Centre A is a leading public art gallery currently situated in the heart of Vancouver’s Chinatown, on the unceded Coast Salish Territories of the Musqueam, Squamish, and Tsleil-Waututh peoples.
Centre A’s mandate is to be an engaged participant in the ongoing production of a pluralistic and democratic society. We strive to activate contemporary art’s vital role in building and understanding the long and dynamic Asia-Canada relationship while tackling questions of broader concern from Asian and Asian-diasporic perspectives. Amidst the absence of institutional commitment in Canada to contemporary art as a vital site for social engagement and critical cultural production in local, migrant, and global Asian contexts, the gallery has continued to be dedicated to:
Supporting the creation of new works by Asian and Asian-diasporic artists in Canada, particularly emerging artists and artists within the Asian milieu whose voices are underrepresented due to the particular intersectional spaces that they occupy; facilitating collaboration and creative exchange between Asian artists in Canada and abroad, in order to engage critically with local, regional and national concerns from a global perspective; fostering meaningful relationships with local arts organizations, collectives, community organizations and groups within the Asian community and beyond; and engaging meaningfully with the call for Reconciliation and contribute to the understanding and navigation of non-European settler identities from Asian perspectives.
While we play an active role in community enlivenment and conviviality, we are a means for broader cultural productivity; a local and transnational community-building apparatus that acts as a conduit for the contest of ideas and a site for the contemplation of issues of contemporary concern.
In addition to our exhibition space, we house a reading room with one of the best collections of Asian art books in the country, including the Finlayson Collection of Rare Asian Art Books. In these facilities and beyond, we rigorously engage in culture-making through research, curatorial engagement with artists, mentorship of emerging arts professionals, presentation of works, public dialogues and various forms of documentation.