about 

Meta-Gallery is an adaptable temporary gallery project staged within the context of other institutions, with the intention to reevaluate their usage and how art practices can engage with the conventions, restrictions, and history of that place.

Hovering between conceptual simulation and functional space, Meta-Gallery carves a space from the hosting institution and utilizes various mechanisms of understanding a place as a way to establish itself as a new entity. This new space then functions as an entity autonomous of the host, independently engaging with other artists. It seeks to move away from ideas of exhibitions, timetables, and traditional curator/artist roles. All participation is at the individual’s discretion with moderation from the artist Andrew Horton. The organizational structure is fairly horizontal, with curators and artists setting their terms while Andrew Horton acts as support and mediator between the Meta-Gallery and museum.

The space is constantly transforming and active; there is no discerning of “up” and “down” time. With an intentionally limited lifespan, Meta-Gallery does not exist long enough to grow, corrupt, or stagnate; it is instead meant to maximize the usage of the space and time allotted.

Meta-Gallery takes notions of the potential of a gallery and stretches them to-and-past their breaking point, exploring instability as a mode of experimentation and productivity. Creating a clear curatorial aesthetic is not the intention of the project and as such, individual iterations of Meta-Gallery are not meant to be a reproduction of the same model. Instead, Meta-Gallery responds to different scenarios that have different concerns and needs.

Key to Meta-Gallery’s success is the ability to maintain a level of autonomy by determining and shaping its identity internally and rapidly, rather than through meticulous long-term planning. The relationship between MoCA and Meta-Gallery will be about push and pull, both playful and antagonistic, in hopes of achieving a critical and exploratory dialogue. The goal of this project is to question the relationships between curator, artist, and viewer by subverting them from expected norms, while clinging to recognizable conventions. There is no intent to provide “solutions” to perceived “problems,” but to force problematic aspects in art world relationships to surface. By subverting the nature of space and relationships, all parties must reexamine their roles.

Meta-Gallery also exposes other aspects of artistic practice and discourse which are not often found in museum-level institutions: radical practices, frank dialog, and performativity are often distilled or lost as art moves through up through historical institutions. The chain of bureaucracy (museum, curator, Meta-Gallery artist/curator, selected artists and curators) is a metaphor for the process through which art goes to reach the museum. It also acts as an agent of autonomy, separating the back offices and the participants in Meta-Gallery.

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