Monday, June 30, 2014

Jesse Birch

An exhibition I am looking forward to this fall will take place a couple hours up the road from the AGGV: Black Diamond Dust at the Nanaimo Art Gallery.

The curator of this exhibition is former Western Front Exhibitions director/curator Jesse Birch who, a few months back, took over as interim Executive/Artistic Director of the NAG while Julie Bevan is on paternal leave.

During his time at the Western Front, Birch mounted a number of thoughtful exhibitions, one of which, Edible Glasses, I reviewed last year for Canadian Art. Another project Birch helped to initiate is Scrivener's Monthly, "a series of public presentations that explore the space between material practices and spoken words: a periodical that talks."

In his description of Black Diamond Dust, Birch writes:

The artists in Black Diamond Dust look toward forgotten or under-acknowledged histories, while considering both local contexts and the forms of cultural expression that surround global industrial practices. From sculpture, to video, to folk song, Stephanie Aitken, Raymond Boisjoly, Peter Culley, Devon Knowles, Jerry Pethick. Kerri Reid, Scott Rogers and others employ a wide range of creative approaches to articulating the contemporary resonance of material pasts.

Tomorrow I will visit with Birch and hopefully find out what else he has in store for us during his time at the NAG.

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