Stan Douglas

Abstract Composition


Not on display

Stan Douglas born 1960
Photograph, colour, Chromogenic print, on paper
Image: 458 × 456 mm
Purchased with assistance from the American Fund for the Tate Gallery and the Art Fund 2001


This series of photographs was produced by Douglas to accompany the video installation Win, Place or Show (Tate T07700) and the triptych Untitled (Set for Win Place or Show: East View, West View, Overview) (Tate P78413). The series of photographs show the area of Vancouver known as Strathcona, where the video is set, although as it exists today rather than in 1968 when the action in the video purports to take place. This district forms the context for Douglas's video installation and is visible in the video installation as a rain-soaked cityscape that the characters view from their window in the apartment block. Paradoxically, at this moment the view is hardly distinguishable from any number of cityscapes. Stan Douglas was born in Vancouver in 1960 and this series of views of the city indicate his awareness of local contexts on which the impact of official histories and political programmes are evident. The redevelopment scheme for this district, first proposed in 1950, was partially completed during the following two decades. In 1968, however, further stages of the project were halted by the intervention of local residents and urban activists. The photographs reveal the completed parts of the redevelopment project, including the apartment buildings Stamps Place and McLean Park, as well as elements of the preserved old district such as the Russian Orthodox Church.

Further Reading

Lynne Cooke, Sianne Ngai, Nancy Shaw and Neville Wakefield, Double Vision: Stan Douglas and Douglas Gordon, exhibition catalogue, Dia Center for Art, New York 2000
Diana Augaitis, George Wagner and William Wood, Stan Douglas, exhibition catalogue, Vancouver Art Gallery, Vancouver and Foundation for Contemporary Art, Tilburg 1999, reproduced pp. 95-97, 99-101 in colour
Carol J Glover, Diana Thater and Scott Watson, Stan Douglas, London 1998

Tanya Barson
February 2001

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