This book takes the reader on a thematic journey through the rooms of a former house in Cape Town that Association for Visual Arts (AVA) has, since 1971, called home. The architectural records which inspire this narrative structure are lodged in the AVA Archive, comprising a vast array of physical documents of care, to which Flipside creatively responds. This collection spans apartheid and South Africa’s democratic era, coinciding with AVA’s own redirection as an autonomous organisation in 1995, to tell a larger sociopolitical tale. Gurney follows the trail of ‘inadvertent archive’ – unexpected or fugitive artefacts that startle, diverge, or surprise, to see where they might lead. In so doing, Flipside surfaces the invisible custodial labour in AVA’s double act of exhibition making (as a non-profit gallery) and institution building (as an association) -- from the backroom perspective. Her narrative, interrupted by voices from the stacks, deliberately links space and (re)imagination to reject structural discontinuities and show how interlinked things truly are.
Kim Gurney: Flipside