Behind The Scenes: Curating Off Topic

Beyond the Gallery

When it comes to installing a show in the PL130 Gallery so much planning and organizing happens before the curators come into the space to start hanging the prints. We thought that we would share this process with the community to give them a bit of the behind the scenes peek into all the magic that happens in order to put on these gallery shows. 

Our most recent install was for our current show Off Topic. This show features photographs from 42 individual photographers which makes it a bit more difficult to organize where each print will hang. Instead of doing this on a whim and in the gallery with the actual prints, we do the planning in Photoshop. 

Each wall is rendered in Photoshop where one inch equals one foot. Then we create frames for each size of print we have and begin arranging them in Photoshop so they nicely fit and look balanced. 

Here are some examples of the renderings:

Introduction Wall

Right of Projection Wall

Projector Wall

Once we have figured out the placement, then we decide which photos go nicely together and should be on the same wall. For shows that feature a few artists like our Moms With Lenses show we decided that each artist would have their work on one wall or section of the gallery. With shows like Off Topic or Best of the Year, we have more free range to decide which photos should be placed together. During this process we are constantly altering and editing the arrangement. Since there is such a great variety of subject matter within this show we felt that putting visually similar images near each other or images that were taken in a similar location to each other would bring a stronger sense of cohesion and create a narrative for the show. 

Introduction Wall

Left of Projection Wall

Projector Wall

White Wall

When the images have been printed hanging in the gallery can begin. This is a time where we are constantly referring to the renderings and calculating measurements so everything is hung neatly.

Sometimes we even make subtle changes to the arrangement while we are hanging. The amount of time it takes to hang a show varies on the amount of photos that are featured. Off Topic features over 70 prints which has taken us approximately three days to hang. 

Here is a time lapse of the gallery team hanging the introduction wall: 

We are very pleased with how it looks and hope to see you at the Gallery Open House on August 5th from 6-9pm. You can also view the show from 12-5pm Monday through Thursday until September 26th.

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