May and June at Unit/Pitt


The current exhibition, Cultivating Equilibrium will be extended until Thursday, May 21.

This coincides with ISSUE Magazine‘s one-year anniversary launch. So come by for the last chance to see the installation by Patrick Campbell and Madison Killo, stay for a drink and pick up a copy of the new magazine. This coming issue features work by Stephane Bernard, Ileanna Cheladyn, Michael Cook, Shauna Doherty, Alice Fleerackers, Brittney Groetelaars, Stacey Ho, Stella Hsu Brennan Kelly, Steffanie Ling, Brynn McNab, Erik Rzepka,  and Antoni Wojtyra.

We will also be launching an information booklet for emerging artists put together by Jenn Dickieson, Alex Hill, Barbara Matthews, and Mona Min.  It outlines basic information about exhibition spaces in Vancouver, like how to apply, what you can expect in terms of payment or sales, and what kind of work they are looking for.

Coming up in June, an exhibition of work by Elizabeth Fischer entitled Orphans and Dogs opens on June 12th at 8pm with a performance by the artist at 10pm.

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Book launch Thursday, April 30

Collective walks publications promoCollective Walks/Spaces of Contestation Publications Launch

April 30, 2015, 7pm

UNIT/PITT Projects will launch artists’ books by Zoe Kreye and Catherine Grau; Didier Morelli; and Mariane Bourcheix-Laporte. These publications are part of the project Collective Walks/Spaces of Contestation, curated by Mariane Bourcheix-Laporte, which unfolded as a series of performances, public actions, lectures, and an exhibition presented by UNIT/PITT in 2013 and 2014 with the assistance of our presenting partners, the SFU Institute for the Humanities and the SFU Vancity Office for Community Engagement. Collective Walks/Spaces of Contestation examined the collective walk/protest/public demonstration as both a performance and a social formation with, at its core, four collaborations between artists and community organizations. The publications were produced retroactively and act as expanded documents of the artists’ works and the curator’s thought process in relation to this endeavour.

Unlearning Walks by Zoe Kreye and Catherine Grau (ed. Mariane Bourcheix-Laporte)
Unlearning Walks is a chronicle and blueprint for the work of the Unlearning Walking Club, a project of artists Zoe Kreye and Catherine Grau. Continuing their research into the ways in which dominant experiential paradigms can be deconstructed through movement, playfulness and heightened awareness of the body’s relation to space, the artists devised a series of exercises to venture into the uncharted territory of sensorial and intuitive unlearning.

La fête permanente by Didier Morelli (ed. Mariane Bourcheix-Laporte)
Didier Morelli’s La Fête Permanente borrows the name of Robert Filliou and George Brecht’s Eternal Network to describe his collaboration with the members of Britannia High School’s Outreach Alternative Program in Vancouver. Over several weeks, the students evolved a collective practice exploring the formal and social implications of collective action in space. La fête permanente presents a collection of the artist’s thoughts and documentation of the students’ contributions.

TRACTS by Mariane Bourcheix-Laporte
TRACTS is an artist’s book that serves as a curatorial manifesto for Collective Walks/Spaces of Contestation, a series of talks, public actions, publications, performances, and an exhibition curated by Mariane Bourcheix-Laporte in 2013-2014.

UNIT/PITT is grateful for the assistance of the Canada Council, the British Columbia Arts Council, and the City of Vancouver; we are particularly grateful to individual donors, volunteers, artists, and cultural workers, without whom we would be unable to continue. The Collective Walks/Spaces of Contestation project was also assisted by a grant from The Hamber Foundation.

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Opening this Thursday at 7pm: Cultivating Equilibrium

Screen shot 2015-03-26 at 12.27.20 PMThis Thursday evening, slip into the twilight of Cultivating Equilibrium, Patrick Campbell and Madison Killo’s transformative installation in the Unit/Pitt gallery space.  The artists have taken the already transplanted, absurd, and strange site of the Bloedel Conservatory, which rests as a crystalline tropicalia at the top of Vancouver’s Little Mountain, and transmitted the immersive environment into the equally fantastical space of the gallery.

