Erin Shirreff’s solo exhibition at the Contemporary Art Gallery will be the first presentation dedicated exclusively to the artist’s film and video work. It may seem a somewhat unexpected focus given Shirreff’s definition of herself as a sculptor. And yet her investigation into the language and perception of materiality has less to do with the presentation of physical objects than specifically to that of our experience of forms – how sharing the same space with a ‘thing’ varies from looking at its representation.
Shirreff is known for reproducing sculpture as images or making sculpture that distils the essence of a photograph, playing these two elements against one another as a means to prompt and test the viewer’s response. In Knives (2008) for example, she modeled a variety of knife-like forms from Plasticine, subsequently presenting them as a series of black and white photographs; her most recent sculptures made from ash and cement resemble photographs, their surfaces giving way to reveal themselves as planes an inch thick as we move around them.
Such preoccupation with the properties and potency of sculpture in relation to photographic reproduction grew out of Shirreff’s consideration of the work of Tony Smith; New Piece from 1966 made from black painted steel, in particular held a fascination, so much so that she made a pilgrimage to see it in person. Her actual experience of the work however revealed an unexpected level of engagement, making her question the limitations of sculpture as well as her own abilities as a viewer. She comments, “It left me wondering whether the encounter, sharing the same material space as the object, was somehow more difficult, perhaps more intimidating, complicated, or somehow overwhelming, and that I didn’t equal it. What was clear was that I wasn’t able to let myself be as absorbed into the physical encounter as I was by the experience of the image. That remove offered by the reproduction opened up this contemplative space.”
Each of the four works presented at the Contemporary Art Gallery focus on an image of a building, sculpture or landscape and seek to similarly evoke such a quality. Typically these silent videos are made from subtle combinations of stills or, in the case of Sculpture Park (Tony Smith), by the camera panning across a static object. The original images are further transformed by simple means such as the tracking of daylight across their surfaces, by modifications through colour alterations or other such analogue effects. Changes can also play with the illusion of three dimensions as the pieces unfold. Lake uses an image of Lake Okanagan in B.C. where Shirreff grew up and her family still lives, the picture taken from an early 1980s tourism magazine. For this work Shirreff re-photographed the original image many times sequencing these as a series of stills, deploying subtle shifts in colour and light to alter the original hand-painted quality.
These nuanced adjustments appear in all of Shirreff’s videos. Some modifications highlight the qualities of the original photograph, revealing dust on its surface or illuminating the glossy quality of the paper, reinforcing its status as object. In drawing attention to the material properties of the initial image used, Shirreff builds a tension between the subject and the formal values of its representation. Whether it is a photograph of a Medardo Rosso sculpture from 1896 or the United Nations Building in New York, the thing or scene being represented is no longer the point of focus. Shirreff challenges our understanding of the nature of images themselves, their intrinsic qualities and our encounter with them.
The exhibition is presented in collaboration with Carleton University Art Gallery, Ottawa and Agnes Etherington Art Centre, Kingston, collectively marking the first comprehensive exhibition of Shirreff’s work in Canada. Each venue presents unique exhibitions, drawing out varied strands in her rich body of work, and have come together to produce her first monograph. The publication features essays by Sandra Dyck and Jan Allen and an interview with the artist by Jenifer Papararo.MORE
The Contemporary Art Gallery presented the first North American exhibition by Dublin-based artist Sarah Browne, a survey including the artist’s entry for the 2009 Venice Biennale. Using ‘the economy’ as the basis for her artistic practice, Browne works with small communities of people, documenting resourceful forms of exchange to reveal the hidden social relations that exist in smallscale economic structures, summations of collective intention or desire typically influenced by emotional affects. Within the current context of austerity measures and failing markets, such an undertaking could not be more relevant. By processes such as filmmaking, sculpture and publishing the potential for a more radical resourcefulness is sought as a manifestation of creative opposition to prevailing systems. Vancouver with its immediate history of Vietnam draft dodgers and alternative island lifestyles provided an interesting backdrop for Browne’s work.MORE
Frances Stark’s pivotal feature length video My Best Thing is a digital animation, which traces the development of two sexual encounters that progress into conversations about film, literature, art, collaboration and subjectivity. It is a personal narrative that considers the artist’s use of online sex-chat rooms as vehicles for her creative process. The poignant conversations Stark captures are often comic, heightened by the animation itself where she used Xtranormal, a free 3D-movie making software, to render herself and her male counterparts as cartoons, naked except for fig leaves, speaking in computer-generated voices. In conveying the complexity of her interests Stark manages to imbue these commonly disparaged internet sites, as well as their users, with positive, productive and social characteristics.
A publication co-published by the Contemporary Art Gallery, Koenig Books, London, and the Walter Philips Gallery, Banff accompanied the exhibition. It features a text by prominent British curator Mark Godfrey who addresses Stark’s resolve in representing her broad, and at times clashing, interests from her recently found enthusiasm for the controversial dancehall musician Beenie Man to her homage for the highly respected feminist painter Sylvia Sleigh.MORE
For American artist Sharon Hayes’ first solo exhibition in Canada, the CAG presented In the Near Future (2005-2008) her multifaceted and dynamic installation, incorporating 13 slide projectors and nearly 250 different images. The numerous images were gathered from audience members over four years as part of performances Hayes staged in six cities.
Hayes invited onlookers to document her enactment of 13 lone protests. In select public sites she picketed with placards bearing anachronistic and ambiguous slogans. Some she made up, altered or directly appropriated from bygone protests, such as, “Who approved the war in Vietnam?” is a phrase originally used in 1962 at the Charter Day Protest at the University of California and “I am a Man” a slogan taken from the civil rights movement during the Memphis Sanitation strike in 1968. Each performance is a paring down of the basic strategies of street protest – the way text, body, and place and time go together to define a subject and create a common language. Hayes’ discursive and aesthetic investigation in the history of protest chimes directly with the recent success of mass protests in Tunisia, Egypt, and Yemen, and the worldwide support for the Libyan revolt.MORE
For their first solo exhibition in Canada, the CAG presented Beyond Guilt – The Trilogy (2003-2005) a collaborative video series by Israeli artists Ruti Sela and Maayan Amir.
The work’s currency rests in its daring and mischievous blend of sex and politics and its jumbling of subject and author. The trilogy begins with Beyond Guilt #1 shot in the bathrooms of night clubs in Tel Aviv where the artists record themselves negotiating sexual encounters. In Beyond Guilt #2, through an online chat room, the artists invited men to a hotel room where discussions of sexual preferences lead to talk of experiences in the army and the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. And in the final video, they invited a sex worker to a hotel room, gave her their camera and asked her to document their meeting.
In all three, Sela and Amir are instigators on and off camera, acting as provocateurs as well as ready and willing participants. Beyond Guilt – The Trilogy is at times difficult to watch. The artists create risky scenarios by negotiating sex inpublic places and inviting strangers into their hotel room. Yet, Sela and Amir have managed to anaesthetize situations that are out of the ordinary, filled with unknowns and potential risk. They capture a banality within the sensational, neutering much of the provocation. Sela and Amir’s conflation of sex and war isn’t what one would expect – a depiction of spectacle and drama. It is of the everyday and seems to represent a possible tactic for coping with life in Tel Aviv. In a nation continually at war, surrounded by violence, this seems most viable.MORE
Vancouver-based artist and writer Roy Arden curated an exhibition of work by internationally renowned artist Hans-Peter Feldmann. Feldmann has had profound influence on the shape of contemporary conceptual art and photography, paralleling text and image and redefining methods of exhibition and distribution. For Feldmann’s first solo exhibition in Canada, and in order to introduce local audiences to the breadth of the artist’s work, Arden selected an array of Feldmann’s signature bookworks, posters and smaller works. The exhibition also included 100 Years, an ambitious photographic series of 101 black and white portraits of people ranging in age from 8 months to 100 years old. The formal composition of the images strongly relate to work of the early 20th century photographer August Sander. In conjunction with the exhibition, the CAG published Birgit Doing Her Make Up, a bookwork comprised of 72 successive photographs.MORE
This exhibition at the Contemporary Art Gallery assembled a wide spectrum of Shearer’s recent work with the aim of profiling its many convergent strains. The centerpiece for the show was a recent sculptural installation in the form of a steel garden shed inside of which a guitar P/A system played a heavy metal guitar solo specially commissioned by Shearer. The ‘music’ was amplified and distorted by the metal of the shed, creating a keening shrine to angry, cloistered youth.
