Luiza Brenner has partnered with A WAY Art Gallery to curate our newest Open Call...
The Collection will be on display through the A WAY Online Gallery from August 7th - September 6th. The deadline for "The Collection" is July 26th.
Click HERE to apply to the Call.
About the Call
"No man is an island,
entire of itself;
every man is a piece of the continent,
a part of the main."
- excerpt of John Donne's Meditation 17
The COVID-19 pandemic and the anti-racism and social justice uprisings made it clear that we are all in this together. No man is an island, and there is only one way to move forward: as a collective. But who is heard within that collective? Who is speaking? Taking from Barbara Kruger, 'Whose hopes? Whose fears? Whose values? Whose justice?" In these effervescent times, The Collective tries to find the ties that unite us – as plural and diverse that they may be.
For "The Collective" call to artists A WAY Art Gallery is waiving their 15% commission. We ask that artists who sell their work during The Collective Exhibition donate our usual 15% commission to a local charity of their choosing. This is to help our artists give back to their community and organizations that they are passionate about.
Luiza met Claire (The Founder of A WAY Art Gallery) while Luiza was the Gallery Manager and Curator at South Main Gallery in Vancouver, B.C., and Claire as an artist represented by the Gallery. They've kept in touch since South Main Gallery closed in September 2019.
Originally from São Paulo, Brazil, Luiza Brenner has a B.A. in Marketing and Communications and a Masters in Contemporary Art by Sotheby's Institute of New York. She worked in both commercial and non-profit galleries, museums, and art fairs between São Paulo, New York, Los Angeles, and Miami before landing in Vancouver, in 2017. There, Luiza worked at South Main Gallery as a Gallery Manager and Curator and co-founded the Vancouver Biennale Young Ambassadors. In 2019, she juried the undergrad show at the Emily Carr University of Art was a panelist at the Vancouver Art Fair. Today, Luiza works independently as an arts writer, curator, and illustrator.
Why did you decide to go into art, and why specifically Curation and Gallery Management?
Art was always a passion. Being a curator/gallery manager happened intuitively rather than planned. I love working closely with artists and learning about their research, processes, and techniques and how they respond to their surroundings. I'm interested in bridging the gap between artist's intentions x public understanding, making it accessible for the public.
Why did you choose 'The Collective' as the theme?
There is no question that we are living through unprecedented turbulent times. The COVID-19 pandemic brought the inequality and social injustice issues to the center of the stage that the fast-paced life we were living made it easier for the privileged classes to ignore. We are finally seeing the power of the collective and people taking matters into their own hands through fundraising, rallying, protesting, donating. I'm interested in seeing how the artists are responding to this. It is widespread to see the 'myth' of the artist portrayed as a loner, being in the studio all day, stuck in their mind. Through this exhibit, I want to break that façade and uncover how the collective affects the arts – and how the arts can affect the collective.
How do you approach curating an exhibition? What is the most important part?
The most important part, as cliché as it sounds, it's always the art. I want to be able to show the connections between seemingly disparate artists through a common theme. The curator's role is critical to translate to the public how a piece is part of a broader discussion.
Do you believe the on-going pandemic will change the way in which the art-world operates? Do you think galleries will work to keep their online platform or go back to business as usual once the pandemic is over?
I think the pandemic undoubtedly made the galleries look at the importance of being in the digital world, as well, and showed a way to make exhibitions accessible to people all around the globe. You don't have to travel to NY and pay admission to see an exhibit at the MoMA – you can navigate through it from your couch. That is huge! I think that the timelines will change quite a bit, too. The rush of putting a new exhibit every three months, going to art fairs every other month, etc. will slow down. People are at a different pace now, which it's excellent. Art is supposed to be consumed slowly and appreciated over time – not that average 17 seconds it takes for someone to look at a painting. All that said, I believe people will certainly enjoy being able to visit an exhibit in person once this is over.
Where has been your source to view art since being in lockdown?
Since being stuck at home, I turned into books. I collect many artists and exhibitions catalogs that tend to collect dust more often than I'd like. During the lockdown, I got the chance to revisit them and spend some time with my favorite artists.
Before hitting the submit button to apply to The Collective what is one last bit of advice you would give each artist?
Take your time. I know that artists are craving opportunities to showcase their work and tend to apply to as many open calls as possible. My advice is to take your time, sit with your art, and assess if your art speaks to that theme. It is really easy to create subterfuges and loose connections to make your work 'fit,' but I'd urge you to be an advocate for your work and be intentional. Stay true to it, and do it justice. Don't water-down your research to fit a box.