Redevelopment: An Intervention Represented
Kathryn Walter's redevelopment intervention was displayed in the streets of Vancouver in November 1988. She appropriated phrases from Harlequin Romance novels and placed them as footnotes on twenty different development permit applications. The phrases carried stereotypical tones of male ownership and dominance of women which when juxtaposed with the permit signs create a parallel in power structures. The intervention was subtle yet effective in drawing attention to the permit signs as symbols of the economic oppression of many inner city neighbourhoods. By bringing the documentation of the project into the gallery we can focus on the piece as a whole and discuss the issues involved in development in Vancouver. Another instalment will be placed in the street during the exhibition.
"This project functions as a public intervention on the Development Permit Applications which appear throughout Vancouver. It involved the addition of a single phrase (footnote) to the bottom of twenty of these signs. By using carefully painted black letters on a white board the work becomes part of the existing sign while making a subtle comment on the capitalist encroachment that the applications represent. The phrases are taken from popular romantic fiction: a language which carries tones of ownership, possession and dominance. This text juxtaposed with the permit signs creates an appropriate parallel in power structures." - Kathryn Walter, "Development Intervention: A Series of 20 Signs," December, 1988.