The Cleveland Convention and Visitors Bureau

Cleveland SGS, Cleveland Urban Design Collaborative, Ryan Griffs, Alison Pebworth, Temporary Travel Office, The Think Tank That Has Yet to Be Named
May 11 - July 13, 2012

SPACES will become the unofficial visitors center for Cleveland—a city with its own unique charms—in its exhibition The Cleveland Convention and Visitors Bureau (May 11 ? July 13, 2012). This project seeks to engage the idea of tourism through the lens of a city that is not a traditional tourist destination. Participating artists engage Cleveland as a subject and medium in both critical and laudatory way—show that the city is singular and generic, foreign and familiar, and how that plays into notions of nostalgia, pilgrimage, place, history, community, displacement, commerce, and attraction.

The front gallery of SPACES will be converted into an ad hoc visitors center complete with postcards, brochures, a tea room and a friendly staff to guide visitors through the exhibition and the city. Deeper into the space, visitors will encounter artist projects from Cleveland SGS (SPACES artists-in-residence from Cleveland, OH), the Cleveland Urban Design Collaborative (Cleveland OH), Alison Pebworth (SPACES artist-in-residence from San Francisco, CA), Temporary Travel Office (Chicago, IL), and The Think Tank That Has Yet to Be Named (Philadelphia, PA and Iowa City, Iowa).

The artist collective Cleveland SGS will unleash a "synchronized awareness campaign" on the city, a set of carefully crafted advertisements meant to draw travelers to their installation at SPACES—the long-anticipated tourist destination, Essence Unique Shrine and Showroom. The shrine pulls from the visual language of storefront spiritualists, dream books, tourist brochures, and the symbolic possibilities of parlor games to delve into traditions of spiritual tourism in Cleveland. Visitors are invited to immerse themselves in the sensory chaos of a spiritual destination devoted to the vagaries of chance, faith, and gambling all at once. The wisdom of Reverend True, Cleveland's forgotten Master Specialist—to whom SGS dedicates this shrine—knows the score when it comes to calculating odds from the mystical implications of games and luck.

The Cleveland Urban Design Collaborative (CUDC) will highlight many of the places in Cleveland that could become major tourist destinations, but aren't destinations just yet. The CUDC's contribution is a model depicting tourist destinations of the future—some very plausible and others that are more hypothetical. In conjunction, they will be organizing a tour to two of these future tourist spots.

Alison Pebworth's Beautiful Possibility Project explores American culture through its lost and obscured histories. The prototypes of early American Traveling shows inform a social practice that takes her on the road with a ten-month traveling exhibition. As she tours across the country, venues for the exhibition serve as headquarters for assimilating local research and engaging the public in interactive projects that, in turn, inform her studio practice. Alison will bring her show to SPACES in late May, but she will also be mailing SPACES postcards from her cross-country trip to be included in the exhibition.

Temporary Travel Office's Right to the Riparian City addresses Doan Brook, a waterway that flows from Shaker Heights, through Cleveland and into Lake Erie. This project proposes that the boundaries of the Doan Brook Watershed be recognized as both a political and ecological territory. The Travel Office will produce visual markers of the Watershed's boundaries and documents that position visitors and residents in relation to the Watershed.

The Think Tank That Has Yet to Be Named adapts the ecological model of forest succession in order to explore the ways in which cities change over time through a cyclical process of growth, stagnation, disaster, abandonment and revitalization. Visitors to the project are invited to play with a physical manifestation of the urban succession model and consider their own city and neighborhoods in light of this analytical framework.

SPACES on Tour:

On bike, on foot and via caravan, you're invited to follow the lead of local luminaries on tours of Cleveland that show us the city through their eyes. Part of the The Cleveland Convention and Visitors Bureau exhibition at SPACES (May 11 ? July 13, 2012).

> Walking Tour of Historical, Useful and Tasty Weeds
with Leslie Williams, Herbalist and Herbal Educator

Saturday, May 19, 2012, 11:00AM - 12:30PM
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> An East Cleveland Walking Tour of Industry, Art, and Architecture
With Christopher Busta-Peck, Founding Editor of Cleveland Area History

Saturday, May 26, 2012, 12:00PM - 2:00PM
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> Ohio City Bike Co-op Social Ride
Saturday, June 02, 2012, 10:00AM - 12:00PM
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> Twilight Rocket Excursion to Cleveland's Tourist Attractions of the Future
With the Cleveland Urban Design Collaborative

Thursday, June 28, 2012, 6:00PM - 9:00PM
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> Goodnight Cleveland: A Little Miss Cleveland Bus Tour
Friday, July 13, 2012, 8:00PM - 1:00AM
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Temporary Travel Office's residency was made possible in part through support from the National Performance Network's Visual Artists Network. Major contributors are the Andy Warhol Foundation for the Visual Arts, the Joan Mitchell Foundation, and the Nathan Cummings Foundation.

Video and Streaming Media

Cool Cleveland Interviews Christopher Lynn about The Cleveland Convention and Visitors Bureau


National Performance Network Visual Artist Network

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This project is a part of the SPACES R&D Program.

The R&D (Research & Development) program invites artists, curators and other cultural producers to articulate their research and development of ideas and objects through a supported exhibition or project. These exhibitions and projects may be group, solo, or collaborative endeavors.

Artists, Apply for this Program.

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