Everybody Needs Everyone’s Help Right Now

Solidarity - Kathe KollwitzWe need your help — please donate to UNIT/PITT now, and please consider supporting some of the many great organizations in our neighbourhood with an equivalent donation.

We’re making a last-minute request — if you have considered donating to the Pitt, if you think our risk-taking programming and commitment to emerging artists and emerging practices is worth supporting, you have until midnight on December 31st to receive a tax receipt for your online donation.

We also know that our friends are receiving dozens of requests for money right now, and that many of the causes and organizations making those requests do vitally important work. That’s why we are suggesting that when you donate to us, you also donate to someone else in Vancouver’s Chinatown and Downtown Eastside neighbourhoods. In our earlier messages, we asked you to support the Overdose Prevention Society, who are saving lives every day, and to the Downtown Eastside Neighbourhood House, who help provide nutritious food to some of our neighbours. We’d also like to add to this list our friends at the Chinatown Concern Group, who are working through the Carnegie Community Centre to protect the low-income residents of Chinatown who are the life of the community.

You may not have much money to spare. We understand. We live and work in Vancouver and are being squeezed by the same forces that are causing economic chaos and deprivation across the city. But your ten or twenty or fifty dollars helps immensely, especially if you are able to make a small monthly donation (they’re easy to set up using our CanadaHelps page).

Thanks for your support this year. Here’s to more lives being saved, people being fed, seniors’ housing being saved, and more art that you wouldn’t be able to see anywhere else. And as artists working in and around this community, we have a responsibility to show solidarity with people doing good work all around us. Let’s all continue to help each other in 2017.

Donate now to UNIT/PITT. Donate to Overdose Prevention Society. Donate to the DTES Neighbourhood House. Donate to the Chinatown Concern Group. 

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Join the Action

Donate now to support UNIT/PITT. While you’re doing that, please also donate to the Downtown Eastside Neighbourhood House.

It has been an amazing year at the Pitt: we did almost twice as much programming — exhibitions, talks, screenings, performance than what we do in a typical year. At the same time, we are being squeezed by the same property tax increases that are making longstanding neighbourhood businesses shut their doors.

Even a small donation helps. Please consider helping us right now, or setting up a small monthly donation if that suits you better (it’s easy to do, just select “donate monthly” on our CanadaHelps page and follow the steps).

We’re situated in a neighbourhood with a lot of urgent needs and a lot of people and organizations doing their best to meet those needs. If you donate to the Pitt, please also consider donating something to the Downtown Eastside Neighbourhood House, which feeds a lot of people and educates the public through initiatives like the Right to Food zine.

Donate now to UNIT/PITT. Donate now to the DTES Neighbourhood House.

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Last week of Corbin Union: Inversus Mundi

Thanks to everyone who has come by so far to see Corbin Union: Inversus Mundi. In case you haven’t seen it yet, the exhibition runs until Saturday, December 17th. After that, we will be closed until mid-January.

Watch our site for announcements of upcoming events and exhibitions—you can also subscribe to our mailing list or follow us on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram. Thank you for your support in 2016!

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Self-Indulgence at this Time is Helping the Enemy

self-indulgence… but we’re going to ask you to indulge us briefly to read this message.

This is a plea for your support. You’re going to get a lot of these in the next month or so, from a lot of different organizations, who all need your support. If you’re inclined, please consider a one-time or monthly donation to UNIT/PITT, so that we can continue supporting new and underexposed artists, so that we can keep our studio rents low, so that we can continue to pay artists fairly, and so that the Pitt can keep going well past its 41st year. It’s easy to donate to us through CanadaHelps.

We realize that there are a lot of worthy organizations and causes out there that need your support too. This is why we’re asking you to contribute to a group that is doing valuable work in our neighbourhood, the Overdose Prevention Society. Please consider dividing whatever you were going to donate, so that part of your support goes to the Pitt and part of it goes to ODS (we think 50/50 would be good, but it’s up to you).

Every little bit helps. If you have twenty bucks, we’re not going to turn our noses up at it, or half of it, and neither will they. We’re all under fire here from austerity, gentrification, looming environmental and societal disaster, and the culture-war fallout from the US election, and we appreciate you standing with us.

