Joyce Wieland

Joyce Wieland, Rat Life and Diet in North America (film still), 1968. Image courtesy Canadian Filmmakers Distribution Centre

Joyce Wieland, Rat Life and Diet in North America (film still), 1968. Image courtesy Canadian Filmmakers Distribution Centre

Joyce Wieland (b. 1931, Toronto, Canada, d. 1998) began her career in Toronto as a painter and mixed media artist. She moved to New York between 1962-1970 and during this time began to experiment with filmmaking alongside her painting practice. One of her most acclaimed films, Rat Life and Diet in America (1968), tells the story of a group of rats (which were in reality gerbils) held as political prisoners in the United States, who go on to escape to Canada. It subversively weaves political narrative to comment on an alternative path to dominant American ideologies.

Past exhibitions include Canadian Film Arts Centre, Hong Kong (1981); Whitney Museum of American Art, New York, USA (1973); Vancouver Art Gallery, Canada (1972); Art Gallery of Ontario, Toronto, Canada (1971); National Gallery of Canada, Ottawa, Ontario (1971); and Museum of Modern Art, New York, USA (1971).