Vancouver based artist Steven Shearer works in a broad range of disciplines including painting and collage, and continues to investigate the vernacular aesthetics of the 1970s as a site for looking at the emancipatory energies and sometimes revolutionary potential of teens and youth. He has assembled a growing archive of photographs, mostly downloaded from the web, of amateur record and tape collections, guitars and other totems of youthful rebellion and identification. He has also produced a number of works anthologizing images of ‘70s teen pop idols like Shawn Cassidy, whose androgynous sexuality and rapid climb into and then out of the heights of teen fandom is used for its autobiographical metaphors.
Steven Shearer is a collector of content, which he gathers in the form of images and lists. His accumulation and selection is derived from a researched interest in popular modes of representation that is specific to forms that have not yet established themselves or conformed to a set of established conventions. Within his collection there is often a subject matter that reflects a certain time period, and acts as social commentary, which at times Shearer defines through a personal history. But the overarching commonality running through his collection lies in formal concerns, in the manner, form or context in which a subject is represented.
Shearer has compiled an assortment of images from early teen magazines, at a time when the emerging genre was still experimenting with ways to represent its subject matter. The marketing power of a single image was not fully realized. Instead these fan magazines presented more of a scrap book approach that incorporated a large portion of non-professional and non-staged photographs. In the early days of fan magazines when their numbers were limited, they published a seemingly endless number of images, creating icons through sheer quantity with almost blatant disregard for the quality of the image or its layout on the page. Using this abundant resource of material, Shearer looks for particularities, selecting like images through similarities in poses, action or framing devices, reconfiguring them into groupings in order to find new ways of seeing and reading the imagery.
In Kaleidoscope (2001), one of Shearer’s early and now signature collage works, he compiles predominantly frontal shots of the 70s heart throb Leif Garret into a large and tight grid-like pattern without cropping or altering them; an approach he repeats in a number of works in this exhibition. Shearer reformats these images of a common subject matter into a monumental scale, a single field of hundreds of found images. Even though Shearer rarely alters the images, the overall collage creates a highly mannered effect that looks like it has a rigid structure imposed on to it: each four-sided image is framed by an almost symmetrical white border. Shearer does not want to deny the content of the individual images and tries to maintain the integrity of the original source material, while also considering the composition of the reconfiguration as a whole. It is a matter of proximity. From a distance the work appears as a color field, even the harshness of the negative spaces softens, melding the individual images instead of dividing them.
Shearer pushes this play with distances in List (2004), a large scale print of thousands of extreme underground black/death metal recordings sourced from tape trader lists. From a distance the columns of titles, band names and tape descriptions have a formal quality reminiscent of large scale abstract paintings. It is not until you stand directly in front of the work that the pattern breaks into columns, and then lines, and then words. Shearer uses a painterly approach, giving information a physical presence and even though the text is discernable at a certain vantage point the amount of information in its sheer volume is almost indigestible in anything other than its formal representation.
Part of Shearer’s collection is dedicated to images of handicrafts originally published in craft specific magazines from the late sixties and early seventies. With the craft imagery in particular, Shearer takes the most liberties, removing them from their background and adjusting their shape and size. He then reproduces them as silk-screen prints, reanimating them using a craft based technique and giving them a renewed context. Countless hours were spent making these beloved and be-laboured crafts, but when it came to their representation, like the countless images of teen idols, there was a carelessness; the work was usually self-photographed under poor conditions, and badly reproduced.
Slumber is the latest piece in Shearer’s large format collages. It breaks in content from his earlier works, moving away from youth and music cultural references to a less self referential subject matter and a direct pointing to the history of portraiture. For Slumber, he has culled images from the web, compiling photos of people sleeping. Shearer is specific about his sleepers. All of them are captured photographically sleeping, but usually not in bed or lying down. They are all caught in unlikely and often comical and mannered positions, half-sitting in chairs, slumped over tables or propped against walls with contorted bodies, twisted necks, and gaping mouths. He then combines these multiple images into a rigid structure that in a way conflicts with the subject matter, arranging them into a loose grid and finding a way to display the images in a painterly manner. For Shearer, the self-published images that he finds on the web are reminiscent of the amateurish and haphazard reproductions of early fan and craft magazines.
Sheds — the typical aluminum tool sheds found in almost every suburban back yard — are also a worthy subject matter for Shearer’s collection. Using his signature method of collage, he creates a grid of nondescript backyard sheds. Within this assembly of like images, he inserts a single image of a longhaired teenager playing a guitar. Adding this one inconsistency gives the shed new meaning. It now has the potential to become the practice ground for the guitar playing youth, a fertile ground for creativity and a place of freedom. For his exhibition at the Contemporary Art Gallery, Shearer brought this possibility into the gallery by assembling a “performance space” from prefabricated panels for such sheds. For the majority of the exhibition the shed sat closed with only slivers of light escaping from its cracks. On one occasion only, the sculpture became active via prerecorded death metal riffs specifically constructed to blare from within the closed aluminum walls causing the shed to vibrate and shudder in response to the different notes.
As much as Shearer is constantly looking for content he is also looking for innovative modes of display. He often returns to traditional forms of representation in order to recontextualize his collections. For Dirtyface (2003-4), Shearer unites seven images from his collection of teen idols in a series of seven silver point drawings. The old school technique creates a weird rift in time, converting the familiar 70s pop stars into 19th century street characters: from Adam Rich look-a-like (the youngest sibling from the television series “Eight is Enough”) to chimney sweep. In a similar manner, Longhairs, a series of crayon drawings, depicts five longhaired men, all shirtless. The medium and Shearer’s particular choice of characters transforms the contemporary low resolution jpegs to echo models of historical portraiture. He also reworks select images on canvas, moving deftly between painting, silkscreen and collage. The use of traditional mediums and the meditative focus of these hand made images contrast and compliment the glacial accumulations of printed images in Shearer’s archive.
There is something so optimistic and obsessive about all the subjects he chooses to collect, something that is reflected in his own act of collecting, and extended to the manner in which he presents his archive. How to give these things, his collection of images and text, a physical form or body? In their origin the items in his collection were neglectfully presented and reproduced, and in acquiring these images he can take the role of their caretaker, attempting to create a new context and aesthetic form in which to represent them or by using them as source material for traditional forms of image making.
- Reid Shier
In Catalogue, Terada occupies and exaggerates the means by which an institution such as the Contemporary Art Gallery exists by making private patronage the content of an artwork. In the artist’s words: “Public institutions devoted to contemporary visual art maintain themselves through public and private philanthropy—granting organizations, members of the gallery, volunteers, and other donors being but a few—which necessitate relationships that are in need of renewal and upkeep. With the support of a number of contributors, I wish to expose and alter the mandate of such an institution—and the mechanisms by which it realizes this mandate—within the context of an exhibition.” To realize this goal, Terada sought the participation of patrons to support and facilitate the cost of producing an artist’s catalogue.
The exhibition had two distinct public components, the first mounted within the Contemporary Art Gallery’s Alvin Balkind Gallery and its street front window vitrines. Here, vinyl signage acknowledges the support of those who contributed to the project. The names and company logos, as a result, comprise the visual component, the “art” as it were, of the gallery’s display.
The second component is the accompanying exhibition publication, which was for sale at the gallery’s reception desk. Rather than assume a supplementary, explanatory or documentary role to work displayed in the gallery, the production of this catalogue is an artwork. The catalogue looks and functions like any other publication would within the typical frame of an exhibition, but by highlighting patronage of the exhibition it hopes to expose and exploit the conventions such promotional and explanatory vehicles rely upon in their efforts to contextualize and legitimize artist’s work. Despite appearances to the contrary, then, Terada intends to cast suspicion on the catalogue (and with it himself and the gallery), and in doing so raise questions about the objectivity and truth value such publications engender and maintain.MORE
In celebration of its 30th Anniversary, the Contemporary Art Gallery presented an exhibition and project honoring its early years. On February 23, 1973, the Artists’ Gallery opened its doors at 555 Hamilton Street. Later to be renamed the Contemporary Art Gallery, the Artists’ Gallery was initiated by an arts advisory committee under the umbrella of the City of Vancouver. Central to its early mandate and philosophy was the promotion and creation of local visual arts.
During this time the City of Vancouver began a program, with assistance from the Federal Local Initiatives Program (LIP) to purchase works by local artists. In support of this ambitious project, the Artists’ Gallery was conceived as both a depository and exhibition space. The Contemporary Art Gallery continues to act as custodian for over 3000 collected works, many dating from the early to mid 1970s when the bulk of the collection was assembled.
