Last October, YAA headed out on our first field trip of the year to The New Gallery, an artist-run, non-profit centre for contemporary art located in Chinatown. We attended a talk as a part of the current exhibition 2 works, 3 talks, 6 questions (Eric Moschopedis with Keyede Osuntokun and Bryce Krynski) where we listened to Pam Beebe and Tito Gomez share about creating Dover Kids Club. Responding to the interests of children in Dover, the club is a grassroots initiative to create safe social spaces for children after school. We heard about the challenges they have had working with institutions as well as the successes of other partnerships. I was challenged and inspired by their example of starting exactly where the community was at – in this case engaging kids with stickers. The club has grown to provide a variety of social and cultural opportunities for the children and adapted to find spaces where they are welcome. I think we all enjoyed hearing from one of their collaborators, Wakefield Brewster, a spoken word artist. He dynamically shared some of his art and story of working with Dover Kids Club.
The talk was set amongst pages of analyzed and highlighted text from The Rise of the Creative Class by Richard Florida and portraits of diverse individuals painted in gold. Moschopedis’ work explores how people relate to each other and to space, and critiques the use of creativity as an economic driver for a city that Richard Florida proposes in the book at the centre of this show. Realizing the power art holds in shaping space and changing communities, in both positive and negative ways, we were challenged to consider how our creation of public art affects people and space.
Check out more about The New Gallery here!