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Bill Burns, Alan Storey
From January 9th 1988 to January 31st 1988
The Art Train / Le train de l'art

Optica presents "The Art Train", an installation resulting of the collaboration of Bill Burns and Alan Storey, both artists living in British Columbia. This installation is accompanied by two Wall Works made by Bill Burns around complementary problematics.

THE ART TRAIN
"One of the central fascinations of contemporary art production is the elusive relationship between the gallery as a purified social institution and imagined real life. The over-heated and expansionary art market of recent seasons, characterised by the embracing of market values, is premised on the assumption that cooptation, commerce, and critique are passengers of the same train. The Art Train is gravity operated. It carries four basic forms around the pillars of the gallery. The ball, the cone, the cube, and the cylinder occupy a historically unalterable position within the theory and mythological structure of western art practice. The material - chocolate- of these cast basic forms attempts to highlight the seminal nature of this historical truth. "Chocolate Baggage" - "The Chocolate Grinder" - "Chocolate Fertility: the Easter Rabbit lays chocolate eggs". Gravity, the rhetorical glue of the tradition of sculpture, propels the train and its bitter-sweet cargo".

WALL WORKS
"The multi-panel wall works refer to commercial display systems. The colour schemes are mundane reflections on bureaucratic interior design programmes. The modernist tradition of one colour painting co-opted by commerce is again recycled. These works explore a kind of displacement between the uniquely crafted artefact and the photographic image of the mass produced object (in this case a train) ".
- Bill Burns
- Press release (Optica)

Bill Burns was born in Saskatchewan. He studied in Vancouver and Victoria, and more recently in London, England. He exhibited at Western Front, at the Walter Phillips Gallery, the Surrey Art Gallery as well as the London International Art Fair, at the Goldsmiths’ College (London), at the Trent Polytechnic (Nottingham), at the Manchester City Gallery, and at the Auto-Gallerie (Berlin). He was also part of “Project K-18” in Kassel, 1985.

Alan Storey lives in British Columbia, where he made his studies. He has realized numerous exhibitions, among which: at Open Space, at the OR Gallery, at the Walter Phillips Gallery and at Western Front, as well as the Contemporary Art Gallery, Mercer Union, the Surrey Art Gallery, and, recently, at the Vancouver Art Gallery. He was also part of the October Show and of the exhibition “From Sea to Shining Sea”, organized by Power Plant.