Critical Writing Index

Geoffrey Pugen's vigilante women

by R.M. Vaughan

The Globe and Mail, Mar. 25, 2011

R.M. Vaughan writes about Geoffrey Pugen's solo show at the Museum of Contemporary Canadian Art and Dancing Through Time: Toronto’s Dance History From 1900 to 1980 at the St. Lawrence Market's Market Gallery. Pugen's short Sahara Sahara, which follows the violent escapades of a group of forest-dwelling young women, is described as a nod to 1970s grindhouse women's revenge films such as I Spit On Your Grave. Vaughan uses the article to reflect upon the current status of pastiche and intertextuality in film. He suggests that the well of irony may be exhausted, leaving filmmakers no choice but to celebrate and capitulate the tropes of action film rather than to mock or criticize their emptiness. Vaughan points to Dancing Through Time as a timely, critical and enjoyable exhibition that offers a glimpse into the cultural changes that have taken place over the last century in Toronto. The show proves its point through a large collection of "visual culture" including costumes, playbills, newspaper clippings, even the makeup box of a mid-centry dancer. Vaughan also offers capsule reviews of shows by James Gardner, Alysa-Beth Engel, and A. Shay Hahn.

ITEM 2011.003 – available for viewing in the Research Centre

Videos, Artworks and Artists Cited

Sahara SaharaGeoffrey Pugen