November 17 - 15 December, 2018
56 Mulock Avenue
Unit 1, Toronto, ON
M6N 3C4, Canada
I usually come downtown to the Financial District to clear my head. I’ll sit in Commerce Court in the summer and watch the pigeons groom themselves in the fountain while a teller tans on lunch break. Or on a cooler day, like today, I’ll sit in the Dineen at the CIBC building, drink a London Fog, and stare at the Toronto-Dominion Center across the street. I’ll think of every beautiful, laboring soul who works there five days a week and calls it everyday life. What was life like before banks? I would love to go there but I think I would come crawling back.
Today, I have my eye on an $18.00 glass of Rkatsiteli, even though I probably shouldn’t. The notes read lime, juniper, and stone fruit, with a long finish and a lingering minerality. I taste the money the winery owes to banks and lenders, the dank must of the cargo container it came in. I taste the sweat of Mother Earth, who struggles to carry us on her back so we can indulge in our flights of fancy and order a glass of wine from Georgia. And I taste the server’s stress, who smiled as they placed this glass in front of me but is texting now, with a frown on their face, probably begging their roommate for rent because they can’t afford the whole thing again and have gone into overdraft twice this month alread whole thing again and have gone into overdraft twice this month already.
I worked in an office building once, but these days I get to work on my feet. My new free time feels priceless, but I still tabulate my month’s earnings every time I start to get anxious about money. I dream of the big break, the anomalous event that will pull me out of just being able to make it – maybe my tax return this April. I want everything that being rich gives you, but having money usually feels like a cruel punishment – it shows us all the things we think we need, and then only lets us choose one. I pay the bill and leave. I check my pockets for streetcar change, but they’re empty except for my credit card, so I take an Uber home. I pass one thousand people in ten minutes. Through tinted windows, I see the same beautiful souls heading home, trading in their briefcases and high heels for running shoes and Jansport backpacks. They watch me too, because car windows are not one-way mirrors. They can see my flushed and blemished face, my salt-stained coat and my Comme des Garçons wallet with no money in it.
This exhibition was produced with the support of the City of Toronto through the Toronto Arts Coucil.
Mike Goldby (b. 1991), lives and works in Toronto. He received his BFA from OCAD University in 2013, and is the recipient of the 2013 Medal for Integrated Media. Solo exhibitions include Mon Cheri, Brussels (2015); Jr. Projects, Toronto (2014); Tomorrow, NY (2013). Recent group exhibitions include The Island (2017), curated by Connor Olthius and Caleb Dunham, Chroma Lives (2016), curated by Erin Freedman and Lili Huston-Herterich, and Unkempt (2016), at MAW, NY, curated by AC Repair CO.