Kenzie Housego’s exhibition I❤️U blends embroidery with digital technologies to explore how flirting and courtship have changed over time. I❤️U simultaneously investigates the social meanings of flowers, embroidery patterns and emojis in text and sexts. Her textile-based practice combines technological components to create interactive works that both sense and communicate with visitors to the exhibition. Some of the work in the exhibition will react when visitors come close to them and others have phone numbers that you can text. The artwork highlights how romantic communication is coded, transmitted, interpreted, and misinterpreted via technology.
Organized by the Art Gallery of Alberta and curated by Lindsey Sharman. With the support of RBC Foundation, the RBC New Works Gallery was created to support the Art Gallery of Alberta’s commitment to promoting Alberta’s emerging artists.
Kenzie Housego recently completed a Master of Fine Art specializing in new media at the University of Calgary, Mohkinstsis, in Treaty 7 region southern Alberta. As a multidisciplinary artist her practice includes fibre, embroidery, new media, and assemblage mediums. The use of technology such as LEDs, Arduino micro-controllers, texting, and screens within her research is symbolic of the virtual realms in which we participate as a society. The virtual encompasses social media platform activity, online personas, online dating, and online branding. The digital world has become ubiquitous in communication, shaping contemporary society, particularly in relation to online representation.
It's important to her that her artwork always offers an invitation for interactivity, encouraging viewers to shift from passive observers to active co-producers as they engage with the digital media, experience other points of view, and ultimately, form their own individual meanings. I❤️U explores contemporary courtship, romance, technology and historical signs and signifiers connected to dating and romance.
Housego has had the opportunity to showcase her art nationally and internationally at Beakerhead festival in Calgary, CURRENTS festival, Santa Fe New Mexico, Rome MakerFaire, MakerFaire Bay Area in California, Fashionwear New York, CES Vegas, Xiamen Fashion Week, China, CES ASIA, Shanghai, China, Dublin Ireland, and at a two-week art residency in Shenzhen, China.
Housego currently lives and practices in Calgary, Alberta.