Where it’s at

Beck and Al Hansen play with matches at the Agnes

Self Portrait by Al Hansen.
Image by: Deena Douara
Self Portrait by Al Hansen.

Although many may not have heard of the late Al Hansen, his grandson, Beck Hansen, is the Grammy award winning musician whose eccentric visual style is famous world wide.

The collaboration between the elder Hansen and his grandson, titled Playing with Matches, is currently on display at the Agnes Etherington Art Centre. Including both visual and video art, this collection showcases the artistry of both Hansens. The first section of Playing with Matches consists of a series of collages, sculptures, and photography, most of which features Al Hansen’s persistent motif of the goddess Venus. Both Hansens use objects most commonly thought of as garbage, such as chocolate bar wrappers and cigarette butts, as well as photography and other forms of media to demonstrate their shared aesthetic of “the beauty of things imperfect, impermanent, or incomplete”.

The second section of the display showcases documentary footage of Al Hansen’s performance art, interviews, and recent video footage by Beck and Los Angeles artist Tony Oursler. The video portions run for fifteen to twenty minutes, and are played throughout the day. Bibbe Hansen, Al’s daughter, and Channing Hansen, her son, will both be taking part in a reception and dialogue at the Agnes Etherington Art Centre on September 30th and October 1st. Channing Hansen will be performing Al Hansen’s Elegy for the Fluxus Dead. Admission for these special events is free, and Playing with Matches is free to Queen’s students.

Beck and Al Hansen: Playing with Matches is on display until October 8th.

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