…and then the city told itself the same old stories

...and then the city told itself the same old stories

For the first time in over 25 years McIntosh Gallery and Forest City Gallery have joined forces to bring the latest contemporary art to audiences in London and further afield. Together, the two galleries have published …and then the city told itself the same old stories by Broken City Lab. This publication documents our recent exhibit at Forest City Gallery, through which we aimed to explore the narratives around London, Ontario. Based on a research project we initially developed in Windsor, Ontario, our exhibition revolved around a curiosity about locality and the ways in which it becomes shaped through shared experience and interwoven narratives.

Both galleries have a long history in London Ontario. McIntosh Gallery, the oldest university art gallery in Ontario, was founded in 1942. Forest City Gallery, among the oldest artist run centres in Canada, was founded in 1973. Their last collaborative project was a 1987 exhibition curated by Bob McKaskell about Marcel Duchamp.

This publication is also the first publication of the McIntosh Gallery Curatorial Study Centre (MGCSC) founded in 2010. With the financial support of the Beryl Ivey McIntosh Gallery Fund, MGCSC includes a resource centre dedicated to curatorial practices and publishes innovative research on museology and contemporary art. …and then the city told itself the same old stories is a co-publication of Forest City Gallery and the McIntosh Gallery Curatorial Study Centre. We gratefully acknowledge the financial support of the Beryl Ivey McIntosh Gallery Fund, which has provided funding for this publication. The McIntosh Gallery wishes to acknowledge the annual financial support of the Canada Council for the Arts, the Ontario Arts Council, The University of Western Ontario and Foundation Western. Forest City Gallery wishes to acknowledge the annual financial support of the Canada Council for the Arts, the Ontario Arts Council, the London Arts Council and the City of London.

If you’d like a hardcopy, we’d recommend getting in touch with Forest City Gallery or the McIntosh — we’re fairly certain they have some extra copies. Or, you can also download the PDF version of the publication.

Installing at Forest City Gallery

We spent the weekend in London, Ontario. We were installing for our upcoming exhibition at Forest City Gallery, while also briefly wondering about what it would be like to not do site specific work. Anyways, you should plan to come to the opening on September 9th!

We’re working on an installation using our “…and then the city” framework for exploring and unfolding the layers of narrative that go into shaping a place. We’ve pulled together some historical overviews of London, but have really enjoyed using an online questionnaire to hear about some of the narratives on the ground here. Huge thanks to Forest City Gallery and London Fuse for helping to spread the word. All of the answers have fed into the installation in some way, so it’s been a really effective way to get to some of the overarching stories about this city.

The show will run until October 21, 2011, and, in the meantime, what’s more fun than a peak of the install process?

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A Set of Informal Questions about London, Ontario

We want to know about London, Ontario.

We’re doing an exhibition at Forest City Gallery, opening in September, and we’re looking into the wide range of narratives that go into constructing a place — the architecture, the headlines, the people, the memories, the relationships, the rumours — and we’re hoping you can help us out.

Whether you’re a longtime resident,  someone who just moved in, or even if you’ve only ever visited London, Ontario, we want to hear about it all.

So, just fill out the form below, tell us some stories, and we’ll work with all of this for our exhibition.

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Evolve or Die: CMA Conference

I’ll be heading up to London, Ontario on Thursday, April 14 to speak on a panel with some incredible people as part of the Canadian Museum Association’s Annual Conference, appropriately titled, Evolve or Die!. I’m pumped to get to reconnect with Andrew Hunter and Andrew Lochhead, and to finally meet Yael Filipovic. Not familiar with these folks? You should be.

The details:

The Social, Political, and Local: The Power of Place

Moderator: Yael Filipovic, Foreman Art Gallery, Bishop’s University
Panelists:Andrew Hunter, Dodolab & Proboscis; Justin Langlois, Broken City Lab, Andrew Lochhead, Workers Arts and Heritage Center

Embracing new roles, forging new relationships, and charting new territory on the notion of place has proven to facilitate new kinds of relationships with communities that allow for increasingly socially responsible work within our institutions. Through a dialogue that explores the critical relationships, the panelists have taken with the notion of place, this discussion will engage in unpacking the politics at play in work engaged with local spaces, communities, and histories and how this plays a part in a broader role we may be asked to play as facilitators of social change at local and regional levels.

And, afterwards, we’ll be meeting with some folks in London who are working to make that city better — will be a great day!