The New Access Consortium Presents: a Collective Audit of the Vancouver Art Gallery



In weekly sessions over a period of three months, Carmen Papalia met with Arlene Bowman, romham pádraig gallacher, Taryn Goodwin,Jotika, Myah Catherine Rose Wallace, and aly de la cruz yip to discuss accessibility in relation to the disabling social, cultural, and political conditions that obstruct agency. Using Papalia’s Open Access framework as a conceptual starting point, the group developed a working methodology for assessing the state of institutional access and publicness and directed their focus at Gallery Gachet – a collectively-run gallery that has served as a hub for culture and community in Vancouver’s Downtown Eastside neighbourhood since 1993 – and the Vancouver Art Gallery; a former courthouse where visitors can see the Emily Carr collection for a $24 admission fee.

Weekly meetings gave way to independent creative practice-based research and an eventual unsolicited, collective accessibility audit of the Vancouver Art Gallery; an action that was presented in a culminating exhibition at Gallery Gachet. Documentation, objects, and ephemera from the process told the story of the project and was presented alongside work that was informed by personal experiences at the VAG; a collection that featured a collaboratively-edited reproduction of a didactic wall text that misrepresented colonization, which was originally written by the Associate Director / Chief Curator of the institution.

Poster Final - A Collective Audit of the Vancouver Art Gallery


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I design experiences that allow those involved to expand their perceptual mobility and claim access to public and institutional spaces. Contact me for interviews, project proposals and work opportunities.

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