Featured Artists: Deanna Bowen, Eugenio Salas, and Public Studio (Eshrat Erfanian + Elle Flanders + Tamira Sawatzky)


Art Gallery of York University
Toronto, Ontario
January 19 – March 13, 2011

Curated by Emelie Chhangur, Suzanne Carte, and Michael Maranda

This was a project in flux. This was a project about flux. This project was experimental.

Our aim was to make visible artistic inquiry, particularly the ephemeral nature of the groundwork of research-based practices and the setting up of possibilities for the artist to enact activisms within an institutional framework.

The CIA was a challenge to the contemporary art institution as much as it is a vehicle for extending the influence of contemporary art practices to wider institutional frameworks.

The CIA was a necessary extension of the AGYU’s commitment to learning from and collaborating with artists but to new purposes, ones that can transform the function of contemporary art’s institutional frameworks.

We wanted to invent a new public engaged with artistic process as method and not as means to a visible end.

The Centre for Incidental Activisms was there to support the development and articulation of an artist’s idea, but not necessarily its material outcome. We know that the artistic outcome can have many different activisms outside of the objects created by artists. Questions, not answers.

As an unconventional project it required an unconventional approach: this was not exhibition making even if it did happen in an art gallery.