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George Henry Lees Building, Liverpool
Liverpool Independents Biennial

Marilyn Farley
Mediator / Creator (médiatrice, créatrice)
Montreal, Cananda

J pour Jeu

In 2011, artists located at 5455 de Gaspé (Montréal) learned the building had been acquired by Allied Properties – ergo guaranteeing a rise in occupation by big businesses, a steady increase in costs, a profound change in the ecology of the space and the gentrification of the neighbourhood. To their utter bafflement, tenants were bequeathed with a special edition of Monopoly, branded and named after the real estate company itself.

J pour Jeu evokes the carefully calculated strategies, the odds, chances and oppositions inherent to the lives of artists and cultural workers – be it in art making, occupying urban and institutional spaces, managing precariousness, or in relationship to audiences. In a gallery, in a museum or on a city wide board, the rules of the “art game” are complex and (successfully) breaking them proves tricky, turning the game into a gamble. Even acts of defiance run the chance of being repurposed or rebranded, leaving artists and audiences alike wondering who sets the rules, and who the game really benefits.

Let us strategically decide to play on a small scale. Negotiate the boundaries and find out which rules you consciously follow, or break. Play checkers, use the chips to bet, throw them at each other, pile them up, knock them down. Hide them. Invent a new game.
Tuesday Oct 5 2021