Ed Video Gallery, 40 Baker Street
August 7 – September 1, 2012
Reception - Saturday, September 1 starting at 8pmwith DJ Purple Chadillac spinning Chopped & Screwed music
curated by Aryen Hoekstra
Laura Anderson, Nadia Belerique, Maryanne Casasanta, Melissa Hamonic, Amy Lockhart, Jenine Marsh and Erica Mendritzki
An influential feature of the Houston hip hop scene since the early 1990’s is the wide spread use of a recreational drug which mixes pharmaceutical strength cough syrup - containing codeine and promethazine - with Sprite or Mountain Dew. When consumed, the drink - referred to as Purple Drank, Sizzurp, Lean, Drank, Barre, Purple Jelly or Texas Tea - produces a drowsy, euphoric state in the drinker often accompanied by slurred speech and the feeling of needing to lean over.
In an effort to emulate the "lean” of this high, Texas-based DJ Screw experimented with remixing the songs of fellow southern rappers by reducing the pitch of records, slowing them to between 60 – 70 beats per minute, while cutting two of the same, slowed records into one another producing a sound characterized by its choppy, repetitive drone that is now known as Chopped & Screwed.
Lean brings together artists whose work uses formal strategies including delay, repetition, and looping to adopt a posture that favours a slowed perceptual experience. The "lean” evoked by the work in this exhibition acts to disrupt expectations implied through their material and generic structures. In doing so, they share a formal language with DJ Screw’s remixes, while arguing for the deceleration of their consumption.