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K-W Art Gallery to open with a BigBang!

After four months of renovations, the gallery will be hosting the BigBang!, a one night only event on Friday featuring the work of two Guelph artists, Jenn E. Norton and Steph Yates.

Guelph artists have created a cosmic-like atmosphere for Friday event

To demonstrate size, artists Jenn E. Norton (left) and Steph Yates (right) crawled inside on of the larger floating inflatables that will be floating at the K-W Art Gallery's BigBang! event.

The Kitchener-Waterloo Art Gallery is going to opens its doors this Friday with a BigBang!

After four months of renovations, the gallery will be hosting a one night only event featuring the work of two Guelph artists, Jenn E. Norton and Steph Yates.

Guelph artists Jenn E. Norton (left) and Steph Yates (right) have been working together to create a cosmic atmosphere for the Kitchener-Waterloo Art Gallery's BigBang! event on Friday April 7. (Carmen Ponciano)

"It's unlike anything we have done before," said Nicole Neufeld, director of public programs at the K-W Art Gallery.

"We had a bit of time between exhibitions and we decided to invite two artists, Jenn E. Norton and Steph Yates, to come over to the gallery and take over the gallery space."

Norton and Yates have been working together to create a cosmic-like atmosphere in the gallery by using multiple video projections on floating inflatable forms.

Norton explains that by projecting different oceanic and celestial animations on the inflatable forms will give the impression that the room is constantly breathing and changing.

Steph Yates (left) and Jenn E. Norton (right) are blowing up one of the many inflatable forms that will be floating during the BigBang! event at the K-W Art Gallery. (Carmen Ponciano)

"There is a fan inside the forms that is timed with the video so it's going to give an undulating kind of breathing effect and the room is going to look like it's always changing its shape," she said.  

Yates adds that the pieces are connected, adding a flow from one structure to the next.

Norton and Yates had experimented with the idea of inflatables in a previous project they had worked on in January and saw the potential to extend that idea to the BigBang!

Steph Yates(left) and Jenn E. Norton (right) demonstrating the size of one of the many inflatable forms that will be featured during the BigBang! event on Friday. (Carmen Ponciano)

"While we were experimenting on that project, we saw the potential for play with inflatables for how light they were, how easy they were, and how quick it was to make something that had huge presence that could take up a lot of space," said Yates.

Guelph artist Steph Yates inside one of the larger inflatable forms. (Carmen Ponciano)

"And transforming the space further as it was the reopening of the main gallery space after it's been renovated, I was playing with the idea of a building being an immutable form and changing the structure during the duration of the evening," Norton added.

The BigBang! event will also have music, an augmented scavenger hunt and cosmic cocktails created by The Berlin. Proceeds from the event will go towards the gallery's education programs such as the Summer Art Camp Bursary.