The history of this important collection of art, of the Artists’ Gallery, and of the early years of the community that shaped what would become the Contemporary Art Gallery will be showcased this summer in an exhibition featuring works from the collection.
Project Organizers: Reid Shier and Shawn PreussMORE
Toronto artist James Carl likes to mix things up – to confound references and test limits and then step back and watch things get funny. He combines a precise examination of the lexicon of sculpture with an abiding interest in the artifacts of public social life, filtered through the ubiquitous technologies and materials of contemporary industrialism. Plot, the installation that he prepared for the Contemporary Art Gallery, could be a story, a secret conspiracy, or a piece of real estate. Or perhaps the title refers to the activity of plotting the coordinates of the digital renderings that adorn various surfaces of artworks as well as the gallery and its exterior. Combining sculpture with graphic work, Plot demonstrates Carl’s contrary approach to traditional artistic methods and materials, and the ways these things are both conditioned and altered by expectation and use.MORE
In Our Love is Like the Earth, the Sun, the Trees and the Birth Martin Boyce created an environment that formed a quiet, poetic sensibility. The title is taken from a verse of a song by the seminal 1980’s Manchester band New Order. Sculptures reminiscent of a modernist day bed are used in both exhibitions, as is a series of fluorescent light sculptures that evoke young tree-like saplings. Ventilation Grills for an Apartment Building (2002) is interspersed along the gallery walls, etched with words from a poem by John Donne. The stanza reads: “License my roving hands, and let them go, Before, behind, between, above, below”. The three suspended objects in In Dreams (2002), an Alexander Calder-like mobile, are from a cut up and reworked leg splint designed by Charles and Ray Eames for the US Navy in 1942.
Isabelle Pauwels is a Vancouver artist with an abiding concern about the effect of architecture on social relation. In collaboration with Vancouver’s Trapp Editions, the Contemporary Art Gallery published an artist’s bookwork by Pauwels. Unfinished Apartment for Rent details, in seven screenplays, the interaction between a series of fictitious apartment dwellers. Forced through financial constraints to assemble furniture from the walls of their individual accommodations, these renters sacrifice more and more privacy as they cannibalize their dwellings for creature comforts. Pauwel’s bookwork was displayed in an installation designed by the artist.MORE
Satan, oscillate my metallic sonatas brought together a variety of works by artists whose creative methods “showed” violence, implicated danger or threatened retribution. Michelle Normoyle’s provocative and ongoing series of photographs documented the chaos of her child’s room after play. Peter Lojewski’s occupation as a licensed practical nurse provided subjects for a series of roughly drawn but eloquent paintings depicting hospital wards, others that invoked revenge fantasies against disparate cultural and historic figures. By expanding on these themes, the exhibition located aestheticizing depictions in acts of control, catharsis and elegy. As the palindrome title suggests, the exhibition drew parallels between depictions and suggestions of violence, and the impulses of mastery and aesthetic delight with which they often co-exist.MORE
Hammertown was a touring exhibition that highlighted a young generation of Canadian artists, with a focus on West Coast practice, and on artists who had recently come to prominence. The artists all shared an interest in widely available commodities, cultural products and popular media, and often re-inscribed these materials with personal, politicized meanings. The exhibition‘s engagement with landscape was a touchstone for works that propose a dialogue with social histories and ideas of place.
Location: Fruitmarket Gallery, Edinburgh, Scotland; Bluecoat Gallery, Liverpool, England (April/May, 2003)
October 5 – November 14, 2002
Catalogue with text by participating artists; co-published with The Fruitmarket Gallery, UKMORE
The Contemporary Art Gallery was pleased to announce the Canadian premiere of Vancouver based artist Stan Douglas’ film work Journey into Fear (2001). Douglas is one Canada’s most internationally acclaimed artists, and this marked his first exhibition in his home town since 1998.
Journey into Fear takes its name from two movies. The 1940 original features Orson Welles’ Mercury Players. A 1975 remake was one of the first motion pictures ever shot in Vancouver by a local crew. It starred Sam Waterston and Vincent Price in a shipbound suspense thriller. Douglas’ work is a DVD video installation that stages an antagonistic exchange between a woman and man in a cyclical, ever mutating loop, a formal device characteristic of Douglas’ recent practice. Set on a container ship en route to Vancouver, the work examines the 1970s as an historical moment of flux between internationalism and globalism, to which the ship acts as stage and metaphor. The DVD was accompanied by a suite of photographs of Vancouver set locations, including Douglas’ 16 foot long depiction of the south side of the 100 Block of West Hastings Street.MORE
Geoffrey Farmer’s installation The Blacking Factory was comprised of three interrelated works: a prop newspaper box, a sculptural installation in the form of a large truck trailer and a film work depicting a window of the Contemporary Art Gallery shattering from an explosive concussion. With these works Farmer utilized the technological expertise of the film industry to create analogies between increasingly sophisticated mechanics of display and the artifice behind the social production of meaning and value. The truck trailer was fabricated in mimicry of those used by movie production companies—an increasingly common sight on the streets of Vancouver—and alluded to the transportation of such necessities as props, lighting systems and costumes necessary to the creation of illusions. The film work rehearsed a set piece found in a wide spectrum of Hollywood films—from action-adventure to thriller—and utilized the unexpectedness of this violent genre staple within and about the gallery to prompt reflection about the context of our perception.MORE
Dream Home consisted of a suite of small paintings and a pair of constructed architectural models based on images and plans taken from Vancouver real estate advertisements. The models depict the interiors of two residences, one the largest, the other the smallest, which were on the market on a given day last year. Van Halm’s gouache paintings illustrated the exteriors of a number of other houses for recent sale.MORE
Monumental in scale and civic ambition at its inception, the architectural installation of Le Corbusier’s at Firminy, an old French mining town, was never finished due to local industrial decline. In recent years it has suffered from political manipulation and physical neglect. The juxtaposition of historical importance against an aura of failed modernist utopianism was documented in this large-scale photographic series.MORE
The work of Germaine Koh marries conceptual strategies with mundane everyday motifs and actions. For her first solo exhibition in Vancouver she produced two works. Prayers , translated keyboard strokes from the CAG’s office computers into smoke signals outside the gallery. …  rained thousands of ball bearings onto the floor of the Balkind Gallery from tracks slung across its ceiling.MORE
Visual Stimulants presented three artists whose work had an intense visual impact and was seemingly abstract in appearance. Angela Leach, Ken Singer and Jeremy Stanbridge were part of a young generation of artists whose artwork directly or indirectly alluded to historical forms of abstraction – in this case modernist painting from the 1960s. Although the art from that period stressed the formal properties of colour and support, and avoided references to narrative or representation, the artists in Visual Stimulants in large part questioned the autonomy of abstract painting and return it to the realm of the everyday. Visual Stimulants presented the work of three artists: Angela Leach from Toronto, and Ken Singer and Jeremy Stanbridge from Vancouver and was curated by Keith Wallace.MORE
In this exhibition by Kelly Mark the fascination with the mundane was coupled with a desire to document and bring a sense of order to things. The work Broken Meter, for example, consisted of a grid of photographs documenting ideosyncratic notes left at broken parking meters. Placed presented photographs of objects, ranging from styrofoam cups to pieces of crumpled paper, that had been specifically “placed” or tucked into spots rather than simply being tossed away. Sniff was a video loop of the artist’s cat sniffing an array of objects placed in front of him. Origami Transfer was comprised of dozens of bus transfers that had been obsessively folded and shaped into miniature sculptures.MORE
Liz Magor is a Canadian artist who lives in Vancouver. She began exhibiting her work in 1973 and has been included in numerous prestigious international exhibitions such as the Venice Biennial, Sydney Biennial, Documenta VIII in Kassel, and inSITE in San Diego/Tijuana. While she is widely known across Canada and beyond, this was Magor’s first solo exhibition in a public gallery in Vancouver in a decade.
Magor is primarily recognized for her sculptural work – although she has developed significant projects in other mediums such as photography – which is expressed in various forms ranging from full-scale installations to individual pieces. Stores presented her most recent sculptural work and incorporated non-traditional materials such as silicone rubber and pigmented plaster and resin. With these materials, she made casts of objects with startlingly realistic results. However, while the large pile of rocks placed on the floor is convincingly real, the discovery of actual junk food stashed within its hollow cavity renders the mantle of reality questionable, bringing forward a focus on the work’s materiality.
