Locations of the broadsheet boxes to pick up a free copy of MISSIVES. Created by Patrick Staff and Robin Simpson, produced and presented by Contemporary Art Gallery, Vancouver. The broadsheet publication and screening project is supported by The British Council.MORE
The Vancouver Art/Book Fair is currently on from October 17th to 18th, presented by Project Space at the Vancouver Art Gallery. The two-day event is free and open to the public, and offers a chance to browse and purchase printed matter (as well as digital, experimental and performative forms of publication) from local, national and international artists. It also features performances, programs and other unique artist projects. Leading up to this weekend, Project Space also organized Artists’ Books Week, an ‘open-source’ style series of events. As part of this, the CAG hosted an artist talk by Vancouver-based artist Ho Tam, who discussed his recent publications, including his hotam and Poser series.
Ho Tam is interested in experimenting with the printed format. He uses this medium to explore issues relevant to him in an effectively humorous way, using the model of the mass-distributed magazine to mimic popular print culture. His first artist book, The Yellow Pages, confronts stereotypes often associated with Chinese culture. The Poser series are collections of photographs which showcase a specific group of people in a certain place, for example, images of men at the Canadian National Exhibition with their carnival game winnings—stuffed animals. His hotam series features self-titled issues that play with pun and humour, somehow always relating to the artist and his own lived experience. Issue 2, Other People’s Business, includes his abundant collection of business cards. Issue 5, Hot Asian Men, showcases the artist`s various photographs, clippings, and movie posters of just that.
On Thursday September 10th, Ryan Gander’s Make every show like it’s your last was a brilliant opening night. Drinking cocktails from his Artist’s Cocktails book and stumbling upon his surprising and sometimes hidden pieces, visitors were treated to a playful and entertaining show. The biggest hit of the night by far was Magnus Opus, Gander’s animatronic eyes that move around the room, blink, and offer a confused stare at onlookers. This lifelike work has now been posted by many on Instagram with the hashtag #RyanGander.
Instagram has been talked about lately as having a huge impact on the art world, on collecting and on artists’ careers. A recent article on Artsy pointed out how much art is collected, discovered and promoted on the app. A New York collector is quoted as saying “If your artwork isn’t represented on Instagram these days, do you exist?” In our digital society, many of us check Instagram multiple times a day and use it to stay up-to-date on our favourite public figures, new styles, current events, sports and for those of us that love art, art! It is a great way to access the happenings of the contemporary art world. Notable, and sometimes contentious photographer Richard Prince recently exhibited New Portraits at the Gagosian in New York, a show featuring blown-up screenshots on canvas of other’s Instagram images. There is an ongoing debate about whether Prince’s works are “stolen” or whether his use of the public application as a source for his work is completely fair. Clearly, Instagram has pervaded the functions of the art world and influences it considerably.
At the CAG, we use our own Instagram account (@cagvancouver) to share images from our exhibitions, artist-in-residence projects, openings, new art publications, behind the scenes at the gallery, from our archive, a sneak peek at future exhibitions and our learning events. It is wonderful to see others posting images from our exhibitions and events. It allows the followers of those posting the images to discover a new favourite artist or encourage them to come see the show. We also get an insight into visitors’ own thoughts on the exhibition.
Visit the CAG before November 11 to see Ryan Gander’s solo exhibition, Make every show like it’s your last. If you take a photo, be sure to tag #RyanGander and @cagvancouver so we can see it and share it, too!MORE