Updated May 1, 2013: We hope you’ll be able to make it tonight for the launch, but if you can’t, the book is now available for purchase online.

On Wednesday May 1, 2013 (International Workers’ Day) at 8pm UNIT/PITT Projects is pleased to host the publication launch for Rereading The Riot Act, And On – Vancouver 2011 by author/curator Anakana Schofield and artist Jeremy Isao Speier. (Update 24 April 2013, 7pm: congratulations to Anakana for winning the Amazon.ca First Novel Award!)


Rereading The Riot Act is an ongoing interrogation of the historical events of April 23, 1935 — when Mayor Gerry McGeer read the Riot Act to the relief camp protesters, their families and supporters gathered at Victory Square.

Rereading The Riot Act, And On — Vancouver 2011 is an artists’ book from Schofield and Isao Speier, based on source materials compiled for Schofield’s 2011 curatorial project, Rereading The Riot Act. Part scrapbook, part research diary, this new book uses the 1935 reading of the Riot Act to unemployed workers and their families as a frame to examine Vancouver’s history of public protest.

Prior to this publication two events were held in 2011 under the name Rereading The Riot Act, including: Rereading The Riot Act I: A Public Action which occurred as a protest march in and around 16 E. Hastings on April 23 in the hopes to re-inscribe Vancouver’s history of labour struggle and mass protest. The second event, Rereading The Riot Act II: Performance Cabaret, was presented at the late Waldorf Hotel on June 15, 2011 and coincidentally occurred during the same evening as the Stanley Cup Riots. The performance cabaret presented four performance and visual artists that featured expanded responses to both the events of April 23, 1935 and the reenactment event that took place in Vancouver on April 23rd 2011.

Rereading The Riot Act, And On includes images documenting some of the works and performances presented in 2011: a collage of history, drawing on pamphlets, news clippings, photographs, first-person accounts, and official correspondence to produce an unconstrained, non-linear act of re-reading.


UNIT/PITT is pleased to bring this new book to the public. Printed and bound by Publication Studio Vancouver, it will be produced on-demand in short runs. The first copies will be available at the launch event on May 1st, 2013; they will be available afterward through UNIT/PITT, online at www.unitpitt.ca, and in selected outlets where artists’ books are sold.

Anakana Schofield is an Irish-Canadian writer of fiction, essays, and literary criticism. She contributes to the London Review of Books blog, The Recorder: The Journal of the American Irish Historical Society, the Globe & Mail, and the Vancouver Sun. She has lived in London and Dublin, and now resides in Vancouver. Her first novel, Malarky, was published in 2012 and has been acclaimed by critics as well as being shortlisted for the Ethel Wilson Fiction Award and winning the Amazon.ca First Novel Award. The winner for the Amazon.ca First Novel Award will be announced later today in Toronto, Ontario.

Jeremy Isao Speier is a Japanese-Canadian Vancouver-based interdisciplinary artist who graduated from Emily Carr College of Art & Design in 1992. He works in film/video, kinetic sculpture and sound, and installation. He has exhibited extensively across Canada in numerous solo and group exhibitions, and recently in 2011 at Blim Arts Society and Powell Street Festival, in 2012 at the Firehall Arts Centre, and forthcoming in 2013 at Nikkei National Museum & Cultural Centre with an exhibition catalogue, Double Zero: The Point Between Future Past (2013). www.jeremyisaospeier.com

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