787 Queen Street West
Toronto, Ontario, Canada


Left: window view, above: detail, photos: Rick O'Brien

Paul Butler
Temporarily Closed

09.07.10 – 17.08.10

Before settling on Temporarily Closed, Paul had a couple of other ideas for *QueenSpecific he had hoped to realize, but kept having to compromise due to financial constraint. Eventually, he decided that instead of responding to the site, he should address the state of creative paralysis he has been experiencing.

“I immediately thought of temporarily ‘closing’ the gallery ‘due to cutbacks’ by covering the window with newspaper like an ambient readymade. The space would go by unnoticed to most pedestrian traffic, but the art community who know the space as a gallery, might stop to question the installation further. But still, an insecurity in me as an artist felt like I was crapping out somehow. I momentarily considered producing an archival digital print edition of the newspaper. But if the piece was meant to speak to the financial challenges artists have producing work especially now in this recession – I couldn’t pander to any imaginary audience in my head by spending money in order to transform the everyday object into an artwork with ‘value’ So, after much deliberation, I settled on covering the *QueenSpecific window with newspaper (The Financial Times) after all.”

Paul Butler is a post-disciplinary artist. His practice includes hosting The Collage Party, a touring experimental studio and directing the operations of The Other Gallery, a nomadic commercial gallery focused on overlooked artists‘ practices. In 2007, he founded the UpperTradingPost.com, a website that facilitates artist trading. He also initiated the experimental school Reverse Pedagogy that began at the Banff Centre for the Arts in 2008 and has since travelled to Venice, Italy and Sligo, Ireland.


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