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The City in Motion

CAG/Telus Garden Public Art Commission

Call for participants aged 17 to 25yrs old

November 2014 – February 2015

Free

This fall, the Contemporary Art Gallery (CAG) is embarking on a unique public art commission and intensive program for emerging artists (ages 17 to 25 yrs old).  The CAG has been selected by Telus to develop a community-based permanent multimedia installation for the Telus office located in the new Telus Garden building on West Georgia Street in downtown Vancouver.  Through this invitation, the CAG has organized, The City in Motion, an intensive four month program for emerging artists interested in investigating the city through the frame of moving images.  Supported by Cineworks Independent Filmmakers Society and led by artist/mentors Josh Hite, Brian Lye and Jem Noble, participants will consider how the city has and is documented and envisioned through film, video and new media, engaging with the histories of documentary film and the city archive, and interrogating contemporary forms of documentation from smart phones videos and social media to surveillance recordings. Youth will respond to the ideologies, perceptions and histories of the city, culminating in the production of a permanent work at the Telus Garden building

This innovative program is an opportunity for youth to experiment with various media, offering training and mentorship on the concepts, documentation tactics and technical logistics for developing video/film/new media work. Through studio and gallery visits, workshops and screenings will also be connected to Vancouver’s cultural community. Designed to immerse participants in a rigorous schedule that supports the process of developing an idea into a final permanent installation, the CAG is targeting self-motivated individuals interested in collaborating in the process of creating a collaborative public art commission.

This innovative program is an opportunity for youth to experiment with various media, offering training and mentorship on the concepts, documentation tactics and technical logistics for developing video/film/new media work. Through studio and gallery visits, workshops and screenings the group will be connected to Vancouver’s cultural community. Cineworks will host a screening of completed works in February 2015.

To enroll: Send a letter of interest (500 words max) introducing yourself and outlining your interest in the program to learning@contemporaryartgallery.ca by Friday November 14, 5pm.

For more information on the project, contact: Shaun Dacey, Curator, Learning and Public Programs : s.dacey@contemporaryartgallery.ca or 604-681-2700

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Open Call - The City in Motion: deadline extended: Nov 17


Hello all! My name is Jas Lally and for the next 10 months I will be working as the Programs Assistant. I am excited to work with Shaun Dacey, Curator of Learning and Public Programs, the staff and volunteers at the CAG. I have been working and volunteering in the arts for the past few years and some of you may have seen me at the Vancouver Art Gallery and Access. I worked a the Vancouver Art Gallery for 5 years in Visitor Services and Administration where  I was able to meet local and international artists. At Access, where I first met  and worked  with Shaun, I was able to work  one-on-one with the Director/Curator and artists. I really enjoyed this more intimate level of work.

My experiences at both galleries solidified my choice in pursing my Masters in the History of Art which I recently completed  at the University of Birmingham, UK. I studied at the Barber Institute of Fine Art  where I co-curated an exhibition on portraiture with the Barber and the National Portrait Gallery. I also completed my dissertation on exhibition practices where I examined why textiles change meaning when exhibited. I was able to use  Lady Barber’s lace collection as my case study. My time at the Barber gave me perspective  and hands on experiences into the multidisciplinary world of curatorial.

My first introduction to the CAG came only three days after starting when I helped set up and greet guests at the CAG’s annual Art Auction. The auction went really well and it was such an exciting way to start a new job! My new role will allow me to help coordinate some interesting learning programs. For example, we recently launched the Telus Garden project, The City in Motion, where 11 young emerging artists are creating an original film to be permanently installed at the new Telus building. Look out for my blog on this project where you can follow along on the progress. I have also started to work with the artist in residence at the Burrard Marina Field House. The CAG recently hosted Fluid Frames: Filmmakers Series with Ben Russell. We hosted a film social at the Field House.

Look back to the CAG’s Blog for exciting updates about what I’m getting up to!

PS: if you haven’t already seen When Sky was Sea by Shimabuku drop by and say hello and sign up to attend one of the talks on the exhibition!