Screen shot 2015-03-26 at 12.26.22 PM

Seeking to engage and disorient on multiple sensorial levels, the exhibition constructs the space according to an underlying logic that is alternatively attuned and awry with the natural. Brynn McNab has contributed a piece of writing that engages the space in a site / non-site relationship. Drop in, sip a cocktail, breathe the air, and adjust your eyes.  Opens at 7pm.

Screen shot 2015-03-26 at 12.27.38 PM

Madison Killo is an artist and curator living in Vancouver, Canada. She received her BFA from Emily Carr University of Art and Design in 2014. In December 2014, she curated the exhibition ‘Beginning the Shape’ at the Or Gallery. Through sculptural installations, her work architects atmospheres through the lens of existential, metaphysical and ontological affects. Structured through a theoretical and meditative process, they focus on the presentation of space as platform for experience.

Patrick Campbell is an artist and curator based in Vancouver, Canada. He received his BFA from Emily Carr in 2010. His work highlights and acknowledges the presence of societal histories. Informed by his formal training in photography, he seeks to preserve the lasting ephemera of these architectures. His practice often uses traditional cinematic modes of production – situated in installations that enhance the construction of place. The content of his work mediates between the public and the private, structuring narratives around fragments of the every day.


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Coming up in March: An Exact Vertigo, a critical text and contemporary dance series

An Exact Vertigo Calendar

a residency/library/mini festival/community invitation/dancing museum/book publication/lecture series/workshop series/utopia.

An Exact Vertigo is an invitation to Vancouver’s contemporary dance and contemporary art communities to engage in discussion surrounding critical theory, text, and movement. The project consists of multiple actions: A free speaker and workshop series open to the public and accessible to non-dancers, the creation of a library of open-source critical writing, and the use of the 650 square-foot Unit/Pitt exhibition space as an alternative venue for research, development, and rehearsal by independent choreographers for their current projects.

As a way of engaging with the project’s larger theme, we will ask participants to have a conversation about their experience with the project’s curators Brynn McNab and Alexa Mardon. These interviews, framed by curatorial essays, will be published in book form.

By inviting dancemakers and dance-thinkers with varying approaches to participate in An Exact Vertigo, we aim to broaden the city’s traditional audience for discussion around contemporary dance, and to offer space for current dancemakers to re-imagine their practices in a new context.

More details about specific workshops are below. All activities, workshops, reading hours, and talks are open to the public and accessible to those not previously trained in dance.

Week 1: March 4-8

Week 2: March 11-14

Week 3: March 18-22 

Week 4: March 25-29

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Winter Activity

The Pitt is awakening from the holidays mid-January this year. Here is some of what you can expect from us in the next few months!

Our first exhibition, The Facility for Consideration, runs January 16 – February 28th. Featuring work by Derek Coulombe, Tom Hsu, Kari Kleinmann, and Lida Pawliuk, and curated by Brynn McNab, this exhibition looks at two dimensional translations of various aspects of the built environment.
Come by for the opening reception January 15 at 7pm.
This project and will also be accompanied by the publication of a small edition of a handmade photography/fiction book collaboration, launch date TBA.

ISSUE Magazine launches its 4th issue February 14th, completing the first year of its revival!
This upcoming issue features writing from Antoni Wojtyra, Soraya Pathman, Carla Stewart, and many other voices, old and new. There will be drawings made especially for us by Troy Lovegates and Andrea Flockhart, with a cover designed by Madison Killo.

In March, UNIT/PITT is foraying into Vancouver’s contemporary dance world with a project under the title of An Exact Vertigo, offering local choreographers a research and rehearsal space within the gallery in return for engagement with a larger critical theory project which includes workshops and lectures open and free for the public, a library of open source texts, and an original publication. Participating artists include Justine Chambers, Jen Weih, and Benjamin Kamino. Curated by Alexa Mardon and Brynn McNab.

Stay tuned for more events in 2015! We will be entering our 40th year as an organization, it is bound to be every bit as chaotic and exciting as the last 39.

