Taken from BOXCARSIX’s exhibition at the Ministry of Casual Living in July of 2019, where the art was first unveiled. (Provided by Clare Thomas)

Victoria storefronts transform into ‘squishy, pink’ human insides art installation

Six storefronts on Douglas Street have been turned into art

While some window fronts house handbags and shoes, one on Douglas Street holds something a little more “squishy and pink.”

The Inside (we are all) storefront is one of six art installations from the city’s Storefront Victoria Exhibition Program, all of which are located in the 700-block of Douglas Street.

BOXCARSIX, a feminist artist collective made up of eight women from the ages of 30 to 60, are the masterminds behind the storefront.

“We started brainstorming about what inside means,” says Clare Thomas. “… and then thinking about how to have an inside you have to have an outside … we make barriers in society that keep people or social groups out of places.”’

READ ALSO: Driver charged after SUV smashes into Vancouver Island storefront

Something that connects us all, is the way our insides look, explained Thomas, adding that those insides usually tend to be pink.

“We wanted to create something, a physical embodiment of the thing all humans share,” she says.

Thomas describes the cluster of plush pink items housed in the window as soft and squishy, that people will either love or hate. The group deliberately used fabric that would be found in people’s home such as a fluffy robe or the bed “sheets your granny had.”

The storefront consists of hundreds of soft, hand-sewn, stuffed fabric sculptures of both anatomically correct and imagined bodily organs, cells and microbes.

READ ALSO: City of Victoria calls on artists to help fill empty storefronts

“We chose things which, at first glance, just look like a whole lot of body bits but then you look closely and they’re made from fabrics from your childhood,” she says. “On the one hand, you get this familiarity feeling, but also a slight feeling of ickiness.”

This is the second iteration of the project, which was originally unveiled at the Ministry of Casual Living, a non-profit society that exhibited works of art on Haultain Street until 2012 and now runs two studios in Esquimalt and on Millie’s Lane.

“People react in two ways,” says Thomas, explaining how there are those that love it and want to touch everything and hang out in the space. “Some people said I can’t bear it.”

The program saw a number of submissions and artists were assessed on concept, execution and how their exhibit appeals to a diverse audience.

Along with Thomas, Mary Babineau, Celine Berry, Joanne Hewko, Jessica Jean, Kuyper Fernlong all took part in the creation.

“This has been a huge validation of our work,” says Thomas. “We’re just really happy to do something that makes the neighbourhood a little more fun.”



kendra.crighton@blackpress.ca

Follow us on Instagram
Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

 

BOXCARSIX, a feminist artist collective made up of eight women from the ages of 30 to 60, designed the “squishy, pink” storefront. (Provided by Clare Thomas)

Just Posted

Province asks health-care staff to be ‘vigilant’ in screening for possible coronavirus cases

This comes after U.S. health officials confirmed a case of the virus in Washington State

Homes fit for royals for sale in North Saanich

Prince Harry and Meghan Markle have returned to Greater Victoria

Gold Rush star dons Lucky Lager shirt in latest episode

Brennan Ruault, originally from Invermere, joined the show in the sixth season

VIDEO: Dashcam records near-miss by bad driver near Sooke

Driver crossed four lanes of traffic and back over again, barely missing three other vehicles

VIDEO: Protesters block entrance to Victoria government building to support Wet’suwet’en First Nation

Activists want Wet’suwet’en Hereditary Chiefs demands to be upheld, observed and respected

Boy, 13, arrested after alleged assault involving girl at B.C. middle school

Boy alleged to have used ‘inappropriate levels of force’ to injure the girl

B.C. player becomes only second Canadian to enter Hall of Fame of Baseball

Walker received 76.6 percent of the Baseball Writers of America Association vote

PHOTOS: Heavy snowfall breaks window, causing avalanche into B.C. newsroom office

It was a chaotic start to the week for the Kitimat Northern Sentinel

Canadian law firm launches class action on behalf of Iran flight victims

Flight 752 was shot down by Iran shortly after take off

Mission Hill cellarman fired after mistakenly dumping $162K of wine down the drain

The former employee filed a grievance with the West Kelowna winery but was unsuccesful

Police suspect foul play in Cowichan Tribes death

Police are looking at foul play in relation to a death on… Continue reading

Hospital patient pleads guilty to dumbbell assault of nurse in Abbotsford

Neale Heath admits to assault causing bodily harm in attack last September

Most Read