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A Littoral Reconstruction, 2008


During the summer and fall of 2007, a number of assaults targeting Asian Canadian anglers in southern and central Ontario were reported to authorities. The incidents unhinged certain established assumptions about multicultural Canadian society, revealing an undertow of xenophobia that continues to separate the mixed urban population from the predominantly Anglo, agrarian communities outside of major cities. A number of arguments in the ensuing debate "explained" the attacks in the context of conservation and resource protection, sublimating anxieties about cultural difference into claims of natural and geographic heritage.

A Littoral Reconstruction is a performance that attempts to retrace the physical and mental landscape of the incidents through a narration that combines material from a preliminary report drafted by the Ontario Human Rights Commission, press coverage, blogs, site visits, interviews, extracts from Ontario Tourism promotional literature, and Group Seven biographies. The narrative seeks to reconsider the landscape as a social and potentially nationalistic territory rather than a natural phenomenon that transcends cultural difference.

Exhibition history
A Littoral Reconstruction, The Power Plant, Toronto, curated by Helena Reckitt, 2008

Design by Thought Bubble Studios