Project Dates:
June 16, 2014
July 06, 2014

subway platform screens across the TTC

Toronto, Canada

Relationship by Zackary Drucker and Rhys Ernst – WorldPride – June 2014

PATTISON Onestop celebrates WorldPride Toronto 2014 with a special presentation of Relationship, a series of 45-second slideshows revealing intimate snapshots depicting the arc of the real-life love story of transgender couple, Zackary Drucker and Rhys Ernst. From June 16 – July 6, 2014, Relationship will appear once every 10 minutes on PATTISON Onestop subway platform screens across the city reaching over one million commuters. Relationship is a WorldPride 2014 Major Partner Event, and is part of PATTISON’s ongoing Art in Transit programme.

Relationship is a record of the transgender couple during a period when their bodies were transitioning in opposite directions (for Drucker from male to female, and for Ernst from female to male), offering an intimate voyeuristic view into their private relationship. These photographs convey a specific time and place – the sexuality of two people in love and living in Los Angeles, who have opted for a non-operative transition into an altered gender existence on hormones.

The project, which was a highlight of the recent Whitney Biennial, has been covered by major art and news outlets from Flash Art to the New York Times. Toronto subway commuters will see an edit of Relationship that includes 40 photographs taken by Zackary Drucker and Rhys Ernst from 2008-2013. Collectively the photographs in Relationship become a cinematic version of the couple’s romantic and creative collaboration, simultaneously fact and fiction, revealing the pair as self-consciously and conspicuously presenting themselves, offering autobiography as ambiguity and unravelling identity as a construction.

WorldPride is an opportunity to continue breaking down stereotypes, pushing boundaries, and expanding our capacity for acceptance and understanding. It’s my hope that by presenting a Trans* love story to millions of people on the subway screens, we are contributing to the ethos and energy of WorldPride 2014.”  ~ Sharon Switzer, National Arts Programmer and Curator, PATTISON Onestop.

You can never underestimate the power of seeing yourself reflected in art and how important that is to a feeling of belonging. WorldPride 2014 Toronto will showcase a rich range of LGBTQ art and voices from across the world in a once-in-a-lifetime event. We are delighted to partner with PATTISON’s Art in Transit programme to bring this important exhibition to Toronto and citywide visibility to Trans* communities.”    ~ Chrystal Dean, WorldPride Manager.

Relationship is curated by Jean-Paul Kelly, Lori Newdick, and Sharon Switzer. Artwork courtesy of Luis De Jesus Los Angeles.

Artist Bios

Rhys Ernst is a filmmaker and artist who works across narrative and experimental film, photography, animation, and mixed-media, utilizing various forms and modalities to investigate masculinity, transgender identity and the intersection of gender and narrative construction. Ernst received his MFA in Film/ Video at CalArts in 2011 and a BA from Hampshire College in 2004. His MFA thesis film THE THING premiered at Sundance 2012 and his collaborative film with Zackary Drucker, SHE GONE ROGUE,premiered at the 2012 “Made in LA” Los Angeles Biennial at the Hammer Museum. Past screening venues include Oberhausen, Ann Arbor Film Festival, Chicago International Film Festival, the Chicago Museum of Contemporary Art, Brooklyn Academy of Music, and in Los Angeles at UCLA Hammer Museum, REDCAT, and LACE. He lives in Los Angeles.

Zackary Drucker earned an MFA from the California Institute of the Arts in 2007 and a BFA from the School of Visual Arts in 2005. Her recent films include SHE GONE ROGUE (created in collaboration with trans film director/producer Rhys Ernst), presented in Made in L.A. 2012, the inaugural Los Angeles Biennial at the Hammer Museum, Los Angeles, and At Least You Know You Exist, presented at MoMA PS1 and the 3rd Moscow Biennial of Young Art. She has also performed and exhibited her work internationally in numerous museums, galleries, and film festivals including the 54th Venice Biennale (Swiss Off-Site Pavilion); Curtat Tunnel, Lausanne, Switzerland; L.U.C.C.A. Museum of Contemporary Art, Lucca, IT; Centre Georges Pompidou, Paris; Tromso Kunstaforening, Tromso, Norway; SF MOMA, and Yerba Buena Center for the Arts, San Francisco, CA; Hammer Museum, REDCAT and LACE, all in Los Angeles. She is represented by Luis De Jesus Los Angeles.