Margaret Dragu

Frugal Friday Flyers

Cooking has a strong and historic presence in art from the Futurist Banquets to Walter Benjamin’s Gastro-Constellations to  Fausto Grossi’s dinners at LIVE! Biennale, to Judy Chicago’s Dinner Party to Alice B. Toklas’s Cookbook.

Margaret Dragu’s Frugal Friday Flyers videos appeal to both moms & millennials, high brow & low brow , le gourmet & la gourmande. Dragu reminds us that art is life and life is art.


Margaret Dragu was the recipient of the Governor General’s Award for Visual and Media Arts in 2012, Éminence Grise (2012) for 7a*11d, and, in 2000, first artist in FADO’s publication series Canadian Performance Art Legends.

Dragu works in video, installation, web/analogue publication & performance. Spanning relational, durational, interventionist and community-based practices, she has shown in Canada, USA & Europe.

Dragu’s first discipline was dance. In 1971, she moved to New York to study dance but became immersed in the experimental art scene with painters, composers, sculptors, photographers, conceptual and performance artists (although there was no word for ‘performance art’ at the time). A dance scholarship brought her to Montreal where she became engrossed in the artists’ community of The Main-Ste-Laurent and Galerie Vehicule. While researching “found” movement, Dragu began working in striptease/burlesque: this ‘experiment’ lasted 20 years and continues to inform both her art practice and politics. At Vehicule, she worked with experimental filmmakers from the NFB who introduced her to the ‘new’ B/W videotape port-o-pack.

Dragu moved to Toronto in 1975. She made solo/low-fi performances for galleries and theatres while creating large site-specific, community-based, and agit-prop projects. She worked in commercial film, television and radio as an actor, producer, writer, and director; choreographed for theatre, film and television. She curated and wrote about performance art, dance, culture and politics.

In 1986, Dragu moved to Vancouver. She began working in installation, performance and new media including her international/legendary VERB FRAU TV. Margaret Dragu is celebrating her 48th year as a working artist. Her favourite art-making material is still the body despite or because of her bionic status as a grateful owner of two recent hip replacements.