Title and statement of responsibility area
Centre for Experimental Art and Communication fonds
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Edition statement of responsibility
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Physical description area
10.18 m of textual records
ca. 50 cm of photographs : b&w ; 21 x 25 cm or smaller
ca. 1.5 m of slides : col and b&w ; 35 mm
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Archival description area
Name of creator
The Centre for Experimental Art and Communication (CEAC) was created in Toronto in 1975 by the Kensington Arts Association, an avant-garde artists collective. The Centre acted as a studio, resource centre, museum, gallery and performance space for the collective. It also acted as the host for visiting acts and artists in the areas of performance art, behaviour workshops, contextualism, visual arts (especially video art) and other post-modern art forms. The CEAC collective also produced events which were showcased in Europe, the United States, South America and, to a lesser extent, Canada. The Centre was the sight of 'Crash and burn,' a punk-rock musical venue in the mid-1970s. The Centre alienated funding bodies in the late 1970s when a copy of 'Strike', a journal associated with CEAC, was charged with promoting violent overthrow of authority, and CEAC was forced to close in 1980.
Scope and content
The fonds consists of printed material, correspondence, photographs, slides, and related material of the Centre for Experimental Art and Design. The correspondence includes: correspondence with artists, galleries and other arts groups in Canada and overseas, dealing with CEAC exhibitions, CEAC-sponsored travelling shows, and communications concerning gallery events. There is also material dealing with granting agencies, including the Ontario Arts Council and the Canada Council. Also included is correspondence relating to the OCA and CC decisions to suspend funding to CEAC, letters of reaction from CEAC members and supporters. The fonds also has grant proposals and covering documentation, and other material. The fonds also contains various documents written by members of the collective defining the 'new ideology' which would usurp the cultural and political elites, define a post-modern aesthetic. There is also material on related artistic and intellectual ideas. There are newspaper clippings of CEAC events and exhibitions both from Canadian and foreign newspapers, invitations to events, flyers and other announcements of forthcoming events, and clippings about other performance and avant-garde arts in other cities and countries. The photographs and slides concern performances at CEAC, including material related to 'Crash and burn'.
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Script of material
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Restrictions on access
No restrictions on access.
Terms governing use, reproduction, and publication
A PDF file list is attached to this description.
The fonds comprises the following accessions: 1981-010, 1994-027. Further accruals may be expected.
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Dates of creation, revision and deletion
2002/04/04 Jizi Chen:. Word Perfect (Creation)
2002/04/04 Awaiting review by the Data Collection Archivist
2003/04/16 Shannon MacDonald. Add URL for online finding aid. Updated wording in accruals, access restrictions.
2012/05/07 Anna St.Onge. Corrected some info in admin history Created link to 1981-010 accession.
2014/07/22 Migrated to AtoM
2019/06/09 J. Grant. Published fonds-level description. Added PDF file list for accession 1981-010. Published descriptions for 1994-027.