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February Issue 2005

Gibbes Museum of Art in Charleston, SC, Turns over Main Gallery to two Charleston Architects

The Gibbes Museum of Art in Charleston, SC, has launched its centennial anniversary year and the Winter 2005 Exhibition Program highlighting art and architecture with several exhibitions, including, un | spoken [SPACES]: Inside and Outside the Boundaries of Class, Race and Space. The exhibit will be on view from Feb. 5 through May 8, 2005.

The landmark exhibition features Charleston architects Ray Huff and Mario Gooden of Huff + Gooden Architects acting as installation artists utilizing spatial terms, standard within the field of architecture, in an original art installation. un | spoken [SPACES] features the Gibbes' Main Gallery as a multi-dimensional landscape where 16 selected works from the Museum's permanent collection are re-contextualized through a manipulation of spatial boundaries and interpretive texts. The exhibition breaks the traditional boundaries between architecture, installation art and museum display, and provides an unprecedented contemporary investigation into the issues of race, class and space in Charleston, and throughout the United States.

The exhibit utilizes various methods of exhibition display and presentation, including straightforward picture hangings, as well as digital projections and reproductions on scrims, fabric panels and other new surfaces. Huff and Gooden's exhibition design incorporates feedback from selected artists working in various media whom were invited to participate in an online chat room about the exhibition for 30 days beginning Nov. 1, 2004. In this forum, the artists were asked to respond to specific pairings of artwork featured in the exhibition and the associated boundaries each pairing represents. The resulting dialogue is incorporated into the overall exhibition installation and functions as a contemporary examination into the complex relationship between class, race and space, while allowing for a new level of understanding and critiquing of the Gibbes permanent collection in a wholly unconventional manner.

Intricate layering of image, text, varying materials and architectural constructions utilized in un | spoken [SPACES] provides an arena for Museum visitors' physical and mental negotiation of, and experience with, interior and exterior boundaries, implicit in the architecture of the space, the works of art, the new fabrications and the language in both the artists' responses and the explanatory texts. As a result the exhibition allows for the viewing of the Gibbes's permanent collection in an unconventional, unprecedented manner, resulting in a fresh, innovative connection between past and present.

For further information check our SC Institutional Gallery listings, call the Museum at 843/722-2706 or at (www.gibbesmuesum.org).

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