Visual Arts News from the Vancouver Art Gallery Library, January 30, 2014

Vancouver

Canada’s first boutique hotel designed with Aboriginal arts to open in Vancouver this May. “Six aboriginal artists have teamed up with six interior design firms to turn 18 suites into the city newest boutique hotel, one designed for tourists looking for unique higher-end accommodation in downtown Vancouver. Scheduled to open in May, Skwáchays Lodge is being billed as the country’s first aboriginal arts hotel.” The artists and designers creating the rooms in Skwáchays Lodge are: Corrine Hunt and BBA Design Consultants Inc, Clifton Fred and B+H Chil Design, Lou-Anne Neel and Inside Design Studio Inc, Sabina Hill and Mark Preston and MCM Interiors Ltd, Richard Shorty and Porada Design Group, and Jerry Whitehead and Portico Design Group. Vancouver Sun, January 29, 2014

Robson Street pedestrian plaza seeks designers. Vancouver is, once again, planning on shutting down a portion of downtown Vancouver to allow for pedestrian-only traffic this summer. VIVA Vancouver—a group responsible for modifying city streets into public spaces used for art, music, markets, and community-building—will transform the 800 block of Robson Street between the Vancouver Art Gallery and Provincial Law Courts into a pedestrian plaza from July to September. Past winners include Hapa Collaborative, which created 2013’s Corduroy Road; Matthew Soules, Amber Frid-Jimenez, and Joe Dahmen, who designed 2012’s beanbag-filled Pop Rocks; and Loose Affiliates, who won the first competition with their orange-wave design Picnurbia. Georgia Straight, January 25, 2014

Museum of Anthropology flooded after water main breaks at UBC. A broken water main sent water flooding into the Museum of Anthropology at the University of British Columbia. Initial reports indicate that the museum’s collection was not damaged. Georgia Straight, January 29, 2014

Gary Taxali | Shanti Town. Canadian artist and illustrator Gary Taxali announces his solo show, Shanti Town, as the first of Canadian Auction House, Waddington’s series of Pop Up retail exhibitions Ion Magazine, January 30, 2014

Paint What You Know // An Interview with Fiona Ackerman. “Rang­ing from Abstrac­tion to Real­ism, Fiona Ack­er­man pur­sues a highly diver­si­fied and method­i­cal paint­ing prac­tice. An inven­tor of new real­i­ties, Ackerman’s work inves­ti­gates her own paint­ing his­tory, as well as those of oth­ers. Exper­i­men­tal yet deeply philo­soph­i­cal, Ackerman’s paint­ings blur our under­stand­ings of real­ity and chal­lenge how we per­ceive space.” Sad Magazine, January 2014

Surrey, B.C.

Surrey Art Gallery’s (Da bao) serves up new meaning for takeout. “Chinese takeout is a wonderfully familiar trope in popular culture… Takeout signals a temporarily displaced or provisional condition, a sense of making-do. It also signifies exchange—delivery and reception. In (Da bao)(Takeout), recently opened at the Surrey Art Gallery, take-away food is a metaphor for the import and export of culture, people, and ideas between East and West generally, and between China and Canada more specifically.” Georgia Straight, January 28, 2014

Calgary

Exposure photography festival keeps jumping boundaries after 10 years. “Ten years ago, Exposure: Calgary Banff Canmore Photography involved six or seven galleries and a handful of artists. Now, the annual celebration of all things photographic has spread its wings into every imaginable space. Photography from local artists such as George Webber and Dianne Bos will sit alongside that of Edward Burtynsky and Fred Herzog among others. But it will no nostalgia trip. The majority of work in Decade will be new.” Calgary Herald, January 29, 2014

Winnipeg

Finding his light. Highlighting recent works by Eli Bornstein, one of the Prairie provinces’ most influential senior artists, An Art at the Mercy of Light, the exhibition shows that even austere, highly refined abstract works can reflect a heartfelt engagement

Toronto

Counterintelligence: Declassifying the Shadowy Realm of Art and Military Intelligence. Complex, dense and far reaching, the artworks, documents and other ephemera assembled by Berlin-based Canadian artist Charles Stankievech for his latest curatorial project at the Justina M. Barnicke Gallery, “Counterintelligence,” begin to map a nuanced diagram of the (often surprising) interrelations between art and the military, state-controlled intelligence and deftly played acts of resistance. Canadian Art, January 29, 2014

Seattle

Super Bowl wager revised “It was to be a lighthearted cultural exchange between the museums of Seattle and Denver as their football teams prepare to meet in the Super Bowl. But the Seattle Art Museum now says it will not loan a mask by a British Columbia First Nation to the Denver Museum if the Seahawks lose to the Broncos on Sunday. The Nuxalk (new-halk) Nation of Bella Coola have asked the museum not to loan the mask in conjunction with the Super Bowl. If the Seahawks lose, the museum says it will instead send Denver a six-panelled Japanese screen with a picture of a powerful eagle with outstretched wings.” Vancouver Sun, January 29, 2014

Detroit

DIA pledges to raise $100 million for art, Detroit pension rescue fund. The Detroit Institute of Arts has pledged to raise $100 million for the federally mediated rescue fund to shore up municipal pensions, prevent the forced sale of any of the museum’s irreplaceable masterpieces and spin off the city-owned museum to an independent nonprofit. Detroit Free Press, January 29, 2014

Foundation pledges for Detroit pensions, art rise to $370 million. “Foundations seeking to protect Detroit’s public pensions and its art museum in the city’s bankruptcy process raised their pledge total to $370 million on Tuesday with the addition of a $40 million commitment from the W.K. Kellogg Foundation.” Reuters, January 30, 2014

New York

In Rare Public Forum, Architect Defends Decision to Take Down Former Folk Art Museum. An architect typically doesn’t go before the public to defend a private project. But on Tuesday night Liz Diller of Diller Scofidio & Renfro stood before a crowd of 650 people, many of them her peers, to explain in detail the six-month process by which her firm tried to save the former home of the American Folk Art Museum before deciding it was impossible. New York Times, January 29, 2014

On View | Frank Lloyd Wright’s Love-Hate Relationship With the American City. The exhibition “Frank Lloyd Wright and the City: Density vs. Dispersal,” which opens this Saturday at the Museum of Modern Art, examines the legendary architect’s feelings about urbanism through his plans for a horizontal anti-metropolis he called Broadacre City, a lifelong project that some consider to have been a blueprint for suburbia.New York Times, January 29, 2014

Los Angeles

By Design | In L.A., Blurring the Line Between Art and Housewares. It’s no surprise that many sculptors have a yen for making furniture. After all, the tools are right within reach, and the process isn’t that different. In Los Angeles, which has a long history of furniture manufacturing and an abundance of interior spaces to fill, a growing number of young artists are making forays into the realm of domestic utility. New York Times, January 29, 2014

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