|The Wall Build Me Up/Tear Me Down
Provisional Structures and Contested Zones
September 15 November 18, 2007
Opening: September 14, 2007 7-10 PM
Curated by James Patten
Symposium on psychogeography and border culture:
Friday, October 12 - Sunday, October 14, 2007
As part of Architecture: A Borderline Case, a thematic series of exhibitions, projects and educational programmes, the AGW has organized two major group exhibitions of contemporary art. Build Me Up/Tear Me Down: Provisional Structures and Contested Zones includes the work of twelve international and Canadian artists who examine the city as a constantly changing arena of architectural and social activity.
Buildings seem so permanent that we often forget that they are really temporary structures, held together by social, political, and cultural activities. From photographs of trailers by Windsor-based photographer Brenda Francis Pelkey to the breathtaking image of the World Trade Centre disaster by New York artist Carolee Schneemann, this exhibition provides a range of perspectives on the ephemeral nature of the built environment.
Several artists, including Vancouver and Vienna-based Sabine Bitter and Helmut Weber and ThinkArchitecture from the UK, came to Windsor earlier in the year to create new work about our region.
Other artists, including William Christenberry, who is from Washington D.C., and the mysterious Object Orange, a Detroit collective, photograph abandoned buildings in various states of decay.
Botto and Bruno, from Turin, Italy, and Vancouvers Jayce Salloum, examine the provisional structures of street culture, disaffected youth, and the homeless.
The Wall features the work of eleven Canadian artists who refer to borders, boundaries, and walls in their work as sites of history, containment, oppression, and transition.
Living in a country in which most cities are along the border gives Canadians a unique perspective on national and political boundaries. No where is this more evident than in Windsor, Ontario where the United States almost surrounds the city across the Detroit River.
As Canada and the US reevaluate its border in response to perceived terrorist threats, many countries are building walls in response to territorial disputes, migration, and ideological differences.
New barriers are currently being built between Israel and the occupied Palestinian territories, the United States and Mexico, India and Pakistan.
In this exhibition, artists from the Windsor/Detroit region, including Chris McNamara and Marcel OGorman, draw on their everyday experiences crossing the border in their work.
José Seoane, who teaches at the University of Windsor, but lives in Toronto and Havana, incorporates peep holes into paintings that evoke a culture of surveillance.
Other artists in The Wall include Richard Dyck and Jennifer Stillwell (Winnipeg), Isabelle Hayeur (Montreal), Luis Jacob (Toronto), and Jamelie Hassan, Ron Benner, and Troy Ouellette (London, Ontario).
The AGW and the University of Windsors School of Visual Arts is organizing a three-day symposium on psychogeography and border culture starting on Friday, October 12 that will bring together a range of academics, architectural critics, and artists to discuss the build environment and urban planning in relation to Windsor/Detroit.
Lisa Rochon, architecturecritic for The Globe and Mail, will be delivering the keynote address. For more information, contact Nicole McCabe at AGW, 519-9767-0013 ext 134 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
A major publication will also be produced that will document all the Borderline Case projects, featuring the work of twenty-five Canadian and international artists and architects, along with texts by ten writers including: Dr. Gloria House (Detroit), Dr. Veronika Mogorody, James Patten, and Dr. Lee Rodney (Windsor), Jeff Derksen (Vancouver), ThinkArchitecture (London, UK), and Robert Thill (New York).