Magor’s sculptures at first resemble literal, easily accessible representations, but the play between what is real and what is an illusion, and the curious combination of food with other unrelated objects, complicate their apparent simplicity. The minimal yet evocative presentation suggests narratives and the activity of unknown personae obsessed with squirreling things away as insurance against anticipated disasters or shortages. It also implies larger social/psychological issues about the relationship between the desire for security in the face of unidentifiable fears, and the fundamental question of what people store away and why.
Eleanor Bond is recognized internationally for her large-scale oil paintings of urban landscapes in which a labyrinth of forms include both the actual and the imaginary. Although Bond’s paintings do not represent a specific built environment, their starting point is a specific urban place, space and landscape. This exhibition presented 2 works produced from research undertaken in Vancouver during February of 1999. Bond spent ten days walking and driving throughout Vancouver and its environs making photographic and video documentation which influenced the painting of Glass City and Tent City. - Curator, Petra Watson.MORE
You are invited to visit the brand new CAG Bookshop!
The CAG Book Shop is launching this Saturday (1.30pm-2.30pm) with the first book launch and signing in the newly renovated space:
DAS ARCHIVE / THE ARCHIVE by Jürgen Partenheimer
The transformation is complete, with a new look, new shelving and increased space for many many more titles. Visitors can now browse and purchase publications from over 80 titles from our 30 year publishing history.
The bookshop features the CAG’s exhibition catalogues and artist’s book works from as far back as 1986, the shop is a great resource for anyone wanting to get a better idea of the CAG’s exhibition history including notable and pivotial publications by Stan Douglas, Christopher Williams, Damian Moppett, Hans-Peter Feldman and Frances Stark.
We are also proud to present new CAG publications on Erin Shirreff, Mungo Thomson, Nathan Coley and Jürgen Partenheimer, all available for sale in the shop.
We also carry additional publications on artists exhibited at the gallery with select books on Nancy Holt, James Welling, Mike Nelson, and Kay Rosen to name a few.
In addition to buying books and catalogues, visitors can also find information on upcoming talks and events and use the space to sit down and leaf through information binders on our exhibitions and projects, currently Kevin Schmidt, Marian Penner Bancroft, Tim Etchells and Broken City Lab.
Please visit the shop section of our website for detailed information on all our publications. Click here for the CAG online SHOP.MORE
We are all set up and excited for tonight’s opening of the New York Art Book Fair at PS1 MoMA, come by our booth Q49 on the second floor. We are presenting CAG publications from 30 years of publishing, among them Christopher Williams, Robert Orchardson, Sarah Browne, Roy Arden, Hans-Peter Feldmann, Ken Lum, Shannon Oksanen, Frances Stark and many more. We are also featuring limited edition prints by Robert Orchardson and Thomas Bewick. We will also have some rare signed copies of several of our publications as well!
See you at the fair, yours Jill and Soledad.MORE
Thank you to everyone who came to Sarah Browne’s talk on Saturday July 14th. We were delighted to welcome an excellent attendance to the gallery.
The event was timed to correspond with Sarah Browne’s exhibition, How To Use Fool’s Gold, which opened on Thursday July 12. During her talk, Browne spoke on the economic structures and social relations that are intrinsic to her work. The exhibition is titled after the work, How to Use Fool’s Gold (Pyrite Radio) (2012), a crystal radio which collects the broadcasts that fill the air around us, a metaphor for those things of value that go unseen, revealed by a mineral mistaken as a precious commodity. The piece is the first work encountered, visitors are able to listen in on headphones.
This survey exhibition is Dublin-based artist Sarah Browne’s first exhibition in North America, the exhibition continues until September 2, 2012.
A full colour publication How To Use Fool’s Gold, accompanies the exhibition for the special exhibition price of $30. It includes essays by Tessa Giblin, Curator of Visual Arts, Project Arts Centre Dublin and artist Jeremy Millar. Also available are three more publications on Sarah Browne, A Model Society: Patterns & Thoughts, Sarah Browne/IrelandVenice and Lebensreform in Leitrim all available for sale at the gallery. For more information on all the publications visit: http://www.contemporaryartgallery.ca/#newsMORE
On Sunday April 1st at the CAG, Tate Modern curator Mark Godfrey gave an engaging talk on Frances Stark’s practice in relation to her work My Best Thing to over 100 visitors. Frances Stark’s My Best Thing is a feature length animation film currently on view until Sunday April 15. Here are some images of the event taken by CAG volunteer Jamie Dolinko.MORE
Come to the CAG this Saturday evening, March 19th, 6-7 pm, to celebrate the launch of Roy Arden’s artist publication, UNDERTHESUN. Produced as part of his solo exhibition at the Contemporary Art Gallery, the publication documents the majority of the nearly one hundred works on view and was designed by Arden in collaboration with Mark Timmings.
The publication will be available at the CAG for FREE until the exhibition closes on Sunday March 27th. It will also be available at select locations throughout the city, such as Read Bookstore at Emily Carr University of Art + Design, Langara College Library, the Department of Art History, Visual Art and Theory at the University of British Columbia, the Vancouver Public Library’s Central Branch, and Vancity Theatre.
In addition to the publication, we are also launching Divine Love, 2011, a special edition black and white archival pigment print by Roy Arden. Measuring 15×20 inches, printed on rag paper and produced in a limited edition of 15 with 3 artist’s proofs, it is available for $300.
We hope to see you here on Saturday!
Roy Arden, Divine Love, 2011MORE
On Saturday we launched our latest publication An Invitation to An Infiltration. Contributing artists Holly Ward and Jonathan Middleton came out for the event and Jonathan was signing fictional dedications in the catalogues. The guests eagerly passed around the books to read his interventions.MORE
This Saturday, February 19, from 3 to 5 pm the CAG will host a special performance by Jonathan Middleton to celebrate the launch of our latest exhibition catalogue, An Invitation to An Infiltration. Middleton is a Vancouver-based artist and curator, whose practice examines the relationships between language, failure, and the structure of comedy. He is one of the artists who participated in the exhibition An Invitation to an Infiltration, which coincided with the 2010 Winter Olympic Games in Vancouver. The above image shows Middleton engaged in an act of intervention, replacing the exhibition title with his own. On Saturday Middleton will be here to sign your catalogues with fictionalicized dedications.
An Invitation to An Infiltration was guest curated by Eric Fredericksen. He invited Fia Backström, Lucy Clout, Hadley+Maxwell, Jonathan Middleton, Dexter Sinister, Holly Ward and Jordan Wolfson to participate in an exhibition that explored the potential competitive nature of group shows against the background of one of the world’s major sporting competitions.
The CAG is pleased to announce the release of Portrait, the third and final in a series that uses the petit genres of landscape, still life, and portraiture to reflect our recent programming and to frame current tendencies in contemporary art. It includes texts by curator Glenn Alteen, film theorist Lisa Coulthard, art historian Gill Perry, and cultural theorist Helma Sawatzky, as well as a text by CAG curator Jenifer Papararo, and an interview with artist Elizabeth Zvonar.
The first 10 people to print this coupon and bring it into the gallery or show us this post on their mobile phone will receive a FREE copy of Portrait. Don’t wait to take advantage of this great offer!MORE
This artist's book is the final part of a photographic work, the first three parts of which were installations. The book consists of twelve fold-outs with text by the artist. Bancroft posits a concern with the landscape as an individual creates it through her/his own history and imagination. The bookwork reflects the impulse to interrupt a smooth narrative reading.MORE
Burning Bush was published on the occasion of the exhibition by the same name held at Artspeak, September 9 to October 15, 2005. Speculating on belief, Kevin Schmidt's video Burning Bush and Juan Gaitan's essay Doubt as an Optical Illusion, instigate discussions around faith, disbelief and humanity. Schmidt's extended landscape portrait of a burning bush intermingles religious, political and art historical mythologies to point to the languages, both visual and textual, of doctrine. In the staging of a miracle, the bush assumes a kind of faltering breath, a sense of possibility. If the bush is indeed "a sleeping life," Burning Bush awakens in the viewer the prospect of humanistic consideration. Schmidt's and Gaitan's investigations are pertinent given the ongoing disasters reported on daily: New Orleans' sinking, Iraq's continued bedlam, environmental disaster, terror. In this climate of physical and philosophical crisis, miracles gain possibility, potency and even efficacy. They can ask us to suspend our (dis)belief and bear witness to the world. Burning Bush extends an invitation to meditate on aesthetic, cultural, political and spiritual references, offering the potential of sublime wonder and growth.MORE
This publication is based on an online project by renowned UK artist, writer and theater director Tim Etchells.
