Monday, July 28, 2014

Exhibit: Therapy is Fun + Free at the Sanatorium!

Toronto Art + Culture Exhibition Review

Heya! Last week I visited the Power Plant Contemporary Art Gallery at the Harbourfront Centre in Toronto to enjoy their newest exhibit Pedro Reyes: Sanatorium. This was the first time I visited this beautifully located museum, and after my initial visit, it will not be by last.

The Power Plant Contemporary Art Gallery at Harboufront Centre in Toronto, Melanie_ps, Culture, Exhibit, Exhibition, free, Ontrario, Canada

Pedro Reyes: Sanatorium Installation at The Power Plant Contemporary Art Gallery in Toronto, Harbourfront Centre, Culture, Exhibit, Exhibition, Artmatters, Melanie_Ps, The Purple Scrarf

The Power Plant Contemporary Art Gallery was founded in 1987, and is one of Canada's leading public art galleries "devoted to the presentation of contemporary art, artists and ideas through exhibitions, publications, talks, and events." And the Sanatorium installation is an event not to be missed. Created by Mexican artist Pedro Reyes, Sanatorium was first presented at The Guggenheim in New York, in 2011; and has since traveled the world. Now making its Canadian premiere, Pedro Reyes: Sanatorium asks visitors to participate in short 'therapy sessions' that are supposed to help cure ills that are associated with urban living. There are a 6 different therapy sessions that a visitor can sign up for, both group and individual sessions, which are delivered by a specially trained 'therapist'.

Visitor's secrets stored in glass bottles in the Cityleaks Therapy Session at Pedro Reyes: Sanatorium Installation at The Power Plant Contemporary Gallery, Harbourfront Centre, Toronto, Artmatters, Culture, Ontario, Canada, Melanie_Ps, The Purple Scarf, Exhibit, Exhibition
Visitor's secrets stored in glass bottles in the Cityleaks Session
The 3 dice for the Philosophiclal Casino Therapy Session at Pedro Reyes: Sanatorium Installation at The Power Plant Contemporary Gallery, Harbourfront Centre, Toronto, Artmatters, Culture, Ontario, Canada, Melanie_Ps, The Purple Scarf, Exhibit, Exhibition
The 3 dice for the Philosophical Casino Therapy Session
The answer to my question at Pedro Reyes: Sanatorium Installation at The Power Plant Contemporary Gallery, Harbourfront Centre, Toronto, Artmatters, Culture, Ontario, Canada, Melanie_Ps, The Purple Scarf, Exhibit, Exhibition, Albert Camus
The answer to my question??!!
The 4 sessions I participated in was Philosophical Casino, The Museum of Hypothetical Lifetimes, Cityleaks, and Vaccine Against Violence. In my Cityleaks session, I was asked to write down a deep dark secret on a piece of paper and place it in a bottle. I then took another bottle that holds a stranger's secret and read it out loud. I felt a sense of relief when I wrote down my secret and knowing that others have secrets of their own. The Philosophical Casino session was a group session where everyone in the group was asked to write down a question and place it in a box. The therapist then opened the box and read each person's question out loud. Whoever asked that question was then asked to roll a large oddly shaped dice that has quotes from famous philosophers on them. The quote that was rolled is supposed to answer the question. This activity was more fun than therapeutic for me, but it was interesting to see how the answers affected others in the group.

A dummy representation of the person who hurt me most in life in The Vaccine Against Violence Therapy Session at Pedro Reyes: Sanatorium Installation at The Power Plant Contemporary Gallery, Harbourfront Centre, Toronto, Artmatters, Culture, Ontario, Canada, Melanie_Ps, The Purple Scarf, Exhibit, Exhibition
A Dummy Representation of The person Who Hurt Me Most in the Vaccine Against Violence Session
Vaccine Against Violence Therapy Session at Pedro Reyes: Sanatorium Installation at The Power Plant Contemporary Gallery, Harbourfront Centre, Toronto, Artmatters, Culture, Ontario, Canada, Melanie_Ps, The Purple Scarf, Exhibit, Exhibition
My Vaccine (a.k.a Tic Tacs)
The Vaccine Against Violence Session was extremely therapeutic. I was asked to blow up a balloon and draw the face of the person who has hurt me most in my life. I then put the balloon in a headless dummy, and proceeded to kick the living day lights out of it and was encouraged to yell at the dummy. Afterwards, I was given a vaccine (in reality it was a Tic Tac) as a vaccine against violence. That therapy session was very cathartic and felt amazing!  My most emotional session was The Museum of Hypothetical Lifetimes. I was asked to select different objects from a large collection of knick knacks on the wall and place them in a  a sort of maze museum, where every section or space represents each moment of my life that has either happened or going to happen. This session was very emotional and I actually got teary eyed near the end. It made me think of past memories and moments, both good and bad, and future memories that will never happen or might happen.

Knick Knacks ready to go into my Museum of Hypothetical Lifetimes Therapy Session at Pedro Reyes: Sanatorium Installation at The Power Plant Contemporary Gallery, Harbourfront Centre, Toronto, Artmatters, Culture, Ontario, Canada, Melanie_Ps, The Purple Scarf, Exhibit, Exhibition

Knick Knacks ready to go into my Museum of Hypothetical Lifetimes Therapy Session at Pedro Reyes: Sanatorium Installation at The Power Plant Contemporary Gallery, Harbourfront Centre, Toronto, Artmatters, Culture, Ontario, Canada, Melanie_Ps, The Purple Scarf, Exhibit, Exhibition
My Finished Museum of Hypothetical Lifetimes
Knick Knacks ready to go into my Museum of Hypothetical Lifetimes Therapy Session at Pedro Reyes: Sanatorium Installation at The Power Plant Contemporary Gallery, Harbourfront Centre, Toronto, Artmatters, Culture, Ontario, Canada, Melanie_Ps, The Purple Scarf, Exhibit, Exhibition
My Finished Museum of Hypothetical Lifetimes
I have to admit, I was a little bit skeptical of how these therapy sessions would actually help me, but I found if I just let myself go and actually do what the therapist was asking me, I went on a fabulous emotional rollercoster ride. I felt relief, sadness, joy, apprehension, understanding, and finally peace. Suffice it to say I needed a drink after I left Sanatorium and walked the short distance to Steam Whistle to enjoy a cold beer. Pedro Reyes: Sanatorium runs until September 1, 2014. Please visit the Power Plant website for more details.

Have you visited the Sanatorium? Did you enjoy your therapy session? I would love to hear about your experience!

And P.s!: This exhibit is free! There are two other exhibitions running as well at The Power Plant and all three are free! There is also a free speaker series called Sunday Scene held every Sunday at 2pm.


P.s,
Melanie!

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