The Employee by Joshua Schwebel
Join us on Monday, April 26th from 10:30am – 1:30pm (EST / UTC-5)
Livestream Event: https://youtu.be/JVhMnIer3PA
Performed by: Camille-Zoé Valcourt-Synnott
Conceptual artist Joshua Schwebel has hired a grant-writer whose task is to write funding applications on behalf of the Forest City gallery. "The Employee", the project’s title, is both a one-year employment contract and an artwork contributing to the structural support of the Forest City Gallery, an artist-run centre in London, Ontario, which, as one of Canada’s first artist-run centres, has been publicly funded for almost fifty years, yet only can support a single paid staff member.
The delegated set of tasks comprising the artist’s project are for the Employee to apply for grants and obtain additional funding for the Forest City Gallery. These tasks at once the performance of an artwork and productive work benefiting the gallery. Schwebel successfully obtained project funding from the Canada Council for the Arts to hire the Employee as a delegated performer of the artwork. Any funds successfully earned by way of the project will be incorporated into the gallery’s operating budget, and potentially used to augment its future workforce. The work externalizes grant-writing and the administrative-economic tasks associated with the financial survival of the gallery, rendering this unseen work into a supplementary durational performance enacted peripheral to the exhibition space.
The artist gratefully acknowledges support from the Canada Council for the Arts, without which this work would not be possible.