PSS: Did you  hear about our exciting new project in partnership with Ballet BC? and in association with the Art|Basel Crowdfunding Initiative and commissioning artists John Wood and Paul Harrison? to find out more click here: http://bit.ly/cagXbbc

See you at the CAG soon! – Jas Lally

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Hello from Jas Lally – New Programs Assistant at the CAG


As our contribution to Vancouver Design Week, the CAG worked with James Langdon, recipient of the 2012 Inform Award for Conceptual Design, presented by the Museum of Contemporary Art Leipzig, Germany. Langdon presented a short course and workshop in reading objects, environments and messages. Stimulated by the curious genre of design fiction, the programme asserts storytelling as the primary function of design. Langdon conducted a three day workshop on September 16–18 exploring narrative approaches to design, a series of connected exercises subjecting a collection of found materials to various manual and conceptual processes.

CAG volunteer Sara Khan writes about her experiences taking part in the three day workshop:

 

As an artist who enjoys telling stories through two dimensional media, the School for Design fiction workshop caught my attention; I was curious about what fiction through design could entail. On our first day we were asked to bring in three objects, organic or designed. People brought along things ranging from eggshells and apples to metal birds, buttons, bottles, and moth traps.

Before we started working on the activity set for the day James Langdon had us watch a short film. It replayed the same event but with slight variations with each iteration. A human figure used different objects in unconventional ways, from dumping food on a laptop to sitting on a book instead of reading it. At a glance the human figure came across a sort of a machine that had malfunctioned. Mulling over the film afterward made me wonder about why objects around us are operated the way they are and have a specific function or name, how come we almost use them like robots not really questioning their history, form or task.

Once we started talking about the objects we’d brought along and the workshop progressed; I realised more and more that in the everyday structure and organization of things and lives, we had forgotten to ponder the existence of what surrounds us. It reminded me of Sartre’s Antoine in “Nausea” and how he wonders about the bark of a tree and why it is considered to be black.

As we arranged and rearranged the items with each other, we saw how meaning was added to or subtracted from them. One of the last exercises led some of us to completely deconstruct the objects we were working with; which resulted in a lot of them either being completely stripped off their meaning or not changing at all, which was interesting to see.

By the end of the workshop though, I think, perhaps we were reading too much into everything, as humans often do; put anything before us and we’ll make up a story. At this point we watched a documentary about the Piltdown man. The film reminded me of the story of the Emperor’s New Clothes.

It is amazing how if you put forth a thought with enough conviction and confidence most people will believe it as the truth. It makes me wonder what falsehoods lurk in our histories.

So, as we wonder in awe at the totality of this existence, it is important to question the things we experience.

- Sara Khan

Check out a selection of books by James Langdon in the CAG book shop, on a specially dedicated shelf.

School for design fiction workbook

More Books by James Langdon.

James Langdon
A School for Design Fiction – workshop
16-18 September 2014, 6pm-9pm

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Sara Khan – The School for Design Fiction – A workshop with James Langdon


This summer I was lucky enough to be given the opportunity to intern at the Contemporary Art Gallery as the Communications Assistant. This was my first internship in the industry, so I did not really know what to expect, but it ended up being an incredibly insightful and motivating experience for me.

If you are familiar with the CAG blog, you have likely seen my “From the Archives” series, in which I discussed past exhibitions at the gallery and their relationships to themes of current exhibitions or other current issues in contemporary art. This gave me the chance to research and learn more about emerging and established artists, and was a great chance to use my academic knowledge in a real-world situation. It was pretty awesome to be able to write about an artist who’s work I had seen a few months ago while on exchange in Scotland (Nathan Coley!) on a gallery’s website in Vancouver.

I was excited to use my marketing and communications knowledge to assist with research into the marketing of art institutions and how non-profit galleries can reach a wider audience, especially in Vancouver. It was also eye-opening to be given the chance to attend Brendan Fernandes‘ interim performance and help with the gallery’s Family Day events; seeing and being a part of the processes of the gallery’s programs allowed me to experience what a career in the arts really entails.

I am now back in Montréal to complete my final year as an undergraduate Art History student at McGill University. After my internship this summer, I am looking forward to undertaking independent research concerning issues in contemporary art, something I had never studied heavily before this experience.

I want to thank the staff at the CAG for encouraging my creativity during this internship and giving me an authentic experience at the gallery. I hope to continue to contribute to the gallery in the future and am now even more thrilled to pursue a career in the arts industry!

- Kelli Sturkenboom

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Communicating Creativity: My CAG Experience


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