Launched in 1982, Neutral Ground Artist-Run Centre is a non-profit organization dedicated to developing opportunities for artists and engaging the public with emerging, experimental, multidisciplinary artistic practices. Neutral Ground is located in oskana ka-asastēki, also known as Regina, Saskatchewan. Primarily a public gallery, Neutral Ground operates on Treaty 4 land, which encompasses the territories of the nêhiyawak, Anihšināpēk, Dakota, Lakota, and Nakoda, and the homeland of the Métis/Michif Nation.
Neutral Ground aims to create an equitable and inclusive experience for artists, the membership and community stakeholders, in our collective pursuit of a greater public understanding and appreciation of multidisciplinary art.
Neutral Ground is a member-driven organization that proudly engages diverse audiences with contemporary visual and multidisciplinary art by:
- Providing resources and support to artists that enable the realization of new work
- Providing venues for exhibitions and other programming, such as artist talks, workshops and critical writing opportunities
- Engaging audiences in responsive critical dialogues that consider art as it relates to social, political and cultural forces.
Images 1-3: Nida Home Doherty, “Neutral Ground,” floating installation and performance in Wascana Lake, SK. (1982).
Art + Decolonization, Anti-Racism & Anti-Oppression
Art + Juried through Open Calls
Art + Experimentation
Art + Respectful Collaboration
Equity & Anti-Oppression Statement
Neutral Ground recognizes that many people face systemic forms of oppression due to intersecting imbalances of power. Neutral Ground values lived experiences and non-Western ways of knowing and being as powerful sources of knowledge. The organisation addresses imbalances through the representation of diverse identities within its programming, informed through a juried artwork selection process. Neutral Ground is committed to promoting, exhibiting and presenting the work of systemically underrepresented artists inclusive of race, religion, national or ethnic origin, colour, education, gender, age or physical or mental disability, or any intersections of and beyond these identities.
Neutral Ground’s programming of exhibitions, performances, workshops, etc, reflect Neutral Ground’s goal of working toward removing systemic barriers to aid representation and relationship-building through: Community partnerships; respect, care, and access practices; jury composition and consensus based decision-making; and accessibility in calls for proposals and service to exhibiting artists.
History of Neutral Ground
Neutral Ground was incorporated in 1982 by a group of artists and educators from diverse artistic disciplines. They held the shared goals of developing awareness and opportunities for both artists and the general public to engage in emerging, innovative, experimental and hybrid (visual) art practices. Neutral Ground’s Articles of Incorporation outline a broad and inclusive field of activity including:
- providing a forum for the production, exhibition, and presentation of experimental art practices from across the visual and media arts;
- encouraging collaboration and dialogue for the exchange of ideas, information, and resources;
- stimulating innovation in artistic expression;
- providing a higher profile for artist working in experimental and interdisciplinary art forms.
These goals, outlined in Neutral Ground’s original articles of incorporation, are still relevant and central to the programming and outreach that Neutral Ground provides to surrounding communities.
Neutral Ground is a member-driven artist-run-centre, governed by a Board of Directors, the majority of whom are practicing artists and arts professionals. Since the 1980’s Neutral Ground has received funding from the Canada Council for the Arts, the Saskatchewan Arts Board, and the City of Regina.
Over the past thirty-five years Neutral Ground’s programming, including the SOIL Media Art & Technology project which ran from 1996-2015, has presented a wide range of artists and media. This programming has included experimental two-dimensional and installation-based works, works in electronic arts, video, performance, sound art, and new music. The organization has long-held partnerships with local arts organizations including Sâkêwêwak First Nations Artists’ Collective, Dorkbot, Holophon Audio Arts, Curtain Razors, New Dance Horizons, Queer City Cinema/Performatorium, the Dunlop Art Gallery and the MacKenzie Art Gallery, as well as with national organizations like the 7a&11d performance festival in Toronto. Over its history, Neutral Ground has worked with countless curators, programmers, and artists of diverse backgrounds and art practices.
In early 2018 the organization relocated from it’s long-term, second-story location to a newly renovated, accessible, street-level gallery space. Located on a busy pedestrian-only street in the heart of Regina’s downtown, this new location is highly visible to a broad public and has hosted growing audiences for opening receptions, workshops, partnership events and artist talks since its inaugural opening in April 2018.