Ken Lum’s “Four Boats Stranded” at the Vancouver Art Gallery


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Essay #: 058891
Total text length is 7,000 characters (approximately 4.8 pages).

Excerpts from the Paper

The beginning:
Ken Lum’s "Four Boats Stranded" at the Vancouver Art Gallery
The development, use and interpretation of public art is changing, according to two recent articles created to inform readers about the Ken Lum piece “Four Boats Stranded,” which was created through a grant for the Vancouver Art Gallery. While Melanie O’Brian details the history of the piece and how it acts to forge connections with the Vancouver community on many different levels, Carla Benzan provides a critical analysis of the same piece’s ability to demonstrate disconnections with the community. This essay serves to reflect upon the image of Ken Lum’s piece as imagined by these two writers, and consider historical interpretations of the piece in context. The essay will argue...
The end:
.....ortunity to explore the real issues behind the sculpture and its production, within the context of modern art development. There is a necessity in bringing to light the fact that creating art is not, in itself, separate from the same forces that inspire it, and that capitalist and therefore colonialist motives are evident in the actions of the Vancouver Art Gallery and its artists. In this way, reading Benzan’s piece ultimately serves to create a deeper dialogue about Ken Lum’s “Four Boats Stranded.”
O’Brian, M. “Ken Lum Four Boats Stranded: Red and Yellow, Black
and White.” Vancouver Art Gallery brochure, 2001.
Benzan, C. "Going Nowhere Fast: Ken Lum, Four Boats Stranded,
and the Aporia of ‘Public Art'." WRECK 2.2 (2008): 53-66.