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Gallery of Wonder

Lookup NU author(s): Professor Irene Brown


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The Gallery of Wonder, established by Irene Brown as conference point and exhibition facility for research into the evocation of wonder through display, has built an extensive body of new, practice based research on wonder. Wonder cabinets firmly establish the position of the subject, for whom the view was constituted, reaffirming the relationship between the object and the viewer. It is this scopic regime, which has the potential to enthral and transfix us, which this research project explores. Via two cabinet-based exhibition venues, in the Great North museum: Hancock and the Fine Art Department of Newcastle University, GoW presented 26 individual exhibitions over two years. A total of 36 contributors produced new work in response to the wonder research brief. The programme was curated by Irene Brown from an internet call to participate, inviting artists, scientists, writers and researchers to engage with and contribute to the research. The physical framework of the two venues promoted the interdisciplinary nature of the project and encouraged the questioning of the conventional relationships between art and science, gallery and museum. Several contributors initiated interdisciplinary art/science projects as part of their approach. June 14th 2012 GoW held Working Wonder, a one day international conference at Newcastle University, generating, Working Wonder: wonder in contemporary arts practice, publication. A plethora of recent exhibitions underline the urgency of Wonder within contemporary visual art (MOMA Wunderkammer, 2008; Getty Institute Devices of Wonder, 2002, NGCA Wonders of the Visible World, 2012; Hayward Touring: Curiosity: Art and The Pleasures of Knowing, 2013). The GoW research project makes a significant contribution to this field. The website provides a data base, disseminating the outcomes and presenting images and texts for each project. There is a resource of key texts, a selection of papers/ digital presentations from the Working Wonder Conference and publication download.

Publication metadata

Artist(s): Brown IS

Publication type: Exhibition

Publication status: Published

Year: 2012

Number of Pieces: 28 individual exhbitions

Venue: Gallery of Wonder

Location: Fine Art Newcastle University/ Great North Museum: Hancock

Source Publication Date: 16.02.2010/ 01.04.2012

Media of Output: Mixed