A walk through one of Calgary’s biggest art galleries
By Astrid Cunanan, Staff Writer
If you know me in person, I always talk about wanting to travel to different destinations to admire and experience the places’ art, architecture and food. But due to the pandemic I’ve been stuck in Calgary — this is not a bad thing at all. If anything, I’ve gotten to explore more of Calgary this past year and a half than the many years I’ve been living here combined.
That’s why I want to bring attention to one of Calgary’s hidden gems. Tucked away in the west end of downtown, the Contemporary Calgary building turns the heads of many — its brutalism architecture style found both in the interior and exterior stands out from the surrounding buildings. I couldn’t help but notice how accessible the building is, this truly is a space where everyone can feel safe.
Immediately after walking in, my friend and I were kindly greeted by the receptionist — the lobby in itself was already pleasing to the eye, the floor-to-ceiling glass made the sun rays flood the room touching every surface. Tickets were $10 per person and given that we’re both university students with student loans we thought the price was cheap compared to all the exhibits we got to see.
The exhibits named Everywhere We Are and Notes for Tomorrow were spread among two floors equally. Some of my favourites were from an artist named Ryan Sluggett who used mixed media on paper to create abstract objects — you may have to stand there for a while to figure out what is going on but that’s the fun of it. Another wonderful artwork is from Joseph Drapell, which consisted of acrylic paint layered over and over to create thick and textured artwork.
On the way up to the second level, the uniquely shaped floor tiles resembled planet earth — I thought this was insanely beautiful and I cannot imagine how much time this installation took to piece together.
If you ask my friend and I what was the most notable thing we saw, we would both simultaneously say Wyn Geleynse’s Warehouse — a large ultra-realistic diorama of a warehouse. We were astonished by the level of detail, it is evident each and every single piece got proper attention. You could even peek inside to see a man on the second floor trying to cover himself (where’s the privacy in this place?).
For a while, we stood admiring and taking pictures of every nook and cranny of the gallery. I’m in disbelief that I just found out about this place, I must have missed out on many exciting exhibitions. The Everywhere We Are and Notes for Tomorrow exhibitions will be up until Oct. 10, 2021. Before going, make sure to check the latest COVID-19 rules and lastly, stay safe and continue to support Calgary’s art scene!