Throughout 2011, Vacuum Days created online announcements like playbills for a rolling programme of imaginary events. Spelled out in overzealous capitals and small print, the project web site was updated each day in a process of call and response with unfolding political situations and events.
In this published version of Vacuum Days, Etchells’ explores the zone of sensationalist media, news-as-pornography, hyped-up current affairs, Internet spam, twitter gossip and tabloid headlines. Vacuum Days – a Dadaist year book of sorts – conjures a set of caustic, far-fetched, unlikely, absurd and uncomfortable performances, lectures, contests, fights, film screenings and other forms of public display.
With his participation in the biennials of Paris, Venice and São Paulo, Jürgen Partenheimer is one of the most important German artists working today. With critical intelligence, Jürgen Partenheimer measures and maps the free space of art and its practice, which must constantly be redefined. As the artist's physical and psychological "storedom", the "archive" unites memories with the present and the individual with cultural recollection.
This book- designed in close collaboration with the artist - sheds light on various aspects of Partenheimer's multifaceted oeuvre that combines constructive elements of Minimal Art with lyrical intensity.
The publication contains text contributions by authors representing a variety of disciplines, written in German and English, they include Anne Carson, Lebogang Mashile, Carla Schulz-Hoffmann, Rudi Fuchs and Nigel Prince.
In 2014, the Pinakothek der Moderne, Munich, the Falckenberg Collection, Hamburg, the Gemeentemuseum, The Hague, and the Contemporary Art Gallery, Vancouver will present thematic exhibitions of Jürgen Partenheimer's work.MORE
This publication is the first artist's substantial monograph, covering the past 10 ten years. Born in 1967 in Glasgow, Nathan Coley is interested in the idea of “public” space, and his practice explores the ways in which architecture becomes invested—and reinvested—with meaning. Across a range of media Coley investigates what the built environment reveals about the people it surrounds and how the social and individual response to it is in turn culturally conditioned. Using the readymade as a means to take from and re-place in the world, Coley addresses the ritual forms we use to articulate our beliefs—from hand-held placards and erected signs to religious sanctuaries. Whether highlighting in illuminated letters the testimony of a New Yorker recalling the World Trade Center attacks or erasing the names of the dead from their gravestones, his work frequently turns the specific into the general, thereby testing its function as a form of social representation; simply, does this aphorism, this gravestone, this building, speak on my behalf?MORE
Pulmo Marina is a film and a publication. It is the story of a living creature that was raised for display behind a window in a tank at the Monterey Bay Aquarium, California. Then it has been filmed and projected onto the big screen and now it is fractioned in discrete units printed on paper. It is the story of a living form which is always the same, always different.MORE
Based on an interview between Aurélien Froment and Werner Herzog in Los Angeles in 2008, this publication focuses on the image of the ship on the hill, which symbolises Fitzcarraldo's plot and the myth that has surrounded the film and its production.MORE
"Written and assembled by Meriç Algün Ringborg, this volume is both a two-part reflection and demonstration of disappearance in both personal and cultural terms. The first portion contains an essay that illustrates contemporary and historic assumptions of space and time. Rather than trying to articulate the very meaning of lacking substance, Ringborg writes the idea of disappearance through its converse–documentation, power, place and surveillance. The second portion contains a series of fragments taken from different unnamed sources that both describe and demonstrate erasure in all its moods, ranging from the humorous to the poignant." Printed Matter.org
Location: Date: Time: is a limited edition of 500 copies.
Lauded by photographers, artists and critics for his influence on the contemporary generation of art photographers, James Welling has created beautiful and uncompromising photographs for over thirty-five years. James Welling: Monograph offers an indispensible resource for those who are interested in this artist's remarkable, foundational practice. Published to accompany James Welling: Monograph, a traveling exhibition organized by the Cincinnati Art Museum and curated by James Crump, this large-scale catalogue presents over 250 images, including important early and iconic works from the 1970's to the present and provides the most thorough presentation of the artist's work to date. Among an extensive introductory essay by James Crump, this monograph also includes text contributions by Mark Godfrey and Thomas Seelig, and an interview by Eva Respini, Associate Curator in the Department of Photography at the MoMA.MORE
TIME PEOPLE MONEY CRICKETS is LA based artist Mungo Thomson's first monograph. The book is published by the Contemporary Art Gallery and SITE Santa FE and accompanies the exhibitions with the same name at SITE Santa Fe in February 23, 2013 to May 19, 2013 and at the Contemporary Art Gallery in 2015. Mungo Thomson has also exhibited at the Contemporary Art Gallery from October 1, 2013 to January 12, 2014 with Negative Space, an off-site work at the Yaletown-Roundhouse Station, Canada Line.
Mungo Thomson works conceptually in various media, such as video, film, sculpture and printed matter, he addresses the voids that exist within culture, the gaps, digressions and mistakes that exist and surround institutional space and everyday life.
TIME PEOPLE MONEY CRICKETS provides an insight into Mungo Thomson's work produced during the past several years. The book illustrates various projects such as Thomson's ongoing project from 2009, TIME, a series of drawings based on the evolution of the logo of Time Magazine and a series of large mirrors based on specific covers of the magazine. Another ongoing project is PEOPLE, Thomson produced a full-glossy magazine based on People Magazine that contains images of visitors looking at art in art exhibitions but with the art removed through Photoshop, these magazines are free takeaways during the exhibition. Lastly, CRICKETS is Thomson's collaboration with composer Michael Webster and consists of a transcription of field recordings of crickets from around the world created into a musical score for a 17-person orchestra.
The publication contains an introduction by Irene Hofmann, Phillips Director and Chief Curator at SITE Santa FE, an interview with the artist and Nigel Prince, Executive Director at the Contemporary Art Gallery, Vancouver and an essay by Martin Herbert. The publication contains 150 colour images.MORE
This artist bookwork is published on the occasion of the exhibition space that saw (platform for a performance in two parts) by Mike Nelson, a site-specific installation at a former cabaret theatre and dining hall located at Gartenstrasse 6 in the district Berlin-Mitte, which opened in 1905 and closed in 1934.MORE
This rare now 'out of print' publication was published on the occasion of the exhibition MIKE NELSON : I, IMPOSTOR, created for the British Pavilion at the 54th International Art Exhibition - la Biennale di Venecia, and includes an essay by Dan Cameron. Book concept by Mike Nelson and design by Secondary Modern.MORE
This publication is published by Buchhandlung WaltherKönig, Köln in conjunction with the exhibition Loop at Kunstmuseum Liechtenstein and includes essays by Will Bradley, Adam Dudak, Friedemann Malsch and Jan Verwoert.MORE
This publication is produced in conjunction with Erin Shirreff: Available Light, curated by Sandra Dyck and Jan Allen and presented at the Carleton University Art Gallery and the Agnes Etherington Art Centre, and Erin Shirreff: Pictures, curated by Jenifer Papararo and presented at the Contemporary Art Gallery. It includes essays by Sandra Dyck and Jan Allen and an interview with the artist by Jenifer Papararo.MORE
This full colour publication features an introduction by Ben Tufnell and an essay by Douglas Fogle, and was published on the occasion of the exhibition Photoworks, June 7 to August 25, 2012 by Haunch of Venison, London.MORE
Picturing 100 works made between 1969 and 2009, this publication categorizes Kay Rosen’s language works according to six conceptual and formal strategies that the artist has regularly employed: colour, sound, “anti-grammar,” letters, systems and patterns, and graphics.MORE
This publication accompanied the exhibition Sarah Browne, How To Use Fools Gold which was exhibited at the CAG, Ikon Gallery UK and Project Art Centre, Dublin and includes commissioned essays by Tessa Giblin, Curator of Visual Arts, Project Arts Centre, Dublin and artist Jeremy Millar, plus texts by graphic designer Chris Lee and anthropologist Marshall Sahlins.MORE
The publication A Model Society: Patterns and Thoughts contains Lopi knitting patterns that came from two years of conversation between the artist Sarah Browne and people living in Iceland. These knitting patterns contain some of the fragments of these discussions about Icelandic Society that were knitted into the fabric of sweaters and the book illustrates how to knit or adapt these sweaters for yourself. The project A Model Society was orginially commissioned by Site-ations International in 2006 and received further funding from the Arts Council of Ireland. Along with the knitting patterns this publication includes texts by Sarah Browne, Gisli Palsson, WV FanWriter and an interview conversation between Sarah Browne and Tim Moylan. Printed in a limited edition of 300.MORE
This book was published on the occasion of the exhibition Ireland Venice 2009, at the 53rd International Art Biennale, Venice, Italy curated by Caoimhin Corrigan. Ireland was represented by Sarah Browne, Gareth Kennedy and Kennedy Browne.
