’ project. Collecting bits of anonymous gossip through a voicemail service, Mallett will have her archive re-performed and re-told into a categorically divided set of soundtracks which will then be broadcast in the gallery from discreetly embedded speakers.
Continuing on the subject of language and communication in adolescent girl culture, Gossip dissects certain trivialized social practices associated with girlhood. While gossip has a deeply significant social history, traced by certain social anthropologists to the dawn of language, it is an overtly feminized practice which has historically been marginalized and dismissed. While this is central to our view of gossip, many of us continue to indulge on varying levels in this ‘guilty pleasure.’ Gossip lies in the intersection between the gendered and marginalized position gossip holds, and the extreme social power possible by such an activity. It is between these spaces that lies a potentially disruptive, pluralistic and ultimately feminist social practice.
Everyone is welcome to contribute to the Gossip project by calling the Gossip hotline at 1-800-874-3185 or email: firstname.lastname@example.org to leave anonymous scoop.