Yuula Benivolski is a multidisciplinary artist living and working between Toronto and Montreal. A MFA graduate from Concordia University, her shows and projects include ONGIARA (with Geoffrey Pugen) for Trinity Square Video (Toronto), Migrant Creatures for Les Territoires (Montreal) and Mythologies for Format Festival (Adelaide, Australia). She recently co-curated Young Blood for Nuit Blanche Montréal and the New Toronto Works Show for Pleasure Dome. Her main points of interest are migration, tradition, ritual, survival, and transformation. This Saturday, Benivolski will collaborate with Jennifer Castle on an outdoor installation/performance project titled Falling as part of the Wippersnapper/ALL CAPS summer festival on the Toronto Island.
1. Old Skool
Best house ever: I currently live on Toronto Island in an old school building. It was converted into studio and living spaces by Artscape. I share the building with fifteen to twenty-five people (depending on the season) and it's the most communal situation we've all ever lived in, for better or worse (I love you guys!). We have a big garden, apple trees, a houseboat, a double-decker wooden raft, a sweat lodge, bonfires, nudity, a house cat who loves "taking care" of mice, a creepy crawl space, a haunted lighthouse, and the lake is our back yard. In the winter we have to engage in fun group activities because the vibe here is sort of like The Shining once the sun goes down at 4pm. I warmly recommend this place for everyone. (Please don't try to move in if you don't like to do dishes.)
2. Miso Coleslaw
Introduced to me by Zeesy Powers. Easy to make: lots of red cabbage, thinly sliced white onion, grated carrots, sliced apples, grated ginger, toasted sesame seeds, some parsley or other herbs you might like for garnish. I like dill. For the dressing you mix oil, light vinegar, honey, and lemon juice, and then add miso paste. It's the most delicious summer snack that tastes even better if you leave it in the fridge overnight. I recently added some tahini to the mix and it blew my mind. Also, unrelated: watermelon salad. Holy shit. Who knew?!
3. Skid Boat
This summer my friends acquired a thirty-foot wooden houseboat. It was previously refurbished using crappy wood (to be used as a prop on a movie set) and the cabin rotted off. It was cheap. We fixed it up and now we take it out to watch the sunset over by the airport and swim at the nude beach. The boat's name is “The Girlfriend". The funnest part of taking it out is watching all the slick yuppies coasting along the lagoon with babes in bikinis on board dancing to shitty funk house and then there's us smiling so hard and looking like we haven't showered in a week. Our safety lights are so cheap we have to duct tape them to the front railing. Who cares, everyone's just happy to be in the middle of the lake!
Reading the news suddenly gets me daydreaming about government buildings burning and getting into fistfights with the police (daydreams only, stay calm). It's a very effective way of keeping one distracted from work.
Faves: my sister Xenia, We Are Water vid for HEALTH (dir. by Eric Wareheim), Besatt for Avner (dir. by Jenny Palen), Houellebecq, Songs Of Man by One Hundred Dollars, House of Balloons by The Weeknd, We Must Become The Pitiless Censors Of Ourselves by John Maus, In Evening Air by Future Islands. I like to jog to Black Flag, the Replacements, and Prince. Fav artists this week: Petra Cortright, Morley Shayuk, Brad Tinmouth, Alfred Boman, Martha Rosler, Marlaina Read, Dan Siney, Megan May Daalder, Artur Zmijewski. I'd like to watch the movie Bridesmaids.
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