September 13, 2009 08:51 PM

Vancouver Art Gallery

Last week I went to the Vancouver Art Gallery. My main objective was to catch ‘Andreas Gursky: Werke/Works 80-08’ and ‘Stan Douglas: Klatsassin’ before they closed. As an added bonus I got to see ‘Two Visions: Emily Carr and Jack Shadbolt’. Since I am attending Emily Carr as a graduate student in Visual Arts, it was nice to see some work by the university’s namesake.

The Gursky exhibit was my favorite and I was pleased to see some of his work presented in a smaller format than normal. Although I enjoy his work when it is printed big, I really enjoyed being able to see the smaller prints all at once.

I was not at all familiar with Stan Douglas’ work and was curious. I didn’t understand why the movie ‘Pursuit, Fear, Catastrophe, Ruskin, BC, 1992’ wasn’t the same length as the Schoenberg piano score, but the player piano definitely added drama to the spectacle. I stayed to watch several scenes from ‘Klatsassin’ and was happy to re-view the portraits of the movie’s characters on the gallery wall outside the black box. I am not convinced that a gallery or museum is the best environment for a movie with the short scenes played in a random order; I think I would really be intrigued seeing this play in a more informal setting, like a bar or cafe. The broadsheet that accompanied the exhibit was brilliant; God and the Devil were mentioned numerous times in accounts from the era!

The Dutch exhibit was far too crowded for me to be able to really enjoy. But one thing that wasn’t crowded and that was amazing to see was the camera obscura. I’ve only read about it and had never seen it in person - pretty cool.

Things about VAG that aren’t all that great.
1 - Tickets to the Stan Douglas artist talk on Friday night were $30 (!) with no student discount.
2 - The bicycle rack is terrible. One can only secure the back tire of one’s bicycle to a small ring embedded in the cement. There isn’t a way to secure the frame of the bike or the front tire. Ugh.

link | category: Vancouver

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