Going Nowhere: Annual Second and Third Year SFU Visual Arts Student Exhibition

February 27 – March 20, 2009
SFU Gallery

Each year students from the Visual Art program in the SFU School for Contemporary Arts are given the opportunity to exhibit their work in the SFU Gallery. Organized and curated by students in third year, the exhibition reveals the aesthetic tendencies and conceptual trajectories developed by students of the program. This year we wanted to explore the relationship between rational conceptualism and visceral intuition in the creative process. We called this exhibit Going Nowhere because the rational and the intuitive qualities of art can often be seen to circle one another in an infinite regress, each somewhat dependent on the other for its existence.

Intuition itself is both a rational concept and a visceral experience, and it is therefore a fallacy, although a common one, to legitimize or covet the rational over the intuitive. Our school teaches us that theory is the backbone of art, but we are proposing that the opposite is equally true. In submitting work for consideration, students were not required to justify their creativity, to speak or write about what their work “means,” or about the intention from which it emerged. The artists presented in Going Nowhere have been released from the cul-de-sac of self-conscious intentionality and instead offer work with a non-specific origin and an undetermined destination.

As the viewer you may be stimulated intellectually, viscerally, or both at once. But the point is that like the artists in the creation of these works, you are not required to justify your response. We curated this show as a selection of works that simply struck a chord with us, independent of any written or verbal explanation. That work has now been surrendered to you as the viewer–the co-creator of meaning—leaving the interpretation open and fluid.

Curatorial team: Erik Brinkman, Kyle Halliday, Olivia Dunbar and Simon Murtagh


Opening Reception
Friday, February 27, 2009, 7–9pm