Twenty-Three Days at Sea is an unconventional traveling artist residency, produced by Access Gallery in partnership with the Burrard Arts Foundation and the Contemporary Art Gallery, offering selected emergent visual artists passage aboard cargo ships sailing from Vancouver to Shanghai. Crossing the Pacific takes approximately 23 days, during which time the artists are considered “in residence” aboard the vessels. This program offered us the opportunity to ask an important set of questions relevant to our own socio-political coordinates as culture-makers in a major port city on the Pacific Rim: How can art responsibly bring visibility to systems within which we are implicated, but which we neither see clearly nor fully understand? How might this residency draw attention to and query romanticism about the role of the artist as “witness”? What is the role of artist residencies in today’s increasingly peripatetic and globalized art world? What does risk mean in artistic practice today?
Twenty-Three Days at Sea, Chapter Two presents new bodies of work produced by the second group of residency artists in response to their time spent on the open sea. While diverse in their treatment of both media and subject matter, each of these exceptional artists’ practices is marked by a perceptible state of seeking. Their works on exhibition do not directly convey their experiences on the cargo vessels, but rather query the complexity of witnessing, explore the relationship of maritime song to labour, and consider our complicity in the global system of seaborne freight. This exhibition includes the launch of limited edition (hand-sewn, signed) reproductions of the logbooks each artist kept while at sea.
Michael Drebert’s artistic practice is founded on an intense curiosity with the natural world. An integral part of this work is to bear witness, or to simply be in the physical presence of particular geographies, animals, or plants. These encounters are essential to the conceptualizing of his work, and thus his research towards understanding the place gesture holds within art. Drebert, who lives and works in Vancouver, holds a BFA from Emily Carr University (2006) and an MFA from the University of Victoria (2010).
Book – $15.00 CA
Set of 4 2016/2017 resident logbooks – $50.00 CA
ISBN – 978-1-988149-08-0
Edition of 100
Layout by Erica Wilk
Printed in Vancouver by Precision Graphics
Bound by Richmond Custom Bindery
Twenty-Three Days at Sea: A Travelling Artist Residency is produced by Access Gallery in partnership with the Burrard Arts Foundation and the Contemporary Art Gallery. Additional assistance in Asia is graciously provided by China Residencies and Art Contraste, and at the port by the International Longshore and Warehouse Union. Access is grateful for the ongoing support of the Canada Council for the Arts, the British Columbia government through the BC Arts Council and BC Gaming, the City of Vancouver, and our donors, sponsors, members and volunteers.