Teaching a Stone to Talk

Works from the Permanent Collection:

Ron Bloore, Brian Fisher, Roy Kiyooka, Nobuo Kubota, Laurent Lévesque, Malcolm Rains, Gordon Smith, and Tim Whiten

Guest curated by Adam David Brown

What it is like to be an artist, to keep making art? A leap of faith, a ruse?

The late artist, Sol Lewitt, famously announced that “The idea is the machine that makes the art.”(1) He was well aware that art usually begins with an idea and that when looking for something extraordinary, it is often best to begin with something ordinary. From there, your work begins.

An artist curates with a knowing of what it’s like to be an artist who keeps the ball in the air, a suspension of belief. An artist’s work reveals the process of being an artist.

Each morning you climb several flights of stairs, enter your study, open the window and slide your desk and chair out into the middle of the air. The desk and chair float 30 feet from the ground, up in the crowns of the maple trees. Then, wincing, you step out again, through the window and sit down on the chair and look over your desktop. You pour yourself a cup of coffee. Now, get to work.

Your work is to keep cranking the flywheel that turns the gears that spin the belt in the engine of belief that keep you and your desk in the air. (2)

Adam David Brown

(1) Sol Lewitt, Paragraphs on Conceptual Art

(2) paraphrased from Annie Dillard, The Writing Life.

In our ongoing commitment to present our Collection through new voices, particularly, the voices of artists, Adam David Brown has been invited to select works from the Permanent Collection as a companion to his solo exhibition For The Time Being.

These works reflect Brown’s interest in the minute and the monumental, simple and humble materials, and expressions of the magnitude of the universe, its underlying patterns, and our insistent curiosity and ongoing inquiry.

It is an honour to work with artists, providing a platform for their voices in bringing forward stories from our Collection. Their particular knowledge of, interest in, and reverence for the work of their peers and heroes, offers a specific kind of insight that we are grateful to share with our audience.


Regular Hours: The Art Gallery of Peterborough is OPEN Wednesday to Sunday from 11 am - 5 pm

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