The VESTIGES Project was formed in 1984 as an ongoing, loosely-knit collective of artists and writers who share a common sense of place – New Orleans – and a common sensibility nurtured by the New Orleans environment. To VESTIGES Project participants, New Orleans signifies far more than merely a place on a map: it is an entity with a complex and eclectic culture made up of layer upon layer of remnants, relics, rituals, memories and myths and characterized by a hazy distinction between fiction and truth, facade and reality, past and present, that is peculiar to New Orleans.
The VESTIGES Project concluded its 25-year anniversary celebration VESTIGES Think Tank, a roving 3-year residency with the New Orleans’ Contemporary Arts Center. The installations LOSS. RITUAL. RELIC. Residue: The Archive at Newcomb College Center for Research on Women and VESTIGES OF NEW ORLEANS at Atlanta’s Buckhead Library were among these presentations.
From this residency, evolved the VESTIGES/Enactments 2013 series of dialogues, public art projects, publications and events curated by Jan Gilbert, Interim Director of Visual Arts at the Contemporary Arts Center, New Orleans (CAC) with sponsorship by the CAC and in partnership with various organizations and individuals.
Vestiges Projects have continued to be on view at Urban Sidewalk/Installation Space (US/IS) as well as traveled to the Netherlands as part of Kestvloed 1717-2017 and to St. Louis for the 10th anniversary exhibition of Katrina as The Vestiges Project Marking Memories at Reese Gallery.
Gilbert continues to share lessors learned and to participate in dialogues and as advisor to relief and resilience projects as the UK Performing City Resilience Project and initiatives engaging activist community response via art.