The new Art Gallery of Alberta

I don’t have ¬†legitimate arts media accreditation other than my blog anymore, so I figured I would join the other social networking people on a tour specially for bloggers.

I won’t make that mistake again!

Not that I didn’t enjoy their company. I do know and like a number of them. But I felt that we were being treated rather poorly by the AGA. For example, after receiving an email that specifically said we could take photos of the lobby and building (but not the artworks), a security guard barked at those who were snapping pics before AGA staff came to get us. AND THEN! They didn’t even let us into the galleries!

Enough previews have been done  of the building proper by the Journal and other big media, so my interest was in seeing the new exhibitions and the galleries themselves. As far as I can tell, there is more space for artwork, but who knows? And such a disappointment not to be able to preview the work: Degas and Goya on the first floor; Karsh (KARSH!) and George Bure-Miller and Janet Cardiff on the second; and another Bure-Miller/Cardiff on the third.

The theatre seems smaller or the same as before. They couldn’t tell me what formats they supported, which was weird too. In fact, when I asked, the new Executive Director laughed my question off: “Who uses Super 8 anymore?” I felt humiliated and angry, on behalf of the many media artists who continue to use Super 8 and other film formats.

That being said, I will buy a ticket and go see the shows. Probably on a weekday, at full price, so I can properly take the time to see everything at my leisure. I don’t mind doing it. And to be fair to the AGA, a few of the people on the tour seemed uninterested in the artwork, or outirght hostile to the idea of a new gallery to begin with. That’s the difference between journalists and bloggers: research and accountability. I go both ways, but in the future I think I’ll go through official channels and show up with the legit media. In order to do a good job, I need to be trusted to see the pretty art.

It seemed lovely from the outside, anyhow.

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3 Responses to The new Art Gallery of Alberta

  1. Mack D. Male says:

    I think the AGA took a great step forward today by giving local bloggers a tour of the building. It certainly opens the door for future interactions! At the very least, they’re way ahead of other local organizations who ignore the social media community entirely, so I think they deserve some credit for that.

    They want people walking through the doors, and if that means protecting the exhibits, so be it!

    I’m glad you could make it today Mari, but I’m sorry to hear that you didn’t enjoy yourself more.

  2. mari says:

    Sorry Mack, I don’t mean to seem ungrateful. Thanks for pushing for this.

    I just know the AGA could do better to accommodate non-affiliated arts writers who aren’t just there to gawk. The Edmonton Opera is fantastic with this, targeting bloggers who have some knowledge (or interest) in what they have to present.

    I think what bloggers have to understand is that they have to earn some credibility before they are allowed any kind of access. On the other side of it, the arts organizations need to vet the writers of the blogs to understand their context, just like they scan traditional news to target their press releases appropriately.

    It just sucks that, right now, we’re regarded as yokels not worthy of the real goods.

  3. Pingback: Art Gallery of Alberta Social Media Tour – Adam Snider - Writer for Hire

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