The publication includes essays by Tim Stott, Sarah Browne and J.K. Gibson-Graham. For more information go to: www.irelandvenice.ie.
Sarah Browne developed the artwork Lebensreform in Leitrim through a residency at Leitrim Sculpture Center, Ireland. Her work has been supported through Rhyzom, a collaborative research network funded by the European Commission. This publication includes contributions from Jackie McKenna, DBC Pierre aka Peter Finlay, Ullrich Kochel, Ronnie Close among others.MORE
This intimate publication focuses on Frances Stark's pivotal feature length video My Best Thing, a digital video animation, which traces the development of two sexual encounters that progress into conversations about film, literature, art, collaboration and subjectivity.
British curator Mark Godfrey captures the density of this recent work by Stark with an in-depth essay Twenty-First Century Art which considers the artist's use of online sex-chat rooms as vehicles for her creative process. Godfrey addresses Stark’s resolve in representing her broad and at times clashing interests from her recently found enthusiasm for the controversial dancehall musician Beenie Man to her homage for the highly respected feminist painter Sylvia Sleigh. In conveying the complexity of her interests Stark manages to imbue these commonly disparaged internet sites, as well as their users, with positive, productive and social characteristics. In Stark’s depiction, as Godfrey states, “strangers meet, communicate, share ideas rather than brand preferences, and change how each one sees the world.”
This book is co-published by Koenig Books, London, Contemporary Art Gallery, Vancouver, and the Walter Philips Gallery, Banff on the occasion of the exhibition of My Best Thing at Walter Phillips Gallery, Banff (Sept. 24 – Dec.11, 2011) and Contemporary Art Gallery, Vancouver (Feb. 3 – Apr. 8, 2012).MORE
This catalogue is the first publication devoted entirely to the work of Robert Orchardson, and includes a text by Matthew Rampley, and accompanies the Contemporary Art Gallery exhibition, Robert Orchardson, Endless façade, November 17, 2011 to January 15, 2012 and Endless façade at Ikon Gallery February 23 to April 25, 2011. Co-produced with Ikon Gallery, Birmingham, UK.MORE
This publication was produced to coincide with the exhibiton In The Near Future by Sharon Hayes, April 8 to June 5, 2011 at the Contemporary Art Gallery. Designed by The Future with texts by Jenifer Papararo and Nigel Prince.MORE
This publication was produced to coincide with the exhibition Beyond Guilt - The Trilogy by Ruti Sela and Maayan Amir, April 8 to June 5, 2011 at the Contemporary Art Gallery. Designed by The Future with texts by Jenifer Papararo and Nigel Prince.MORE
UNDERTHESUN, an artist publication by Roy Arden. was produced as part of his solo exhibition at the Contemporary Art Gallery, the publication documents the majority of the nearly one hundred works on view. It serves as a representation and record of the exhibition, as well as provides the artist with an opportunity to formally reconsider the excess of images, his reasons for selecting them and their relational context. Published on the occasion of the exhibition Roy Arden UNDERTHESUN at the CAG, January 28 to March 27, 2011. Photography by Scott Massey. Design Roy Arden and Mark Timmings.
Mimicking commercial advertising layouts, Arden's design is a cacophony of colour and image. The publication has a refined newspaper-like quality. Printed on large broadsheets folded down to loose sheets, each page opens into individual collage posters.
This publication was made possible with support from the City of Vancouver's 125th Anniversary Grants Program. The exhibition was sponsored by The Hamber Foundation.MORE
Portrait is the third and final in a series that uses the petit genres of landscape, still life, and portraiture to reflect the CAG's programming and to frame current tendencies in contemporary art. It includes texts by curator Glenn Alteen, film theorist Lisa Coulthard, art historian Gill Perry, and cultural theorist Helma Sawatzky, as well as a text by CAG curator Jenifer Papararo, and an interview with artist Elizabeth Zvonar. This publication includes the CAG exhibitions, Playing Homage, Lawrence Paul Yuxweluptun Neo-Native Drawings and Other Works, Elizabeth Zvonar On Time and Face Up.MORE
STILL LIFE was published in conjunction with the exhibition Triumphant Carrot: The Persistence of Still Life, and contains essays by Evan Lee, Jenifer Papararo and Trevor Mahovsky. Jenifer Papararo looks at the continued relevance of this genre and its relation to the development of the avant-garde. Also included are texts by two of the artists in the exhibition. Trevor Mahovsky draws parallels between recent theoretical interests in the everyday and the value of still life; and Evan Lee uses the dollar store to discuss the complex relations between the consumption of objects and what a still life represents.
This publication was produced from the exhibition An Invitation to An Infiltration, held at the Contemporary Art Gallery as part of the Cultural Olympiad Vancouver 2010, January 21 - February 28, 2010. The publication was assembled by Dexter Sinister. Contributions are included by Fia Backstrom, Lucy Clout, Hadley+Maxwell, Jonathan Middleton, Dexter Sinister, Holly Ward and Jordan Wolfson. The exhibition was curated by Eric Fredericksen. The publication includes the essay: Contemporary Art Versus Its Envelope by Thomas Crow.
The publication was edited by Jenifer Papararo, proofread by Snowden Snowden, variously designed by the exhibition's participants, assembled by Dexter Sinister, and coordinated by them together with Jeff Khonsary who printed the monochrome pages on Pacon Sulphite Paper using a RISO 3750 stencil printer at the Fillip offices in Vancouver, and who outsourced the lithographic colour pages to B & L Printworks, then collated and bound the lot in-house with Erin Marranca.
The covers are cut from strips of the screen printed wallpaper Bronzé by Dexter Sinister (2010) displayed in the gallery windows during the exhibition An Invitation to An Infiltration. The pattern of linked rings extends the extant range of heraldic cross-hatching, a medieval system for representing colour in black and white.
The half-title page is cut from one of three different colour variations of the poster produced for, and exhibited within, the exhibition by Jonathan Middleton as part of the work, Strange, the first time I've known of a Piano with Four legs. (Hey! I keep fallin' Down). The publication also includes an audio CD of the work GAME-SET-MATCH by Fia Backstrom. Photography by Aquiles Ascencion and Scott Massey.
The exhibition was co-presented by Contemporary Art Gallery and VANOC and was sponsored by the British Columbia Arts Council under the Unique Opportunities program.
Landscape is the first in a series of three publications that used the petit genres of landscape, portraiture and still life to reflect programming at the Contemporary Art Gallery which framed tendencies in contemporary art. Contributing writers include Michael Turner and Jenifer Papararo, as well as interviews between Tim Gardner and Stephen Waddell, and bgl and Adrian Blackwell. This publication includes the CAG exhibitions Bgl, Tim Gardner and Sentimental Journey.MORE
This Contemporary Art Gallery publication was produced to coincide with Shannon Oksansen's 2008 exhibition, Summerland. The publication includes the essay, A General Feel for Summerland by Jenifer Papararo and was designed by Jen Eby. The exhibition and the publication were sponsored by The Audain Foundation.MORE
This publication on artist Stephen Waddell accompanied an exhibition in 2008 which was a survey of the artist’s paintings, photographic studies and film ranging from 1995 to 2008 and was curated by renowned artist Roy Arden. The publication includes a foreword by Christina Ritchie and critical texts written by Katrin Blum and Roy Arden with colour reproductions of 25 art works.MORE
This catalogue, the first to be published on the work of Canadian collaborative team FASTWÜRMS, accompanied their exhibition DONKY@NINJA@WITCH at The Contemporary Art Gallery in 2008. This colour catalogue DONKY@NINJA@WITCH features a text by Jenifer Papararo, and an interview by Jennifer Fisher and Jim Drobnick.MORE
This book was published on the occasion of the launch of the Time Top Project public art work created by Jerry Pethick in October 2006 which was commissioned by Concord Pacific Group Inc. The publication contains a pull out booklet with a text by Margaret Pethick and a comic strip drawn by Neil Wedman. The publication contains an essay by Scott Watson and a forward by Jack Jeffrey.MORE
This book was published on the occasion of Chris Gergley's exhibition Copy Work held at the Contemporary Art Gallery on September 7 to November 8, 2007, curated by Jenifer Papararo.