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Donate now, for another 40 years of glorious chaos

Wrong_Wave_promo_image_SFUThis is yet another message telling you to donate to something before the year runs out. Seriously, you should. There are a lot of organizations out there who do important, serious, well-established work that demands your unquestioning respect.

We’re not one of those.

For almost forty years the Pitt has done odd, risky, and sometimes ill-advised projects sometimes with artists you have never heard of, or with artists who haven’t been taken seriously, or with artists who are leaving their “normal” work to try something different. We ask people who have never curated gallery shows before to curate exhibitions and performances and screenings. We publish a quarterly magazine of local art reviews even though every other magazine like that in Vancouver history has gone down the tubes.

In short, if you want to support a visual art organization that does everything the right way, that’s not us. But if you think that there is some kind of virtue in doing things the wrong way, you should definitely support UNIT/PITT.

Or don’t. It might not be your kind of thing. It’s up to you.

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Until January

marx-santaWe’ll be closed until January. Watch our site for announcements of our 2015 exhibitions and events — you can also subscribe to our mailing list or follow us on Facebook or Twitter. Thanks for your support in 2014!

(And if you want to help us grow and prosper in 2015, donate!)

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Studio Showcase and Benefit at 236

Hidden from view behind Unit/Pitt Projects’ gallery, are the workspaces of over 50 artists, designers, writers, and curators who play an essential role in the cultural landscape of Vancouver. Come November 14th, a selection of their work will be on display to the public in the gallery. Adapting a new symbiotic model which provides administration and start-up funds for the development of artists’ studios as well as affording an artist-run gallery with exhibition space, Unit/Pitt Projects has set out to build a long-lasting creative community at 236 East Pender that provides stable, safe, secure, and affordable workspaces for some of the city’s many cultural producers.

After signing a 15 year lease and taking over the building in May 2013, we immediately started renovations on the building, opening up studios for rent in September of that year. Grasping this opportunity was not effortless: it took long hours of hard work from everyone involved, including our joint venture partners from 221A, and our interns and volunteers; it took some careful control of expenses, and sacrifices here and there; and as always, it wouldn’t have been possible without the support of our community: artists, curators, studio tenants, donors, cultural workers, and everyone else.

We would like to take this opportunity, one year later, to showcase the work that has gone on behind the closed doors of the studio spaces at 236 E Pender. We will be hosting an exhibition, silent auction, and retail sale in the gallery space to celebrate. The work that will be available for purchase runs the gamut from artist’s books, limited edition prints, handmade t-shirts, to paintings, drawings, sculpture, collage, and 3D printed goods.

This showcase and benefit will take place on Friday November 14th, 7-11pm, in the Unit/Pitt gallery space at 236 East Pender Street. 50% of the sale of each individual artwork will go to the artist, with the other 50% going to building upgrades for the studio spaces. Refreshments will also be available. The exhibition will be open to the public until Sunday, November 23rd. Come out and support this flourishing artist’s community! Check our Facebook event or our Instagram feed for updates, previews, and details.

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Be There: The Monochrome Shop Closing Party


Are you still unsure whether “Asian Wood, Indian Yellow” or “Portrait of a Young Girl” would look best above your fireplace? Are you still wondering which friends to give comic sans zeros to for Christmas, and how many they should each get? Well, it’s time to decide. The Monochrome Shop is closing its doors.

Come celebrate with us and join the artists for a casual discussion about selling, reluctance, and other motivating ideas behind the project, followed by refreshments and various kinds of exchange.

Free limited edition print available for the first 50 people through the door. Everything else, still for sale.

Saturday October 11. 7-11pm.

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Unit/Pitt presents Wrong Wave 2014: Art Rock? Reprise

wrongThree nights of art rock!
Festival pass, $20 in advance.

