Club Gemini - JAMIE ROSS
Video installation artist (Montréal | Canada)
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Club Gemini (2019-2022)

 

Drawing from archival press clippings, letters, and spirit contact with queer ancestors, Jamie Ross’ sound installation Club Gemini grants a furtive glimpse into the eponymous first social club for lesbian, gay and trans people in Montreal, and its opening, one Saturday night in April 1969, before it was shut down a month later. Gemini was opened by International Sex Equality Anonymous, Quebec’s answer to the homophile civil rights movement, the international socialist precursor to the gay liberation movements of the ‘70s. Club Gemini is speculative history audio installation featuring possibly the only existant recording of the voice of one of the club’s founding members, Paul Bédard, who disappeared in Northern Quebec not long after the club closed, leaving only a letter to his two lovers.

 

In the winter of 1969, a small wolf pack crossed the frozen St. Lawrence River, likely at Lac St. Louis, and established itself on Mount Royal. On the same night Club Gemini opened at the base of the mountain, shots rang out. Montreal police officers had culled the wolves and removed their bodies from the gay cruising forest.

 

Today, a luxury pen boutique occupies the club’s former location. Its alley-way entrance is sealed.

 

Stereo audio track (00:29:00∞ loop), red light gel, black velvet cushions, black velvet mask, archival photograph, paper, resin

 

‡ Club Gemini, Centre Clark (Montreal, Canada) 2019
‡ Art Pop, Pop Montreal, Rialto Theatre (Montreal, Canada) 2019
Indexing Resistance, The Plumb (Toronto, Canada) 2022

 

Press
Journal La Presse (Montreal, Quebec)