We’re all waiting.
Waiting in line clad in masks, six feet apart, picking up groceries. Waiting for stimulus checks to arrive. Waiting for episodes of a favorite TV show to drop. Waiting for a vaccine and a re- turn to some semblance of normal. Consequently, our concepts of space are rapidly changing. Streets are being closed for jog- gers and cyclists, parking lots are being converted to open air restaurants. Similarly galleries and artists have taken to exploring novel forms of sharing work, whether it be through exhibi- tions presented through the virtual world of Animal Crossing, or the onslaught of online view- ing rooms, digital art fairs and adjoining cultural programming that have seemingly sprouted from nowhere.
In response to this new frontier in which we find ourselves, Guerrero Gallery is proud to pres- ent Stimulus, a curatorial project staged in an abandoned warehouse on the outskirts of San Francisco. Existing as an online exhibition, Stimulus takes a tongue in cheek approach to the idea of online exhibitions, while also acting as a kind of performative spatial intervention that responds to the moment and the recent closing of Guerrero Gallery’s brick and mortar space due to the hardships that Covid-19 has imposed. Staging works by a variety of artists from across the United States, all of whom have played crucial parts in the gallery’s history and evolution, we begin to realize as we survey the works just how much our reading of each object and their dialogue with the surrounding space is shaped by our crisis at hand. An inflat- able limousine created by New York-based artist Steve Powers takes on new meaning, sitting dormant as most of our cars have been for the past few months as oil prices, emissions and road use have fallen off a cliff. A work by LA-based Andrew Schoultz, an embroidered Ameri- can flag made in China stretched over panel, coated in a drippy acrylic with a gold leaf finish suggests the kind of cheap veneer that some in power have tried to clumsily paint over such a disastrous situation. And the setting, a cavernous warehouse that once housed such vibrant activity yet currently sits quietly vacant yet ripe with potential, functioning as a potent meta- phor for so many of our cities and towns that have been temporarily shut down.
It’s with this sentiment in mind that we present Stimulus, an exhibition that pays testament to the weight of our current times yet is undergirded with a sense of hope–a sense of rebirth, of rethinking and reusing space and imbuing it with new context and meaning as we hopefully reemerge from this tragedy with new ideas and a renewed appreciation for our surroundings and one another.