Don’t aid the enemy. Donate now. Donate now to UNIT/PITT. Donate now to Overdose Prevention Society.

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Musik Klub 5: Culture War! Edition

screen-shot_MusikKlub5Thank you to all of you who joined us for the riveting premiere of Musik Klub’s second season, beginning with the Culture War! Edition. Stay tuned for upcoming screenings featuring a number of themes attempting to make some sense of current times. In the meantime, check out the playlists compiled by Jamie Ward below.

“For this screening, we’ll get in the the mud as the US scrambles towards election, Britain sweats out its EU referendum, and Europe’s nerves tingle from a rise in far right politics. Misogyny, authoritarianism, racism…we’ve smelled it before, and risen up in kind. Tonight we’ll look at how music and video in the waning days of the Cold War gave voice to radicalized frustration, creating new models for resistance and new visions for hope, boiled up in wicked fashion. Music is the answer, music is our saviour.”



Past Editions: Musik Klub: TV Party Edition, Musik Klub 2: Selectors Special Edition, Musik Klub 3: Phase Induction Edition, and Musik Klub: Good Times Ahead Edition with Penny Jo Buckner.

MUSIK KLUB is a video screening series organized and hosted by Jamie Ward and is intended to use the music video as a vehicle for critique, but with a nod to the tradition of classic variety hours such as Beat Club, Old Grey Whistle Test, Top Pop & Musikladen. Video performances are sourced from a variety of international television music programs, scopitones and promotionals broadcast or created between 1965 & 1995. Come out, drink refreshing beverages, hang with friends and listen to (and watch) some great music. Ends early so you can keep the night going; it’s like happy hour for adventurous music & video fan-fiends.

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Final days of Joseph Staples: Garden of Paradise

Garden of Paradise 02

There are less than two weeks left to see Joseph Staples’ exhibition, Garden of Paradise. Come by now through October 22 to watch Staples’ series of mesmerizing, collaged GIFS.

UNIT/PITT Projects is open Tuesday through Saturday, noon to 5pm at 236 East Pender Street. See you soon!

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Fall 2016 at the Pitt starts on Friday, September 9

Garden of ParadiseWe’re now mostly recovered from the intense year of programming that was the 2055 Project, and this summer’s T.A.Z. and Chinatown Maps events, and we’re getting ready to launch another year of exhibitions, talks, screenings, and everything else.

We’re starting fall 2016 with Joseph Staples: Garden of Paradise, a compelling and strange exhibition of video loops, curated by Associate Director Jamie Ward. It will be opening during the latest edition of SWARM, a city-wide festival of artist-run culture.

The opening is not the only thing we’re doing on Friday the 9th. SWARM can be busy and sometimes loud, so instead of a loud, frantic after party, we’re inviting you to come to the Pitt after 10 to UNSWARM with music by Zen Finger and Hazy, as we turn our exhibition space into decompression zone.

Later in the fall we’ll be presenting the just-announced exhibition Atrum Fortuna by the artists of Corbin Union, and we’ll be announcing our schedule of other events as they get closer. For now, we’ll see you on September 9th.

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Looking back at 2055

2015-16 was UNIT/PITT’s 40th anniversary. At various points in its history, it seemed unlikely that the Pitt would survive to see its 40th year. (And if you want to know more about all of that, Allison Collins wrote a great recap of our history back in 2012.) Since we had already looked back at the Pitt’s history, we decided to do something different, and start with the premise that we weren’t marking an end-point of 40 years, but a mid-point on the way to the Pitt’s 80th year in 2055.

