Lorna Brown is a Vancouver artist, curator and educator. Since 1984 her work has been shown in exhibitions at Dazibao, Montreal; Presentation House Gallery, North Vancouver; Contemporary Art Gallery, Vancouver; Gallery 44, Toronto; Canadian Museum of Contemporary Photography, Ottawa; Taipei Fine Arts Museum; and Artspeak, Vancouver, among others. Her recent independent curatorial projects include Set and Group Search: art in the library. Director/Curator of Artspeak 1999–2004.
A graduate of Emily Carr Institute of Art and Design in 1998, Hoffman’s work was recently featured in Le Mois de la Photo Montreal and Bitume/Bitumen 99 in Brussels.
Kathleen Ritter (b. 1974) is an artist and a writer based in Vancouver. Her research and practice investigate institutional structures that surround and mediate the reception of art. Her work has been exhibited at Modern Fuel, Kingston ON (2008); the Robert McLaughlin Gallery, Oshawa ON (2008); Western Front, Vancouver (2004); Skol, Montreal (2000); and Access, Vancouver (2000). Her writing has been published in the anthology Places and Non-Places of Contemporary Art (2005) and the journals Prefix Photo, ESSE, Open Letter, and Fillip Magazine. She curated Expect Delays (2003) at Artspeak, a series of artist’s interventions that took place throughout Vancouver. She is currently Assistant Curator at the Vancouver Art Gallery.
A recent graduate of Emily Carr College of Art and Design, Shem has exhibited his work in ‘Blip: Locating Nature and Technology’ that toured to Cornish College of Art, Seattle; Pratt Institute, New York; and the San Francisco Institute of Art and Design.
Reid Shier is Director of Presentation House Gallery in North Vancouver. He has curated numerous exhibitions locally, nationally and internationally. He is an artist and critical writer, and was one of the founding editors of Boo Magazine, which he co-edited from 1994 to 1998.
Boys and Girls Welcome!
March 25–May 6, 2000
Just in from the corner of Nanaimo and First sits a deadpan clapboard structure, its windowless facade contradicting the friendly handpainted Boys and Girls Welcome! sign that is tacked where a window ought to be. Photographed in isolation and printed in deeply saturated colour this forgettable building becomes embued with a sinister innocence. This image is one of a series of cibachrome prints presented in a first solo exhibition by Alan Hoffman. His enlargements of vernacular architecture in Vancouver and his hometown Penticton hover between nostalgia and unease. The gas stations, motor motels and churches at first appear to be architectural models or miniatures, perhaps model train environments. In recognizing the Ridge Theatre or Penticton’s giant peach it becomes clear that the curiously distorted sense of scale and euphemized colour are technically accomplished representations of the familiar landmarks and architectural oddities of Vancouver neighbourhoods and Okanagan tourist destinations.
Hoffman has chosen to photograph the clumsy manifestations of lowbrow aspirations—not the grandiose failures of Vancouver modernism so comprehensively covered by this city’s more senior artists. His work escapes ‘the quaint’ and resists ‘the serious’ simultaneously as it fails to allow easy entry into the ‘reality’ it pictures.
Breukleman, Jim; Laurence, Robin “Hot Properties”, Presentation House Gallery: North Vancouver, 1987.
Adrian, Robert; Arngn’naaq, Ruby; Butler, Jack; Campbell, Kati; Esch, Deborah; Falk, Lorne; MacInnis, Neil; Miller, Bernie; Moylan, Tom; Robert, Jocelyn; Urban, Colette. “The City Within”. Jeanne Randolf, ed.: The Banff Centre, 1992.
Graham, Rodney; Kleyn, Robert; Linsley, Robert; Sinclair, Jennifer Oille; Smithson, Robert; Snider, Greg. “Some Detached Houses”. Bill Jeffries, Cur. Contemporary Art Gallery, Vancouver, 1990.
Haraldsson, Arni; Kleyn, Robert. “Project on Vancouver Architecture and Landscape”. Presentation House Gallery, North Vancouver, 1995.
Sekula, Allan; Dufour, Gary; O’Brian, John. “Geography Lesson: Canadian Notes”. Vancouver Art Gallery, Vancouver, 1997.
Crewdson, Gregory; Morrow, Bradford; Steinke, Darcey. “Dream of Life”. Ediciones Universidad de Salamanca, Spain, 1999.
Group Exhibition. “Mois de la Photo à Montréal, 1999″. Organized by VOX, Montréal, 1999.
Hoffman, Alan. “Fourteen Stories”. Self-published. Vancouver, 1996.
Whitehead, Gary. “I Can Fix Anything”. Arsenal Pulp Press: Vancouver, 1994.
Derksen, Jeff. “Until”. Downtime Talonbooks: Vancouver, 1990
Coady, Lynn. “Nice Place to Visit” Play the Monster Blind. Doubleday: Toronto, 2000
Speak, Dorothy. “The View From Here” Object of Your Love. Somerville House: Toronto, 1996
Gom, Leona. excerpt from “Zero Avenue”. Douglas & McIntyre: Vancouver, 1989
Trujillo Lusk, Dorothy. “Sentimental Intervention” Writing 25. Kootenay School of Writing: Vancouver, 1990.
Title: Boys and Girls Welcome
Category: Exhibition Catalogue
Artist: Alan Hoffman
Writers: James Baker, Neil Besner, Lorna Brown, Derek Fairbridge, Adrienne Lai, Henry Lehmann, Jonathan Middleton, Kathleen Ritter, Sharon Romero, Adam Lewis Schroeder, Sam Shem, Reid Shier and John Wertschek
Year published: 2000
Binding: Round Head Brass Fastener
Dimensions: 11.5 x 11 x 0.8 cm
Weight: 29 g
Price: Not available
A special poster/catalogue project featuring the responses of the following artists and writers to Alan Hoffman’s photographs: James Baker, Neil Besner, Lorna Brown, Derek Fairbridge, Adrienne Lai, Henry Lehmann, Jonathan Middleton, Kathleen Ritter, Sharon Romero, Adam Lewis Schroeder, Sam Shem, Reid Shier and John Wertschek. This project is made possible through the generous contribution of James Baker and Stacey Noyes.