Thursday October 16 at The Fox Cabaret
July Fourth Toilet – Death Prizm – Late Spring
$10 at door, or buy festival pass
Doors: 7:30

Friday October 17th at the Western Front
the grain of the voice an evening with Frog Eyes – Nicholas Kgrovich – Eden Veaudry
$8 at door, or buy festival pass
Doors: 7:30

Saturday October 18th at the Djavad Mowafaghian World Art Centre at SFU Woodwards
Mecca Normal – Fake Tears
$5 at door, or buy festival pass
Doors: 7:30

This year’s festival of artists who rock and rockers that art, spans three nights at three venues, kicking off at The Fox Cabaret on Thursday October 16th to celebrate the 20th Anniversary of Vancouver art rock legends, July Fourth Toilet with local acts Death Prizm and Late Spring.

WWJ4wideflatWith its first performance in 1994, July Fourth Toilet have made it their mandate to never perform the same show twice. Show themes for this multi-piece, multi-instrumental co-ed bargain basement technicolor variety revue have included thirty second songs and medleys, as well as tributes to tea, candy, Davy Jones and the Texas Chainsaw Massacre, “Their Satanic Majesties Request”, September 11th, 2012, a 25th Anniversary Show after only a year of being around, and legendary songwriter Paul Williams (with Paul Williams enjoying the show from ten feet away). Named by Gregg Turkington and John Singer of the anarchic and confrontationally comedic two piece Zip Code Rapists, July Fourth Toilet ritualistically combines and transcends pop song craft, versatile musicianship, performance, non-musicians, and pure improvisation to create their unique and inimitable sound and persona.

They’ve had 80 members ranging from the ages of 8 to 80 over the years. Their second album “July Fourth Toilet Presents Balls Boogie Featuring Me and Bobby McGee Plus: Kentucky Whore and Many Others!” got Julian Cope’s vinyl award for June, 2009.


Late Spring was formed in 2013 by local art school grads turned rockers. They are Casey (formerly of Kick Evrything), Nik, Ryan, and Nat Mutter. Their sound combines raw and dirty with melodic dream pop elements. They are recording their first single this autumn.

death prizm tornado

Death Prizm is 777 arcs of light (rainbows) across a Desert sky. Navajo prints,in the lazy afternoon, “L.A. crime drama-watching” readers,thinkers and lovers, all over the world. Rejoice. Experimental tape loop and synthesizer origins have evolved into a million pin-pricks of blood; Cascading into a river of cacophonous guitar,cello,abandoned mattresses,and deathbed crooning. Hailing outta’ “Substance Abuse” country…

This isn’t Post-Rock; This is post-Music.

Death Prizm
Megan Johnson: Bass, Werner Thomas: Vocals, Jay Hehn: Drums
Leanne Chapman: Cello / Keyboards, S Chalmers: Guitar

Venue: Fox Cabaret 2321 Main Street
Doors: 7.30
TIX: 10$ at door or eventbrite, festival pass $20 at eventbrite

Friday October 17th, Western Front, the grain of the voice

edenveaudryFriday night at the Western Front features three local musical acts, each drawing out myriad qualities of the voice in song; Frog Eyes, Nicholas Kgrovich, and Eden Veaudry.

Frog Eyes was formed in 2001 by Carey Mercer with his wife, Melanie Campbell. Mercer sings with a range in breadth and intensity framed and lifted by his image rich lyrics of loss, and the potential of revolutionary movements, among others. Lyrics, for Mercer, sit atop of the music to help interpret the sounds. It has been an epic year for Mercer: he released his sixth record, Carey’s Cold Spring, a beautiful and harrowing work, now on Toronto-based label Paper Bag Records. As well, he published his first collection of prose, Clouds of Evil, all while battling throat cancer. Back in good health, Mercer and Frog Eyes began touring the record this past summer. Mercer’s latest performance in Seattle was a chamber string ensemble backed version of Frog Eyes songs arranged by composer Jherek Bischoff, highlighting the versatility of Mercer’s writing and the strength of his voice.

