&TUR was established by YaWei in 2011 as an open concept creative space for artists (in the broadest sense) to exhibit and to promote their works. Since then, &TUR has been hosting and curating various types of cultural events and art exhibitions. The mandate of &TUR is to create opportunities for artists of all levels to showcase their works with minimal constraints of academic or commercial criterions. All &TUR exhibitions are intended to be practically and intellectually accessible for artists and visitors. From 2011 to 2015, &TUR was located on the second floor of Innocent Coffee in Vancouver, BC. This allows &TUR to integrate art experiences into everyday life by making these experiences accessible not only to gallery-goers but also to people who just stumble upon them while going about their daily routine. There is a very insightful interview on curating in Issue 18 of Elephant magazine with curator of Artfore, Rafal Niemojewski, in which he mentioned the notion of “public art”. This particular notion of “public art” is very similar to the art experience that &TUR intends to facilitate. In the interview Niemojewski explained exactly what he meant by “public art”:
“It’s an umbrella term to describe the way that a certain kind of art is directly made available to the public. It is usually sited or staged in that public domain and doesn’t require you to purchase a ticket or make an appointment to see it. It offers a different type of experience from the one at the museum, which comes with a set of culturally determined norms and prescribed forms of visitor behaviour. This is what public art avoids. It removes the cultural constructs around what an experience of art should be. It also removes art works from the protective environment of the art institution and requires them to confront the reality of everyday life. Last but not least, it enables long-term engagement with specific sites and communities and a greater degree of participation.”
As of November 1, 2015, &TUR will be merged into The Taste and See Shop (a retail shop featuring Innocent Coffee &TUR) and will continue to create accessible art experiences and to support efforts of art practice from all levels.
curator & director
October 22, 2015