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Wendy DesChene is Art Pirate

Canadian artist Wendy DesChene graduated with an MFA in Painting from Tyler School of Art and immediately incorporated materials that would support her activist inspired works. Weary of the limitations placed on art by institutions, she began to invite audience participation into her installations. The outcome was a collaborative community exhibition titled WYSIWYG that toured to 11 different communities, including the Art League of Houston, Minnesota State University, the Art Academy of Cincinnati, and The Henry Street Settlement of New York.  Other collaborative-based projects have been presented at the Soap Factory and Tomio Koyama Gallery of Japan. Wendy is the recipient of several fellowships including being twice awarded a Canada Council, Travel Grant. Her recent collaborative work as PlantBot Genetics, with artist Jeff Schmuki, has been awarded NEA and Pulitzer Foundation Grants for exhibitions and/or programming at the Carnegie Museum of Art in Pittsburgh, The Goethe Institute in Egypt, the Bach Modern in Austria, the New Gallery of Canada, and Marfa Dialogues occurring in St. Louis. 


Wendy continues to critique art world structures, systems, and protocols, through interventionist strategies that include the placing works on the street or within institutions without permission. Using projectors, stickers, art liberation tactics, and videos she has commandeered the worlds most prestigious art institutions as her studio and target. Documented work from her "Unauthorized Series" has been exhibited in numerous international exhibitions including the Sanlun Yishu Project in Beijing, China, The Ice Box Project Space in Philadelphia, PA, and the International Center for Art and Design in Albuquerque, New Mexico.


Painting and drawings from her various bodies of work have shown at the Drawing Center in New York, the McColl Center for Art and Innovation in Charlotte, NC, and other well-regarded venues.  She has completed many international residency programs, including The American Academy in Rome, Jentel in Wyoming, I-Park in Connecticut, Pouch Cove in Canada, the Hafnarborg Art Museum in Reykjavik Iceland, The Atlantic Center for the Arts in FL, KulttuuriKauppila Art Center in Finland, Buitenwerkplats in the Netherlands, Studios of Key West in FL and St. Norbert’s College in WI. In 2018 she created public programs as a resident artist at the Lakkos Art Center in Greece.

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