Buchwald-Wright Gallery, Gund Gallery
Ten years ago, the Gund Gallery opened its doors. Built over time through the steadfast support of Kenyon College and many generous donors, and with the expertise of the Gallery’s team of museum professionals, the Gund Gallery has grown into a remarkable institution. Still young and in development, we acknowledge and celebrate an unwavering commitment to promoting artistic excellence, supporting the voices of contemporary artists, and creating innovative academic and community programs.
Over the past decade, the Gallery has invited numerous artists to campus and has demonstrated the expansive qualities of the objects it stewards through exhibitions, curricular engagements, and free community activities. With its two hundred art objects that represent movements from the late twentieth century to the present day, the Gund Gallery is a vital example of what art can achieve when nurtured with thoughtfulness, openness and rigor. Celebrating this ten-year milestone in the Gallery’s history will be an opportunity to share what we hold dear and to celebrate it.
Organized as a call-and-response, the anniversary exhibition, which extends over the 2021–2022 academic year, uses the Gund Gallery Collection as a point of departure for artists and audiences to engage. We launch the next decade with a simple thought: What are the stories we haven’t yet told? In celebrating a decade of extraordinary work, we want to look ahead by amplifying the unsung voices and narratives that could help us better understand what our collection encompasses. With this invitation we ask of ourselves and our audiences to be audacious in our interpretations and, most importantly, to remain open to the findings. This initiative aims to push further what this space is and can be, and, through a process-based approach, to explore how our engagement with art is also about our relationships with others. We want to embrace new modes of knowledge production, and to experience the museum as an evolving environment.
Museums are inherently complex amalgams of knowledge, traditions, and conventions. Collections, as a by-product of the latter, can therefore be contextualized in many ways. With Call/Response: The Gund Gallery Turns 10, the collection aims to be a productive site of critical inquiry. The 2021 fall semester will be the incubation period. The works presented will be an invitation to consider and deepen the questions that persist as we spend time with them. The 2022 spring semester will be an adapted re-hanging of the exhibition, presenting some of the responses received and developed in the fall. Some of these responses will be loans from other collections, while others will come from our students, our faculty, community members, and invited artists.
It is with this open premise that we launch the celebration of the tenth anniversary. The Gund Gallery is a space for dialogue and convening informed by art, people, and ideas. This call-and-response is about coming together. Through diverse programs conceived in collaborations with campus and community partners, and realized through curricular engagements, students’ performances, K-12 activities, discussion series, speaking engagements, the launch of commissioned projects, Instagram takeovers, interpretative label texts from the Gund Associates, and the creation of an inaugural Gund Gallery Collection guide series, Call/Response: The Gund Gallery Turns 10 looks forward to the future―one that we embrace with you in all of its variations and interpretations.
―Daisy Desrosiers, Director and Chief Curator, Gund Gallery
The Gund Gallery exhibitions and programs are made possible, in part, by the Gund Gallery Board of Directors and the Ohio Arts Council.
Image: Ragnar Kjartansson (Icelandic, b. 1976) Still from The Visitors, 2012. Nine channel HD video projection, Duration: 64 minutes. Photo: Elísabet Davidsdóttir, Sound: Chris McDonald, Video: Tómas Örn Tómasson. Image courtesy of the artist, Luhring Augustine, New York, and i8 Gallery, Reykjavik. Gift of Graham and Ann Gund to Institute of Contemporary Art, Boston, Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum, New York, and Gund Gallery at Kenyon College, 2015.1.1.