Exhibitions and programs for this year were put together by a temporary curatorial team: Mariane Bourcheix-Laporte, Kay Higgins, Abbey Hopkins, Brynn McNab, Catherine de Montreiul,  Gabriel Saloman, Jamie Ward, and Zebulon Zang. Artists who participated in exhibitions, panels, music nights, and talks included Elaine Carol, Elliot Heintzmann, Joël Doyle, Eli Zibin, Curtis AuCoin, Terry Hunter, Cecily Nicholson, Michael Clague, Andrea Creamer, Laiwan, Brady Cranfield, Rachel and Sarah Seburn, Pietro Sammarco, The Rita, Graeme Wahn, Monique Levesque, Cole Nowicki, Alison Braid, Alyssa Dusevic, Jordan Abel, bill bissett, Danielle LaFrance, Donato Mancini, sidony o’neal, Anahita Jamali Rad, The Third Thing, Alana Gerecke, Alexa Mardon, Jacquelyn Ross, Carolina Bergonzoni, Justine Chambers, Alex Mah, Lee Su-Feh, Evann Siebens, Hong Kong Exile, Deanna Peters, Justin Langlois, Penny Jo Buckner, Matt Hern, Mark DeLong, Dream the Combine, M. Rattray & Eloise, Skeena Reece, prOphecy sun, Irwin Oostindie, and possibly some others I’m missing right now. Contributors of material to the Limited Time Library project included Brit Bachman, Brick Press, Tommy Chain, Gabi Dao, Stefana Fratila, Steffanie Ling, Emma Metcalfe-Hurst, Lauren Lavery, Cole Nowicki, Jeff O’Brien, Penny Library, Lyndsay Pomerantz, Dan Pon, Jasmine Sacharuk, Ellis Sam, Graeme Wahn, Tom Whalen, and SP Yoon. We would also like to thank Bridgette Badowich, who was doing a co-op with us during much of this madness.

Our audience was bigger than ever before: counting web-based projects and Monique Levesque’s 6-week-long public art project, our audience was probably more than 20,000 people. But we also call something a success if a dozen people show up for a really productive discussion about the how artist-run communities relate to the other communities around us, which is what happened with the Art and Community Reading Group series.

After a bit of a break, we will be changing a few things for fall 2016 and beyond — the day the Pitt stops changing and gets predictable is the day we might as well find jobs selling real estate.


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Why Am I Afraid To Love hits the streets of Vancouver

why-am-i-afraid-to-love-in-situ-detailStreet posters, up until end of February
Artist’s talk and Valentine’s Day reception, Saturday February 13, 7pm
Installation in UNIT/PITT Reading Room until February 27

If you’re seeing some intriguing messages on your local poster kiosk, there’s an explanation. Monique Levesque’s work Why Am I Afraid To Love? is now available for viewing all around Vancouver, at random times and places, as part of the rough-and-tumble rotation of posters that season our urban landscape.

The project, curated by independent curator and writer Brynn McNab, opens the artist’s personal journals and texts to the public, producing a bracing collision of intimacy and anonymity.

Why Am I Afraid To Love? is also on view in the reading room of UNIT/PITT Projects, where the artist and curator will host a Valentine’s Day party and artist’s talk on Saturday, February 13 at 7pm; the Pitt will also publish a book version of Why Am I Afraid To Love?, available at the event.

Monique Levesque was raised in the Canadian prairies by two people whose love story has proved impossible to live up to, or replicate. In 2011 Levesque acquired a BFA from Emily Carr University. Working in alignment with the history of performance in various media, she has since dedicated her work to the pursuit of the romantic comedy.

Brynn McNab graduated with a BFA in Critical and Cultural Studies from Emily Carr University by way of Film Production from NSCAD University. Since then, her work has included writing, curating and editing, including the relaunch of ISSUE magazine in 2014. She is currently interested in an expanded field of writing, which incorporates casual correspondence and co-production.

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January at UNIT/PITT: Graeme Wahn, Monique Levesque, Musik Klub 3

january-2016We’re getting ready to start 2016 at UNIT/PITT. Look for Graeme Wahn’s exhibition Mother Hastings Time Capsule, opening Friday, January 15; Monique Levesque’s public project Why Am I Afraid To Love?, beginning at the same time and building up to a reception on February 13; and a new edition of Musik Klub on Friday, January 8.

All events are at UNIT/PITT, 236 East Pender Street. You can bring your friends. Regular gallery hours are noon to 5pm, tuesday through Saturday, starting on the 16th.

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