Kingston’s Modern Fuel Gallery welcomed Toronto-based contemporary curator, Yan Wu, to curate the gallery’s current exhibit Another Space Gallery. The exhibit invites viewers to explore Modern Fuel’s historical gallery space and confront their own perceptions of space.
Another Space Gallery is the final exhibition that Modern Fuel will hold at its current location on Queen St., as they’ll be relocating to the Tett Center for Creativity and Learning later this year.
Wu paid tribute to Modern Fuel’s history when curating the 16th Annual Juried Exhibition by creating an exhibit with the same name as the gallery’s past identity: Another Space Gallery.
“Yan came for a site visit prior to the submission deadline and was inspired by the history of our space,” said Emily Marshall, Modern Fuel’s artistic director.
Modern Fuel is a local non-profit gallery that exhibits contemporary art, from painting and sculptures to video installations and photography. The gallery supports contemporary artists through exhibition, discussions and mentorship opportunities.
Modern Fuel has been a part of Kingston’s art community since 1977. The gallery emerged as Kingston Artists’ Association Inc. and amalgamated with Another Space Gallery two years prior to opening. The gallery then moved to its current location at 21 Queen Street and in 1995 was renamed as the Modern Fuel Artist-Run Centre.
Kingston artist Ben Darrah’s painting, Orange Chair, complements the exhibitions’ concentration on the history of Modern Fuel’s space. The painting depicts one of the gallery’s infamous orange fold-out chairs that have been used for artist talks, workshops and presentations for decades. As they wont be included in the move, the chairs are now a sentimental symbol of the gallery.
The exhibition gives the artistic members of Modern Fuel the opportunity to submit their work for display. From these submissions, Wu selected seven artists that she felt best represented the blurring of real and imagined spaces.
“Yan used this exhibition as a means of creating a fictional gallery setting known as Another Space Gallery, as well as a way of approaching space from a conceptual point of view,” Marshall said.
Upon entry into the show, viewers are immediately confronted by the art as it invades and manipulates their sense of space. Kingston artist Joan Scaglione’s installation of wooden 2×4 frames, Ascent-Descent, contributes to this experience. The piece whimsically wraps around the doorway and almost touches the viewer upon entry.
“I think there are so many guidelines and rules to follow when you typically enter a gallery, and contemporary art can challenge that for us,” General Director, Megan McNeil said.
Each of the show’s pieces invite viewers to interact on a daring and intimate level.
“Whether by walking through Fraser Radford’s Ceremony, imagining yourself within Rachel Kalpana James’s Studio or getting up close to appreciate the intimacy of Christine Dewancker’s Collage Magnets,” Marshall said.
Another Space Gallery at Modern Fuel runs until August 9.
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