Beyond White Boxes

Jennifer Crighton
Sep 11, 2013 7:47PM

I've always had a strong interest in artworks that happen outside of the gallery, or in some way subvert the gallery context. I like the way in which art can transform our perception of public and private spaces, making us see them in completely new ways. This can be especially effective in a context where people do not usually view art. Artwork can have a transformative and somewhat cathartic effect on spaces that are caught in a limbo between one use and another. 

Because artists are by nature opportunists, they often see unused or under-utilized spaces as unique chances to create creative space. This can been seen most markedly in the rising popularity of a new breed of ambitious and very contemporary guerilla street art internationally, and also through number of artists that are using abandoned or condemned spaces as the canvas for their work. To me this work represents the delicious and uncontrollable urge to colour outside of the lines, too fill in the empty spaces with the unexpected, the interesting and the beautiful. 

I have recently been involved in two pre-demolition art installations  here in Calgary, Wreck City, and the upcoming Phantom Wing. Here are a number of projects that have really inspired me recently in thinking about how to work outside of the conventional white box:

Ian Strange - Suburban

Bill FitzGibbons - LightRails

Heather Benning - The Dollhouse

Gordon Matta Clark - Office Baroque

Art League Houston  - Vortex House

Roger Hiorns - Seizure

Anna Schuleit Haber - Bloom

Marjan Teeuwen - Verwoest Huis Piet Mondriaanstraat

Jennifer Crighton