Date: Exhibition: November 5th – December 17th; Opening Reception: Saturday Nov. 5th, 4-7pm
Location: Access Gallery, 222 East Georgia Street
“I have a dream today!” – Martin Luther King Jr.
“And so the three possibilities I have mentioned have always stood before man whenever he has encountered an Other: he could choose war, he could fence himself in behind a wall, or he could start up a dialogue.” – Ryszard Kapuścinski
Access Gallery presents Paragraph of Possibility – a public art project by Vancouver-based artist Tonik Wojtyra.
Paragraph of Possibility takes intellectual shape as a collaborative writing exercise and public art sculpture. Wojtyra has worked to shape the project with the imaginations of the residents of Ross House, participants of a drop-in-art class at the Urban Native Youth Association (UNYA), Bombast Furniture, and the staff of Access Gallery. Weaving these strands of communities, Wojtyra’s exhibition is a milestone in a potentially never-ending narrative identifying our collective dreams.
Paragraph of Possibility was written primarily working with two disparate communities in Vancouver: the residents of Ross House and the Monday night drop-in-art class at the Urban Native Youth Association. Conversations around everyday activities such as dinners, classes and art-making were formed collaboratively into a text. The written work asserts the potential of love and dreams over the power of fear and politics; it will be distributed throughout Vancouver as a poster.
The installed exhibition at Access Gallery creates a further space for collaboration and represents the paragraph aesthetically. Wojtyra has produced a series of works in response to the text of the paragraph including a collaborative sculpture with UNYA and a round-table with Bombast’s Russell Baker. The table serves to extend the project’s dialogue to a wider audience via a series of round-table discussions developed with Access Gallery’s Director Shaun Dacey. The forum series aims to discuss the future of our global imaginary, public space, our youth, local community and Art. Oscillating between the intimately local and the publicly global, the round-tables will address the roles artists play in communities like the DTES.
Saturday, November 26th at 5pm
This roundtable ponders questions surrounding the concept of community.
What is a community? What isn’t? Why? Why not? How do we build it? What are the best tools? What’s most important?
Charles Haynes / Landlord, Ross House
Sharon Belli / Assistant Director, Carnegie Centre
Andrew Pask / Community Planner, City of Vancouver
Friday, December 9th at 7pm
The next roundtable ponders questions surrounding art’s role in the gentrification of the DTES/Chinatown.
What is gentrification? What positive roles can artists and galleries play in the DTES/Chinatown community?
With invited guests:
Ivan Drury / Carnegie Community Action Project, Board Member of the DTES Neighbourhood Council
Cecily Nicholson / Writer
Russell Baker / Bombast Owner/Designer
The roundtables are focussed on our dreams, possibilities for our “community” and are collegial conversations open to all. With each roundtable, emerging artist Malika Montague will offer her Soup Kitchen project. Montague is preparing fresh vegetarian soup and snacks from scratch in the gallery and serving it free. Donations of food are greatly appreciated.
Friday, November 25th at 10pm
Amerikino is a series of screenings examining the bankrupt American Dream through America’s own silver screen. The series starts with Jim Jarmusch’s Dead Man (1995). On the run after murdering a man, accountant William Blake encounters a strange Indian named “Nobody” who prepares him for his journey into the spiritual world. Popcorn and snacks will be served.
Monday, December 5th at 7pm
Amerikino continues with Don Argott’s Art Of The Steal (2009). A documentary following the struggle for control of art collector Albert C. Barnes’ 25 billion dollar collection of modern and post-impressionist art. Popcorn and snacks will be served.
Stay tuned for upcoming roundtables and screenings.
With support from the City of Vancouver’s 125th Anniversary Grants Program and the participation of the Government of Canada.