CounterPULSE tries out some fresh moves with its Queer Series of revealing duets
"Actually, failure is just as valid a result as success," says Phelps. "When we had been building failure out of every income model we had, we'd also been building out risk from some of the artistic selections, and from the way we were making artistic selections. We've really only just recently moved into curating in the first place. Before we were like, we have a space, if you want to do a show, come ask us and we'll work it out. [In this] season, every artist was someone we approached and worked with, found out ways that they could intersect with CounterPULSE, what was financially viable for us and for them, what was artistically interesting for us and for them — actually build something from the inside out, instead of the outside in."
Despite the considerate design in the program, Phelps calls it more art than science and insists it's all "still a very organic process," noting that the queer label is at least partly one of sheer convenience.
"I mean, 'queer' is basically the only banner that you could fly over that season, and only because it is so indistinct — because actually each of these works is hugely different. So there's still a patchwork element to it, but it's a little bit more deliberate [than usual]," she explains, laughing at the metaphor carrying her away. "At least the patches were picked out, and the fabric was cut to shape before they were added to the quilt this time." *