Public Parking
A journal for storytelling, arguments, and discovery through tangential conversations.
“I like to think there are alternatives”: in conversation with Theo Jean Cuthand
Monday, June 10, 2024 | Gabrielle Willms
Theo Jean Cuthand’s videos are full of good lines, but there’s no time to dwell on them. They’re delivered without pause, almost matter of factly, in unhurried monologues that span the video’s run time. In 'Extractions' (2019), he describes the terrifying lumber scrap incinerator in Merritt, where he spent four intolerable months as a teen, “like something in a Disney movie symbolizing death and anguish.” Earlier, over footage of a series of explosions in an open pit mine, he notes benignly, “I like to think there are alternatives.” In Less Lethal Fetishes (2019), he uses gas masks to meditate on kink culture and the art world’s toxic relationship with industry. As the video concludes, Cuthand laments the loss of a “simpler time” when he could just appreciate the “horny joy of watching a woman wearing a gas mask while in bondage” and not consider its political implications. 
Extractive Implication and Potlatch as Method: in conversation with Tsēmā Igharas
Thursday, May 26, 2022 | Gabrielle Willms
Last summer, I biked to Point Douglas, an eclectic, old Winnipeg neighbourhood dotted with stately historical buildings and defunct industrial sites, to find Tsēmā Igharas’ installation, Tailings Pool. Housed on an empty lot, the piece seemed, from a distance, to be a large, nondescript pile of gravel, not unlike the rubble of a construction site. But as I approached, the smooth, angled sides of the mound came into focus, and a jaunty neon yellow swimming ladder revealed itself, straddling the edge. Climbing up to look in, I found a bean-shaped pool of tantalizing blue, glinting in the dry heat, noxious yet seductive.