artists & participants
Territory is a visual art project concerned with mapping urban experience, civic space and contested terrains. The project includes installations at Artspeak and Presentation House Gallery as well as in public sites around Vancouver, guided walks, lectures, screenings and a publication.
Featured artists: Jennifer Allora & Guillermo Calzadilla (San Juan, Puerto Rico), Roy Arden (Vancouver), The Atlas Group/ Walid Raad (Beirut/New York), Yael Bartana (Amsterdam), Cao Fei (Guangzhou), Germaine Koh (itinerant), Gonzalo Lebrija (Guadalajara), Jayce Salloum (Vancouver), Seripop (Montreal), Ron Terada (Vancouver).
The works in Territory involve navigating real and imagined territories – geographic, political, economic and social. The exhibition expands on the notion of derive, or wandering, as a way to investigate urban environments. Cities, here, are understood as essentially unstable and fragmentary cartographies where spatial collisions result from conditions such as rapid urban development and the privatization of civic spaces. The works in Territory reveal how cultural mythologies, both local and global, are scripted into built environments and determine human interactions. They point to the social impact of the often invisible boundaries delineated by political conflict, gentrification, security, and communication systems, drawing attention to the intersections of psychological, social and physical spaces.
Commissions for the public domain include photographic billboards by Roy Arden, roaming mobile signboards by Ron Terada, soil transplants by Germaine Koh, photographs by Jayce Salloum dispersed through various public distribution systems, and silkscreens postered around the city by Seripop. Found in the recesses and transient spaces of the city, these artworks disturb boundaries between private and public domains, between personal acts and communal life. Encountered by chance, these ephemeral works temporarily lay claim to civic terrains and reference vernacular street culture. During the week of July 17, a landscaped topiary “sign” by Ron Terada, posters by Seripop and images by Jayce Salloum in transit shelters will be launched.
At Presentation House Gallery five artists offer poetic interpretations of the common conditions that impact cities around the world. Footage of an industrial port in China’s Pearl River Delta by Jennifer Allora & Guillermo Calzadilla, is a meditation on the networks of global economies. Yael Bartana interprets civic unrest through manipulated footage of demonstrations by Israeli and Palestinian youth. Documentary material of post-civil war Beirut by the Atlas Group/Walid Raad questions the representation of urban ruination and political violence. Gonzalo Lebrija considers the potential violence of collective behaviour in street culture. Cao Fei tracks the daily routines of a milkman in Guangzhou. At Artspeak are two of her media works that are also concerned with urban fantasies and cultural mythologies.
Screenings at Vancity Theatre, 1181 Seymour Street in downtown Vancouver. A program of films and media works concerned with urban experience. Working with footage from cities around the globe, these international artists present urban environments as complex psychological spaces where dream states and harsh reality are intertwined.
July 19, 7 – 9 pm, Cao Fei will discuss her practice, followed by screenings of her recent films “Father” and “Milkman”. July 20, 7 – 9 pm, a two-hour program of films and media works by Yael Bartana, David Hammons, Harun Farocki, Gordon Matta-Clark, and David Zink Yi, amongst others.
On Saturdays beginning at 2 pm. for the duration of the exhibition will be Guided Walks that map the city from literary, visual art and architectural perspectives, bringing to light some of its hidden narratives. Michael Barnholden animates the events of two downtown riots, Neil Wedman interprets the history of sidewalks, and Annabel Vaughan traces threads of Vancouver’s original urban grid.
Launch of new public works: July 17 Screenings: July 19 and 20 Cao Fei Lecture: July 19 Guided Walks: July 15, 22, 29, August 5
WALKING TOURS / FILM SCREENINGS
Organisation: Artspeak (www.artspeak.ca); Presentation House Gallery,
Kuratoren: Melanie O´Brian, Helga Pakasaar
mit Allora & Calzadilla, Roy Arden, The Atlas Group / Walid Ra´ad, Yael Bartana, Cao Fei, Germaine Koh, Gonzalo Lebrija, Jayce Salloum, Seripop , Ron Terada