Unpacking the MASH-UP

In one epic exhibition, the Vancouver Art Gallery explores the history of the remix, from Marcel Duchamp to Danger Mouse.

For the epic exhibition “MashUp: The Birth of Modern Culture,” on view through June 12 at the Vancouver Art Gallery, the word [Mash-UP] has been wisely adopted to cover all the “mixing, blending and reconfiguration of existing materials (sounds, images, objects, events) to produce a new outcome,” writes VAG senior curator Bruce Grenville in the show’s dynamic catalogue. This game-changing mode of creativity has been driving avant-garde cultural production since the early 20th century, Grenville notes, but “MashUp” is the first major exhibition ever to cover the subject in such depth, or to put a name to it, for that matter.

A mind-blowing mash-up itself, the exhibition is the most ambitious the VAG has ever organized, filling all four floors of the museum’s building with nearly 400 works by more than 150 artists, designers, architects, filmmakers and musicians.

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