As part of our current programme Composting for the future, Void Art Centre are holding a series of reading groups in the form of both online events and self-directed reading groups. This week, we are presenting a reading for self-directed study: The catalogues of the Orchard Gallery: a contribution to critical and historical discourses in Northern Ireland, 1978-2003 by Gabriel N. Gee. The text was first published in 2013 in the Journal of Art Historiography.

The text details the history and legacy of The Orchard Gallery, which opened in Derry in 1978 and closed in 2003.

‘The second largest city of Northern Ireland did not have any artistic infrastructure at the time, and the Orchard was launched as an attempt to make up for this absence. From the outset, the artistic programme of the gallery aimed to exhibit a range of practitioners, both emerging and established, and coming from diverse geographical horizons, who were asked to produce works specifically for the gallery. The work had to respond to ‘the gallery’s ethos, which was about the place, and the interaction and the relationship between the artist who comes from outside and the place’.1

You can read and download the text at the link below:

The catalogues of the Orchard Gallery

At the time of writing, Gabriel N.Gee was Assistant Professor of art history at Franklin College, Switzerland. His research interests include twentieth-century British and Irish arts, industrial shifts and their relations to aesthetics, the forms of port cities, and para-stratas, particularly in the realm of heritage studies.

He is the co-founder of the TETI group (Textures and experiences of Transindustriality).