Persona Volare 2000
Persona Volare kicked off the millennium with this exhibition in November 2000. Self-titled, The exhibition occupied a third floor office space at 517 College Street, Suite 327, in Toronto, Ontario.
A straggly, drab grouping of offices, all leading off a central hallway gave us the perfect opportunity to infiltrate and invert the conventions of the day-to-day grind. Coincidently, there were twelve offices and twelve artists, with a generous front room for "reception." These rooms, averaging not more than 150 square feet or 12 square metres, carpeted, and often window-less, cried out for character. We rose to the challenge.
Johannes Zits decorated, Lisa Neighbour destroyed, Reid Diamond narrated, Chantal Rousseau gyrated while John Dickson cursed. There was hard labour, gossip, intellectual consideration, daydreaming, soul searching and foul-play by Brian Hobbs, Carlo Cesta, Lorna Mills, Kate Wilson, David Acheson, Rebecca Diederichs and Michael Davey.
Jenifer Papararo, in her essay An Arbitrary Fit, claims that "Although place seems to be the most overt and easiest link to identify within this exhibition, the members of Persona Volare have not come to this temporary site, in order to address the politics of the area or to reveal a hidden history about the building". But in the end the art did, unintentionally, respond to the aura characteristic of office machinations.