Sameer Farooq: Boop Museum

May 5 – July 5, 2019
Reception: Sunday, May 5, 2 – 4 PM

The Visual Arts Centre of Clarington is pleased to present a solo exhibition by Sameer Farooq.

Curated by Sandy Saad

The interdisciplinary practice of Sameer Farooq questions dominant institutional narratives in collections and museums. For over 15 years, Farooq has created community-based models of participation and knowledge production in order to re-imagine a material record of the present. Using museum display strategies as a medium, Farooq points to persistent absences in historical narratives, making buried histories more visible and offering counter-archives and new additions museum collections. Originally trained as a cultural anthropologist, he enlists the tools of installation, sculpture, photography, documentary filmmaking, writing and various anthropological methods to explore forms of collecting, interpreting, and display.

Farooq continues his exploration of institutional collecting strategies in Boop Museum. The exhibition comprises of de-accessioned objects from the Clarington Museum and Archives, who actively support and follow Ministry Guidelines and ethical museum practices with respect to collecting and de-accessioning objects. Working with a small portion of dolls, Farooq repurposes the de-accessioned objects to become part of a large-scale installation. The objects are displayed on museum furniture designed for people between 3 feet and 4 feet tall, creating a speculative museum made for children. On the last day of the exhibition, the children of the Clarington community are invited to the Visual Arts Centre of Clarington to “loot” the museum space created by Farooq. In keeping with his social practice, Farooq releases the objects back to the children, creating a community-based museum space while exploring the potential lives objects could have once they leave the historical archive.

Sameer Farooq is a Canadian artist of Pakistani and Ugandan Indian descent. With exhibitions at institutions around the world including the Aga Khan Museum (Toronto), the Art Gallery of Ontario (Toronto), The British Library (London), the Institute of Islamic Culture (Paris), The Lilley Museum (Reno), Vicki Myhren Gallery (Denver), the Contemporary Art Gallery (Vancouver), Maquis Projects, (Izmir), Trankat (Tétouan, Morocco), Sol Koffler Gallery (Providence), Artellewa (Cairo), and Sanat Limani (Istanbul), Farooq received several awards from The Canada Council for the Arts, Ontario Arts Council, Toronto Arts Council, and the Europe Media Fund, as well the President’s Scholarship at the Rhode Island School of Design. Reviews and essays dedicated to his work have been included in Canadian Art, Hyperallergic, C Magazine, The Washington Post, BBC Culture, Artnet, The Huffington Post, Border Crossings, and others. He also appeared on the 2018 Sobey Art Award long list, Canada’s preeminent art award.

The Visual Arts Centre of Clarington is a partially accessible venue with an accessible washroom. The front entrance can be accessed by a ramp and an inward-opening door (please note that we do not have an automatic door opener). It is important to note that the loft gallery is not accessible by wheelchair. Accessible parking is available on site. For any special assistance or queries about the venue, please call or email us. Admission is free and all are welcome.

The Visual Arts Centre of Clarington is committed to being a space that is safe and inclusive for all people. For this space to be accessible to people with varying allergies and sensitivities, it is a pet free, nut free, and scent free zone. We ask that visitors please refrain from bringing in animals, food items containing nuts, and wearing heavily scented products. Thank you for your consideration.

Currently on view at the VAC:
The Loft Gallery Commission: An installation by Ron Benner
Trans/mission: Barley-Corn-Maize

Visual Arts Centre of Clarington, 143 Simpson Avenue, Bowmanville, Ontario, L1C 3K8

Gallery Hours:
Monday: Closed
Tuesday – Thursday: 10 am – 9 pm
Friday – Sunday: 10 am – 4 pm

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The Visual Arts Centre of Clarington is proudly supported by: