Nikolai Noel and Matthew Shelton are collaborating in creating “The Regime of Forgetting” as part of 1708 Gallery's "10 x 10" exhibition.
As we enter into summer’s doldrums, the art scene has heated up, just alone with the opening in Scott’s Addition of Studio Two Three and the current and ongoing rotating “10 X 10” exhibitions at the 1708 Gallery.
Through Aug. 9, 1708 is opening its exhibition space to 10 artists and community groups. Each set up shop in the gallery for one week for a total of 10 weeks.
“Summer’s a good time to do something like this,” says gallery director Emily Smith. “It’s quiet, and events like 10 x 10 keep people moving and energized. All of the projects have had a truly fantastic vibe, and it’s been significant for us in terms of learning about what people are craving and how they want to interact with the space.”
This experimental open platform that turns the gallery into a communal place is inspired by NURTUREArt, New York.
For a complete list of exhibitions, extended gallery hours and special events, see here.
The past week’s events have included an indoor plant rehabilitation workshop, art exchanges between incarcerated youth and adults, photography, movement and music. This week, Nikolai Noel and Matthew Shelton collaborate in creating “The Regime of Forgetting,” which runs through Saturday.
Noel is of African, Indian and Trinidadian heritage, and Shelton is a white Southerner from North Carolina. For "10 x 10," Noel and Shelton will connect Richmond and Port of Spain, Trinidad, site of Alice Yard, an artist-run exhibition space.
The two artists first met as graduate students at Virginia Commonwealth University. Tomorrow, Wednesday at 5:30 p.m., they will speak about their efforts.
“They use ‘colonialism’ as a description of what they’re looking into, but you can interpret that as how various factors have shaped and continue to manifest in who they are as people, who they are in their particular culture and from their background," Smith says. "What are their roles and responsibilities within those frameworks?”
During the week, from their respective remote locations, the artists are engaged in work that draws from cartography, astrological charts and divination.
The project is based on the exchange of prompts that inspire parallel developments in downtown Richmond and Trinidad.
They aren’t strangers to this process. Shelton and Noel joined in CONSTELLATIONS%ARCHIPELAGOS, a 2012 collaboration and exhibition at the ICA at Maine College of Art in Portland.
For July 28 to Aug. 1, it’s “My Kid Could Make That” in which VCUArts administrator Angela Allen creates art in collaboration with her own 4-year-old daughter and other parents and their children. “Her motivation came out of a question, ‘What’re you working on lately?' and she wanted to renew her practice and approach now that she’s a mom.”
Aug. 4 to 8 is the intriguing “What If?” a free-flowing design charette by proponents for the BridgePark across the James River from approximately Kanawha Plaza to the Manchester Climbing Wall. Organizers will bring in a scaled model of BridgePark and engage the community about the possibilities of such a creation and offer examples of programming envisioned for the space. Special events are to be announced.
And the gallery is air conditioned.