This publication disregards the conventions of an exhibition catalogue instead mainly featuring texts by writers and art historians Steve Edwards, John O'Brian, and John Roberts, writer Maria Fusco, and curator Jenifer Papararo.
Williamm Lake Price and James Mudd, The Shattered Utopia by Steve Edwards
Statistical Ruscha, or Watching the Village Watchman -by John o'Brian
Writing Out Failure by Jenifer Papararo
The Logis of Deflation: The Avant-Garde, Lomography and the Fate of the Photographic Snapshot by John Roberts
Window Strikes by Maria Fusco
The publication is designed by Rodney Sanches and printed on Mohawk Superfine, 70lb Eggshell Text (white), set in Minion and bound at Northwest Book Binding.MORE
This issue of West Coast Line co-produced with the Contemporary Art Gallery was edited by Glen Lowry, Jenifer Papararo and Christina Ritchie presents new and commissioned work — images and text — by Antonia Hirsch, Steven Shearer, Donald Lawrence, Walter K. Lew, Celeste Olalquiga, Roy Arden, Erin Mouré, David Hoffos, Panya Clark Espinal, Bruce Baugh, Hans-Peter Feldmann, Michael Baers, Will Garret-Petts, Daniel Barrow, Denise Oleksijczuk, and Ernie Kroeger. Engaging the vernacular—word, image, performance, cultural history, space and memory — as practice and location is the thematic basis of the issue.MORE
This pocket sized, double sided, hardback cloth bound bookwork by artist Euan Macdonald brings together texts by Shevill Mathers, an amateur astronomer and Bill Bingham, an amateur historian. The publication was produced to coincide with the exhibition You are My Nebula/You are my Sunshine by Euan Macdonald at the Contemporary Art Gallery, December 1, 2006 to January 14, 2007. The bookwork is one of three works commissioned for the Contemporary Art Gallery. The book is composed in Hoefler Text & Times and printed on 115 gsm Yu Long paperstock.MORE
Released in conjunction with Hans Peter Feldmann’s first Canadian solo exhibition, Birgit is a new limited edition bookwork by Feldmann. The publication is comprised of 72 successive colour snapshots of a woman applying her make-up from beginning to end; the book is accompanied by a comprehensive text by the exhibition’s curator, Roy Arden.MORE
This catalogue documents Myfanwy MacLeod's first institutional solo exhibition, Where I Lived, and What I Lived For, at the Contemporary Art Gallery, January 20 to February 26, 2006. The publication includes essays by Francis McKee, An Empire of Ruins and Jenifer Papararo, New Icons of the Pastoral and an interview with the artist and Connie Butler.
Where I Lived, and What I Lived For, was sponsored in part by Glenfiddoch Distilleries.
This exhibition catalogue was published to accompany the exhibition Unterspiel cureated by Seamus Kealy and held at the Contemporary Art Gallery from July 1 to August 14, 2005. The exhibition and publication was co-produced with the Critical and Curatorial Studies Program at the University of British Columbia and Morris and Helen Belkin Art Gallery. Design by Jeff Khonsary.
This publication is out of print.MORE
ALEX MORRISON - GIVING THE STORY A TREATMENT is published by Contemporary Art Gallery, Vancouver, and Nicolaus Schafhausen, Frankfurter Kunstverein, Frankfurt am Main With a text by Lars Bang Larsen and an interview by Jeff Derksen, with texts in English and German. Giving the Story a Treatment is the first comprehensive publication on the Canadian artist Alex Morrison (*1971).
In his documentations of youth lifestyles, particularly the culture of skaters, Alex Morrison questions to what extent sub-cultural expressions can be considered authentic, especially in the face of strategies of staging and their commercialization by the media. The renowned Canadian writer Jeff Derksen and Danish art critic Lars Bang Larsen contribute penetrating perspectives into Morrison's work, linking it in a historical continuum with activist moments of recent history and contemporary events.
(...) I have always been interested in what forms radical or sub-cultural activities will inhabit once they eventually make their debut upon the greater cultural field. Perhaps, in these new forms, the message becomes buried under commodification and the particularities of critique lost through the move towards a greater generality and appeal to the largest demographic. In Free Room one question I sought to ask was: are these forms capable of carrying a viable critique? Or in simpler terms: which is more effective, direct action or cultural production? (Alex Morrison)
Published with the support of the Canada Council for the Arts, Foreign Affairs Canada and Künstlerhaus Bethanien.MORE
This publication was produced to coincide with the exhibition Damian Moppett: The Visible Work, curated by Jenifer Papararo, held at the Contemporary Art Gallery, March 18 to April 24, 2005. The publication was designed by Damian Moppett and Timmings & Debay (original design concept based on Nova Scotia Series: Source Materials of the Contemporary Arts, ed. by Benjamin H.D. Buchloch. In particular Carl Andre, Hollis Frampton: 12 Dialogues 1962-1963 (Halifax, NS: The Press of the Nova Scotia College of Art and Design and New York University Press, 1982). The publication contains essays by Jenifer Papararo, John Welchman and Nathaniel Heisler.MORE
This beautifully designed and important publication on the work of Christopher Williams was produced to coincide with his exhibition curated by Claudia Beck at the Contemporary Art Gallery in January 13 - March 6, 2005. It includes a forward by Christina Ritchie , an essay by John Miller Mechanization takes command: Modernization, Terminable and interminable and an additional pull out essay Some References for Christopher Williams by Claudia Beck.
The publication like William's work, is part straightforward exhibition catalogue and also part bookwork directed by Williams and impeccably designed by Yvonne Quirmbach.MORE
This publication was produced to coincide with Supernatural, an exhibition curated by Roy Arden featuring the work of Neil Campbell and Beau Dick, 12 March to 25 April 2004 at the Contemporary Art Gallery.
The work of these two artists would at first appear to be quite different. However, Supernatural proposes that we look beyond the obvious differences and examine some commonalities of intention, technique, and effect. In part, Supernatural aims to question the aesthetic apartheid that usually consigns First Nations art to the anthropological museum, providing an opportunity for serious consideration of the relationships between cultures and their traditions.MORE
This publication accompanies the exhibition Catalogue by Ron Terada, curated by Reid Shier and presented at the Contemporary Art Gallery, Vancouver, November 20, 2003 to January 3, 2004. The publication includes texts by Michael Darling, Jens Hoffmann, Reid Shier and Kelly Wood, design and drawings by Julian Gosper.MORE
Cabin Photographs was published to coincide with the exhibition by Scott McFarland at the Contemporary Art Gallery from May 9 to June 29, 2003. The publication includes the essays; Lavender Oil by Reid Shier, To The Management by William Wood and Coastal Cabin, A Consideration of the Rustic by Owen Kydd and Scott McFarland. and a forward by Christina Ritchie.MORE
This exhibition catalogue documents James Carl's 2003 exhibition at the Contemporary Art Gallery, Vancouver, and Open Space, Victoria. The publication includes an essay by Robin Peck, and Christina Ritchie's interview with the artist. The publication also includes a text contribution from Margrét H. Blöndal, a biography, and a number of exceptional full-page colour images of the artworks and installations.MORE
In collaboration with Vancouver’s Trapp Editions, the Contemporary Art Gallery published an artist’s bookwork by Isabelle Pauwels. Unfurnished Apartment for Rent details, in seven short screenplays, the interaction between a series of fictitious apartment dwellers. Forced through financial constraints to assemble furniture from the walls of their individual accommodations, these renters sacrifice more and more privacy as they cannibalize their dwellings for creature comforts. Pauwel’s bookwork was displayed in an installation designed by the artist in an exhibition at the Contemporary Art Gallery. Illustrations by Aaron Carpenter and Tyler Brett.
Produced and Edited by Trapp Editions, Vancouver. Published by The Contemporary Art Gallery, Vancouver. Edition of 500 selfcover copies. Edition of 50 cloth bound, hardcover, numbered and signed by the artist.MORE
Published in 2003 by The Contemporary Art Gallery and Tramway, Glasgow, Scotland this publication: Martin Boyce, This Place is Dreaming includes an interview between the artist and Vancouver writer Douglas Coupland and an essay Dead Modern by Douglas Coupland. Also included is an essay Sneaky Feelings by Raymond Macdonald.