Nicholas Krgovich is a songwriter and multi-instrumentalist best known for his work with NO KIDS, GIGI, P:ANO and MOUNT EERIE. He has been releasing records under various monikers since P:ANO’s acclaimed chamber pop debut “When It’s Dark And It’s Summer” in 2002, and most recently to the singular pop dreams released under his full legal name NICHOLAS KRGOVICH. With songs that owe as much to the Great American Songbook as to perennial favourites like Sade, Prefab Sprout and The Blue Nile, Krgovich creates a dreamland where palm trees cast impossibly long shadows, courtyard swimming pools glow at night, and washed-up movie stars haunt the streets looking for love. His local release on JAZ records last year, Who Cares? draws out the delicate beauty of his singing voice and the power of the song laid bare, accompanied by sparse guitar and piano. He has a brand new album,On Sunset, out 9/23 on Krgovich’s own NK World Service and Tin Angel.

Eden VeaudryEden Veaudry‘s practice incorporates textiles, video, drawing and sound. Recent exhibitions and performances include Conference On the Wave at CSA Space in Vancouver (2014), Shape Painter at the Audio Foundation in Auckland NZ (2013) and Joining the Periphery at VIVO Media Arts Centre in Vancouver (2012). Veaudry will perform new sound and video work. Her sound explorations are concerned mainly with the limits of the modulated voice through pedals, which she meets visually through images of her apartment and studio, containers and objects of her life and work, abstracted through layers of video processing.

Venue: Western Front 303 East 8th Avenue
Doors: 7.30, show at 8 pm
TIX: $8 at door or eventbrite, all festival pass $20 at Eventbrite

Wrong Wave 2014 wraps up on Saturday October 18th with two acts to the power of two, at the Djavad Mowafaghian World Art Centre at SFU Woodwards co-presented by SFU’s Vancity Office of Community Engagement.

meccanormal photo by Sean RaggettMecca Normal is described by music writer Douglas Wolk as“Arguably the greatest rock band without a rhythm section ever, the duo of acid-voiced singer Jean Smith and guitar hero David Lester must be seen to be believed.”

Jean Smith and David Lester formed Mecca Normal in 1984 with the express interest in changing the world. Writer Jean Smith turned her zine Smarten UP! -a How to Change the World Publication- into a record label to release the first Mecca Normal record in 1986.

Mecca Normal have and continue to influence and advocate changing the world through poetry, music, art, film and literature with thirty years on the scene and thirteen records under their belts. Mecca Normal is known as a fore-runner and inspiration to the riot grrrl movement in the 90s. As part of the regional D-I-Y scene at that time, Mecca Normal co-founded the Black Wedge – anti-authoritarian poets and minimalist musicians “setting wild hearts free, spreading the damn difficult word of how to combine poetry with activist resistance culture”.

In 2010 Smith and Lester launched The Black Dot Museum of Political Art with a four-person exhibit in Olympia.

Much anticipated is Mecca Normal‘s 2014 Fall release, “Empathy for the Evil” on M’lady’s Records, produced by KRAMER and recorded in Miami by Rat Bastard, out September 30th.

Fake Tears

Fake Tears is a synth pop duo from Vancouver, with veterans Larissa Loyva (Kellarissa; p:ano) and Elisha Rembold (Lost Lovers Brigade; Shimmering Stars). They have been singing and playing their respective MicroKorgs together for 3 years, drawing inspiration from the beach, matters of the heart, night clubs, and robots.

Venue: SFU Woodwards Djavad Mowafaghian World Art Centre, 149 West Hastings, Rm 2555

Doors: 7.30

TIX: $5 at door or at eventbrite, all festival pass $20 at Eventbrite

Wrong Wave began back in the 1980s at the original Helen Pitt Gallery and was revived in 2011 by Unit/Pitt (formerly the Helen Pitt Gallery). The festival celebrates the long Vancouver tradition of Art Rock; artists who rock, and rockers who make art.

Wrong Wave 2014: Art Rock? Reprise features the drawing on three posters by three artists in the festival’s featured acts; Jean Smith of Mecca Normal, Robert Dayton of July Fourth Toilet, and Carey Mercer of Frog Eyes.

check and for further details and updates

Tickets available at doors and at EventBrite

Programmer: Sydney Hermant

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