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Nests for the End of the World


For this thought-provoking exhibition, the AGA commissioned artists to envision and create a ‘nest’ to cope with the end of the world; however it may come about. From hopeful and optimistic to humorous and ironic, these ‘nests’ offer reprieve, refuge, rejuvenation and difficult truths. This timely exhibition is a response to our current tumultuous and polarized world where we see the rise of Nationalism, the clashing of belief systems, environmental destruction and the fight to mitigate climate change. Nests will spark conversations and inspire you to think about what your own personal nest might be, how you face current challenges both big and small, and what the future might look like. 

Cindy Baker and Ruth Cuthand | Bruno Canadien and Niki Little | Jake Chakasim | Luanne Martineau Camille Turner

Organized by the Art Gallery of Alberta. Curated by Amery Calvelli, Catherine Crowston, Franchesca Hebert-Spence, Lindsey Sharman and Jessie Ray Short.

The exhibition includes a special interpretive project, “I Want Out,” created in partnership with local designers Leigh and Victoria Wright of VIGNETTES and Amos Kajner-Nonnekes of DESIGN etcetera. Mindful contributions were made by local collaborators Jason Purcell and Matthew Stepanic from the Glass Bookshop who curated a bibliography for the project, as well as yoga Instructor Tori Lunden who created a visualization exercise to accompany the exhibition. This space is a retreat from the outside world, a place of self-reflection, for us to think about how to deal with difficult times and potentially come to solutions before this time comes.

Please note: The interpretive space is now closed to the public, including access to the curated book selection/bibliography. We apologize for any inconvenience.


Amery Calvelli works to advance the public connection with architecture and design. She is a co-founder and Executive Director of the non-profit Design Talks Institute; co-editor of the online design publication FOLD; and teaches Design History at the University of Calgary’s Continuing Education Program. She hosted the CJSW radio program Space and Place for four years,interviewing international figures in design, architecture and people with stakes in the public realm. She has served on the Boards of the Portland Institute of Contemporary Art and the SFMOMA’s Contemporary Extension and has worked for designers such as Comme des Garçons, Giorgio Armani, and Agnès b.

Catherine Crowston is the Executive Director and Chief Curator of the Art Gallery of Alberta, having joined the gallery in 1998. From 1994-1997, Crowston was the Director/Curator of the Walter Phillips Gallery at The Banff Centre (Banff, Alberta) and Editor of the Walter Phillips Gallery Editions. Prior to this, she was Assistant Curator at the Art Gallery of York University, Toronto (1986-1994) and was both an Editor and Chair of the Board of Directors of Fuse Magazine in Toronto (1989-1995).

Franchesca Hebert-Spence headshot

Franchesca Hebert-Spence is a MFA candidate at the University of Winnipeg, in the Masters of Arts in Cultural Studies stream with a BFA in ceramics from Ishkabatens Waasa Gaa Inaabateg, Brandon University Visual and Aboriginal Arts program. Hebert-Spence’s grandmother was from Sagkeeng First Nation, Manitoba and her research focuses on identity both as an indigenous woman as well as a feminist. Hebert-Spence began her art journey as a maker which has created an empathetic lens within her curatorial praxis. Kinship is a common theme within her projects and those responsibilities direct the engagement she maintains within her community. 

Lindsey V. Sharman is Curator of the Art Gallery of Alberta. She has studied Art History and Curating in Canada, England, Switzerland and Austria, earning degrees from the University of Saskatchewan and the University of the Arts, Zurich.

Jessie Ray Short is an artist, filmmaker and independent curator whose cross disciplinary practice involves memory, visual culture and Métis history. In the past 10 years she has exhibited work nationally and internationally at venues including The Banff Centre for the Arts, M:ST Performative Arts Festival, Calgary AB, and at the Wairoa Māori Film Festival in Wairoa, Aotearoa (NZ). Jessie Ray has been the recipient of several grants from the Canada Council for the Arts, Ontario Arts Council and the Alberta Foundation for the Arts. As a curator she has had the opportunity to work on various projects most notably Jade Carpenter: Mourn at City of Calgary Open Spaces Gallery and Mixed Berries: Amanda Strong and Bracken Hanuse Corlett at Gallery 2, Grand Forks, BC. She has worked for the Ociciwan Contemporary Art Collective, based in Edmonton, AB, and currently works as a program coordinator for TRUCK Contemporary Art in Calgary, AB. Jessie Ray holds an MA degree from Brock University with a focus on contemporary Métis visual culture.

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Monday: closed
Tuesday: closed
Wednesday: closed
Thursday: 11am-7pm
Friday: 11am-5pm
Saturday: 11am-5pm
Sunday: closed


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2 Sir Winston Churchill Square
Edmonton, Alberta
Canada T5J 2C1