Since its formation in 1977, Gallery TPW has evolved alongside changes in the production, distribution, and perception of photography, film, and video. Our diverse roster of exhibitions, screenings, performances, commissioned writing, and public programs expands awareness of the vital role that images play in contemporary culture.
TPW began its program of continuous exhibitions in 1980. Through several locations and across nearly forty years, TPW has launched the careers of significant Canadian artists and has developed a national reputation and international community through collaboration with fellow artist-run centres, public galleries, educational institutions, and festivals.
From 2012–14, we ran TPW R&D, a flexible storefront space for artistic performance and educational experiments with spectator experience and the development of critical visual literacy. Briefly stepping away from structured exhibition models refreshed our understanding of how to support artists, reconfiguring the idea of research as a creative process to be shared with and in multiple publics.
Since opening our new home in April 2015, we have integrated the insights from TPW R&D into more structured exhibition models. Our diverse program now encompasses exhibitions; theatrical-, sound-, and movement-based performances; constructed social events; and lectures, discussions, and reading groups.
TPW has always supported new, generative, and exploratory art practices. Today, we want to help audiences understand how art accrues meaning and to better understand how an institution’s choices influence that meaning. This commitment to audience engagement, self-reflexive inquiry, and transparency unites TPW’s efforts and distinguishes us from our peers.
Image credit: Documentation of Laurie Kang’s A Body Knots at TPW (2018).