TEAM WORK. 30 YEARS OF CGAC. A POSSIBLE HISTORY OF THE CGAC
An anniversary is more than a celebration. To remember history is also to take stock, to review and reread the past in order to gain momentum for the future. This review exercise also necessarily implies the recognition of the work of all those people and institutions that, in one way or another, have participated in the planning and execution of a programme and in the construction of an essential public collection. Hence the title of this exhibition, Team work, emphasises the collective effort of those who, since 1993, have contributed to building and consolidating an essential project for culture and art in Galicia.
To mark the 30th anniversary of the Galician Centre of Contemporary Art (CGAC), two institutions dependent on the Regional Government of Galicia (the CGAC itself and the City of Culture’s Gaiás Museum) are joining forces to highlight the transformative importance of the CGAC as a museum as well as the creator, depositary and custodian of the public collection of Galicia’s most outstanding contemporary art.
Hence, the Team work project is articulated in two separate but complementary exhibitions. On the one hand, the building designed by the Portuguese architect Álvaro Siza Vieira will house the exhibition entitled A Possible History of the CGAC. This exhibition is conceived as a journey through the exhibitions, activities and publications promoted by the centre since its creation. It highlights the milestones and unique pieces that have marked its history and, concurrently, the evolution of Galicia’s artistic context over three decades. On the other hand, in the spaces of the Gaiás Museum, Peter Eisenman’s work, the exhibition Contemporary Stories from the CGAC Collection proposes a thematic approach to the present, based on materials from collection of the centre in Compostela.
Over the past thirty years, the CGAC has progressively approached the idea of a museum, without ceasing to be an art centre. At the same time, the concept of the museum has been changing and evolving towards more experimental, dynamic and participatory models, focused on the production and construction of complex collections with the capacity to generate new narratives that encourage public debate.
How, then, can the history of an institution like the CGAC be told? How is it possible to synthesise thirty years of work in one exhibition? These are questions that the exhibition A Possible History of the CGAC and the project which encompasses it attempt to answer. This is obviously done through its collection but also by reconstructing a summary of key works in its exhibition programme, which, at the time, were present and that dialogue with each other, establishing connections that give meaning to a programme. The exhibition also includes a timeline that gives an account of the activity of the museum and a sample of the publications (exhibition catalogues, artist's books and compilations of texts and essays) that, over the years, have been adding to the centre's publishing collection.
This entire diversity of aspects is included in an exhibition itinerary articulated between the ground floor and the basement, with pieces from the CGAC Collection and others on loan that will allow individual exhibitions and collective projects to be displayed.
Without claiming to be an exhaustive compendium of the initiatives promoted by the CGAC throughout its three decades of existence, this exhibition proposes a route organised on two levels that evokes many of the key moments and pieces of its history through a careful selection of works, many of which form part of the centre’s collection.