Vancouver International Centre for Contemporary Asian Art
Centre A is pleased to announce that our RAT school of ART 2017 artist-in-residence will be none other than artist collective Instant Coffee, to be represented by founding member Jinhan Ko.
The second participant in the Centre A and the RAT school of ART’s Residency and Exchange program, from April – June 2017, Ko will reside in the central Jongno District of Seoul, South Korea and participate in one term of RAT’s master class program. Over the course of his stay he will participate in weekly seminars, give a special lecture as a part of the RAT school’s public lecture program, and execute an audience engagement project or exhibition on the school premises. Importantly, he’ll have a chance to connect with Seoul’s arts and culture scene and hopefully find a few good friends along the way.
Centre A and the RAT school of ART’s Canada-Korea exchange and residency program is a platform that permits exploration and development of the relationship between Seoul, Korea and Vancouver, Canada. This residency works to nurture relationships between these two communities while sparking a dialogue informed by the diverse experiences of each. Both places have dynamic histories in relation to colonization and resistance as well as unique and at times interrelated experiences of capitalism, urban development and gentrification, including ambitious green city initiatives. It is intended that participating artists will explore historical and current cultural dynamics while growing in their own artistic and social practices.
The program consists of Ko’s 3.5 month residency, an exhibition and shorter term residency at Centre A by RAT school participants in the fall of 2017, and this time around, a special results of research project by Ko at Centre A in mid 2018. This is all part of our ongoing quest to activate contemporary art’s vital role in building inter-local dialogue and people-to-people linkages across the Pacific. In the coming year, through this and other projects, we seek to empower rich conversations as we highlight the importance of trans-Pacific exchange in the face of inter-related socio-political, cultural, economic and ecological change.
Instant Coffee is a service-oriented artist collective based in Toronto, Winnipeg, and Vancouver(Canada). Through formal installations, and event-based activities, they build public space to practice in, where ideas, materials, and actions can be explored outside of the isolated studio in a manner that renegotiates the traditional exhibition structures, but is still supported by them. Instant Coffee has had an extensive art practice spanning over fifteen years, and has been invested in combining the social with the aesthetic, and as such have worked in public spaces to engage expanded audiences.
Jinhan Ko is a Vancouver-based artist and a writer. He is one of the founding members of artist collective Instant Coffee, a service-oriented group that helps to facilitate artists projects. Ko actively engages in a social practice that brings people together for performances, lectures, concerts, and other participatory activities. The collective has shown and organized events internationally including Subdivision, Hamburg; Light Bar Research and Residency, Kuenstlerhaeuser Worpswede, Germany and Flaggfabrikken/Bergen Kunsthall, Bergen, Norway.
The RAT school of ART offers a master class certificate along with a one of its kind study program in Korea. It believes that Seoul is a great city for artists. RAT facilitates exchange with artists/institutions abroad and fosters the potential of Korean art. The RAT school of ART was founded in 2014 by Dirk Fleischmann, who has been teaching art at Korean universities since 2009 and taught classes as visiting professor at Lasalle College of the Arts (Singapore) and Emily Carr University (Vancouver.) Other exchange programs of the RAT school of ART include a unique collaboration with Frankfurt’s’ Städelschule coordinated by renowned artist Tobias Rehberger as well and 2016 Montreal Biennale Curator Philippe Pirotte.
Centre A is a leading Canadian public art gallery situated in the heart of Vancouver’s Chinatown. Centre A strives to activate contemporary art’s vital role in building and understanding the long and dynamic Asia-Canada relationship, while providing a platform for tackling questions and concerns emerging from trans-Pacific and Asian-rooted cultural-historical trajectories. Playing an active role in community enlivenment and conviviality, Centre A is a means for broader cultural productivity; a local and trans-national community building apparatus that acts as a conduit for the contest of ideas and a site for the contemplation of issues of contemporary concern.
Photo courtesy of Instant Coffee.