Over the last few months, local film and dance artist, Kemi Craig (also Victoria’s newly selected Artist in Residence, 2022/24) has been hosting the Blackspace Sci-Fi Club at the AGGV. This exciting in-person series has been unfolding in conjunction with Kemi’s AGGV project Blueprints for the Afrofuture, which has (so far) featured a variety of virtual offerings and one in-person evening of sound and music with Hidden Variable.
By Marina DiMaio, Digital & Print Assets Coordinator.
Back in 2018, pretty much fresh out of grad school, I found myself at the beginning of my very first job at the Art Gallery of Greater Victoria. Through my own multidisciplinary art making, I’ve always been interested in contemplative practices, and the idea of creative process as spiritual practice. So, with the support of an Early Career Development Grant from the BC Arts Council, I had the incredible opportunity to extend and deepen the artistic research that I began exploring as an MFA student at UVic by contributing as a curatorial assistant at the AGGV to a multiphase project, by curator Haema Sivanesan, considering Buddhism as an artistic methodology.
By Mel Granley, Guest Curator at the AGGV.
June is recognized as National Indigenous History Month. National Indigenous Peoples Day is a holiday celebrated in Canada every year on the 21st of June. This holiday was officially established in 1996 and is intended to “recognize the history, heritage and diversity of First Nations, Inuit, and Métis peoples in Canada” according to Canada.ca. I ask myself, what does this day mean to me? I am a Métis and Ukrainian person living in Canada, and this day brings mixed feelings of pride and concern.
Jaimie Isaac, AGGV’s Chief Curator, is focused on expanding AGGV exhibitions to support and hold space for many voices, experiences, and perspectives. She aims to create a trajectory of inclusiveness, regional reciprocity, and relevance within interdisciplinary practices. As we examine art and artists in our collection and in our exhibitions, Issac’s vision is to create interesting, new, and important conversations that encourage contemporary thought.
On February 10, 2022 the AGGV hosted a virtual online conversation with the curators of the exhibition Denyse Thomasos: Odyssey, Gaëtane Verna, Director of The Power Plant Contemporary Art Gallery, and Sarah Milroy, chief curator at the McMichael Canadian Art Collection. They were joined by Victoria based award winning novelist Esi Edugyan who contributed to the exhibition publication. This conversation with Verna, Milroy and Edugyan was an opportunity to hear about Thomasos from a range of perspectives.
By Marina DiMaio, Digital & Print Assets Coordinator
Howie Tsui’s solo exhibition Retainers of Anarchy has come and gone from the AGGV Galleries, but the artist’s immersive storytelling environments continue to live on in a digital installation on our website — through a Collaborative GIF Mosaic!
Inspired by Tsui’s referential video collage, Threading Needles through the Pupil, previously installed in the exhibition, this Collaborative GIF Mosaic offers the opportunity for artists and anyone from the community to engage with Tsui’s interest in visual sampling, memory and nostalgia which permeate his recent media work.
By Ross Neasloss Jr. (Kitasoo Xai Xai’s Nation)
The Holding Ground exhibit, has been a monumental experience for me. Working with so many Indigenous folks from all across turtle island. We met bi-weekly to share stories, and hold space for our deep emotions and connections to the land and each other. Along with my personal journey of land based healing, I received some wonderful words and messages during those times. These messages I got, I do not carry lightly, as they deserve to be held with care and compassion.
By Mel Granley, Guest Curator
Emily Carr has become almost synonymous with the Pacific Northwest; her work being displayed year-round in different exhibition contexts to ensure the satisfaction of visitors to the AGGV. This drive to see her work is directed by the idea of checking off a list of great and thoroughly known artists within the artistic canon. The issue? The “art canon” is heavily Euro-Western centered and very keenly demonstrates a bias for settler-European art, while largely failing to acknowledge the artistic merits of historic and contemporary BIPOC artists.
By Marina DiMaio, Digital Potentials Advisory Coordinator
Sometimes the projects that we do at the AGGV do not always ‘fit’ within the standard white-cubed gallery spaces you will find in our building on Moss Street. Sometimes our curatorial projects take place in remote communities, deep in the basement archives, in collaboration with other arts institutions, or in this case, within a kind of algorithmic museum!
Vancouver-based artist Howie Tsui (Tsui Ho Yan / 徐浩恩) is currently in the process of installing Retainers of Anarchy at the AGGV. In anticipation of the opening, on June 12, Tsui spoke with us about his art practice in an e-interview.