This publication accompanied the two exhibitions, Our Love is like the Earth, the Sun, the Trees and the Birth, at the Contemporary Art Gallery, Vancouver, January 17 to March 2, 2003 and Our Love is like the Flowers, the Rain, the Sea and the Hours at Tramway, Glasgow, Scotland, November 22, 2002 to January 19, 2003.
The book is based on a monumental-sized print of the south side of 100 West Hastings by Stan Douglas. Douglas created a 66 x 427 cm panorama of epic scope, photographing each building and compositing the individual prints to assume a fantastic, impossible perspective. The print is reproduced in the book as a removable full-colour poster. The book is a homage to Ed Ruscha's fold-our book Every Building on Sunset Strip, 1966.
Edited by Reid Shier, with essays by Denise Blake Oleksijczuk, Neil Smith and Jeff Derksen, Jeff Sommers and Nick Blomley. This publication was also produced to coincide with the exhibition Journey Into Fear by Stan Douglas, September 12 to November 3, 2002 at the Contemporary Art Gallery.MORE
This publication accompanied the exhibition The Blacking Factory, Geoffrey Farmer curated by Reid Shier at the Contemporary Art Gallery from June 21 to August 11, 2002. The publication includes essays by Nanaimo based poet and critic Peter Culley and Reid Shier, with an introduction by Christina Ritchie and a letter of apology from Geoffrey Farmer (included below). The book includes two colour posters.
Letter of Apology
Dear Contemporary Art Gallery:
I am writing this letter to apologize for the apparent reduced form of this project as compared to my previous work:
1. First of all instead of producing a stack of hundreds of prop newspapers and having them available for people to take away, I found one in the back of a prop house in a cardboard box. (See page xx)
2. I had promised to actually blow out the east gallery windows, but due to time constraints, budgetary concerns, crew expenses (Fire engine $110/hour, Firefighter $65/hour, Officer $80/hour) and permits (Fees for a hydrant permit: $160.50) I was forced to have the explosion digitally created from a still photograph at GVFX and although they did a great job in creating the effect they used blue smoke instead of the green smoke that I had asked for. (Also I had asked to blow only one of the windows out, and they blew all of them out.)
3. I also had wanted the Trailer to be full of props, sets and research material which referred to Charles Dickens (hence the name The Blacking Factory) but was unable to complete this part of the project due to a couple of factors which I can not go into here because they are philosophical and personal.
4. I was also going to hire a crew to come in and age the exterior of the gallery using Soy Sauce (an industry standard) but I was unable to get permission to do this from the Strata of the building.
5. There was some talk of having 10,000 children march through the gallery in a single line but this was deemed not feasible.
6. I had also wanted to produce the musical Oliver using the staff of theContemporaryArtGallery as the main characters but the time commitment for this was unreasonable and the willingness of the staff was an issue.
I also wanted to apologize to the staff if I seemed stiff or detached during the installation it was only a way to protect myself emotionally and psychologically as the production of this piece was very time consuming and we ran into a lot of technical problems in trying to make the Trailer look real.
I hope that we will have the opportunity of working together again in the future.
This publication was a joint project of the Contemporary Art Gallery, The Southern Alberta Art Gallery and Kamloops Art Gallery to accompany the touring exhibition Dream Home by Renée Van Halm. The publication includes the essay How To Colour by The Office for Soft Architecture and an essay by Sherry McKay.MORE
This exhibition catalogue was published on the occasion of Brian Jungen's exhibition at the Contemporary Art Gallery from July 28 to September 23, 2001. The catalogue includes essays by Scott Watson and Lindsay Brown with a forward by Keith Wallace.MORE
Published on the occasion of the opening of the Contemporary Art Gallery in its new facility and the exhibition Ken Lum, May 4 to July 14, 2001. This publication features a forward by Keith Wallace, and essay Untitled(Ken) by Michael Turner.MORE
This is a publication on Ed Pien's two exhibitions Beyond Here, at The Contemporary Art Gallery and Transverser Vers at The Kamloops Art Gallery. Beyond Here, produced specifically for the Contemporary Art Gallery, was an installation that was both an inviting and unsettling experience. Transverser Vers, was a monumental installation that spoke to the unmediated narrative about the depths of memory and the corridors of fear.MORE
Published on the occasion of the opening of the Contemporary Art Gallery in its new facility and the exhibition Germaine Koh, May 4 to July 14, 2001. This publication features a forward by Keith Wallace, and essay Immanent Domain by Laura U. Marks.MORE
This book was published on the occasion of the exhibition Visual Stimulants that presented the work of three artists Angela Leach, Ken Singer and Jeremy Stanbridge at the Contemporary Art Gallery from September 9 to October 21, 2000. This publication contains a text by curator Keith Wallace.MORE
This book was published in conjunction with the exhibitions Stores presented at the Contemporary Art Gallery from February 26th to April 8th, 2000, and Deep Woods, presented at the Art Gallery of York University from May 28th to September 24th, 2000. This publication contains texts by Nancy Tousley, Lucy Hogg and Reid Shier. Out of print.MORE
This publication was produced to coincide with 3 separate exhibitions by Kelly Mark, 9 to 5 presented at the Art Gallery of Hamilton from January 15 to April 2, 2000, Messages at the Hamilton Artist's Inc. January 7 -February 5, 2000, and [four lines and a fifth line drawn through them] at the Contemporary Art Gallery from April 15 - May 27, 2000.
This book was produced on the occasion of the exhibition Quick aging pivoting city, curated by Petra Watson for the Contemporary Art Gallery at January 8 to February 19, 2000. It contains the essay Imaginary Displacement and the Facts of Metaphor by Petra Watson.MORE
This book was published on the occasion of the exhibitions NEUTRAL/BRAKES/STEERING at the Agnes Etherington Art Center from November 12 to December 24, 1998, and 22 oz. THUNDERBOLT at the Contemporary Art Gallery from March 27 to May 8, 1999. The publication contains an essay by Jim Drobnick and Jennifer Fisher.MORE
This richly illustrated book documents Indian-Thai Artist Navin Rawanchaikul's solo and collaborative projects he completed between 1993 to 1999. The publication contains texts, photographs, correspondence, video stills, drawings, comic strips and inserted objects: a postcard, a piece of cloth, a post-it paper with the question "what is art?" in the artist's handwriting and a comic book published on the occasion of the Sydney Biennale in 1998.MORE
This book was published on the occasion of the exhibition French Kiss from December 13, 1997 to January 31, 1998. The following artists are included in the exhibition and publication: Ghada Amer, Jean-Sylvain Bieth, Bernard Lallemand, Dany Leriche and Patrick Raynaud.MORE
This book is published on the occasion of the exhibition Wanda Koop: See Everything/See Nothing from February 14 to March 21, 1998 by the Contemporary Art Gallery Vancouver and contains an essay by Robin Laurence.MORE
This publication was produced on the occasion of the exhibition Nations in Urban Landscapes held at the Contemporary Art Gallery, October 28 to December 9, 1995 and at Oboro, Montreal in 1994. It includes texts by Marcia Crosby "Nations in Urban Landscapes" and "Lines, Lineage and Lies, or Borders, Boundaries and Bullshit" and Paul Chaat Smith "From Lake Geneva to the Finland Station" and includes a preface by Keith Wallace.MORE
This book is published on the occasion of the exhibition Landon Mackenzie : Saskatchewan Paintings from December 16, 1995 to February 3, 1996 by the Contemporary Art Gallery, Vancouver and contains an essay by Charlotte Townsend-Gault.MORE
This publication was published on the occasion of the exhibition Wana-na-wang-ong by Rebecca Belmore from October 30 to November 27, 1993 at the Contemporary Art Gallery. The publication includes an essay, 'The Language of Place' by Lee-Ann Martin and poetry by Florene Belmore. The publication was printed in an edition of 500 on Speckletone Oatmeal text and Kiana Natural text and cover and designed by Alex Hass.MORE
This publication was produced to coincide with the exhibition Some Detached Houses curated by Bill Jeffries, March 29 to April 22, 1989 at the Contemporary Art Gallery.This exhibition featured: Robin Collyer, Todd A Davis, Dan Graham, Bill Jones, Amy Jones, Robert Linsley, Warren Murfitt, Ed Ruscha, Margaret Naylor, Nancy Shaw, and Greg Snider. The publication features texts by Rodney Graham, Robert Kleyn, Robert Linsley, Jennifer Oille Sinclair, Robert Smithson, and Greg Snider.MORE