- 1974-1999 (Creation)
Level of description
Extent and medium
9.78 m of textual records and other materials
Name of creator
Mercer Union was created by former members of A.C.T. in 1979 to operate as an artist-run, non-profit cooperative gallery. Twelve founders contributed financially to the rental of a ground floor space at 29 Mercer Street and planned to mix local, regional, national and international exhibits, collaborating with other artist-run programs. Its mandate was to exhibit new work in the most advanced forms of painting and sculpture that was not receiving exposure in the commercial and public galleries. Performance art, installations and music were incorporated into the programming, which has continued to represent innovative and sometimes controversial material. Twelve board members are elected by dues-paying members and serve on the various committees (programming, curatorial, etc), with the help of a small paid staff. The gallery moved to 333 Adelaide Street West, 5th floor in 1981 and 439 King Street West in 1994. Their present location is 37 Lisgar Street; current information about the gallery can be obtained at www.mercerunion.org.
Immediate source of acquisition or transfer
Fonds acquired from Mercer Union in 1999
Content and structure area
Scope and content
Fonds consists of the administrative files created by the Mercer Union gallery during the first twenty years of its existence, including photographs and slides, material printed for the gallery (catalogues, posters, invitations etc.), newspaper reviews, and a small number of video tapes, audio tapes and computer disks. Files remain in the order they were received; errors in filing have not been corrected. Fonds is comprised of the following series: Artist/exhibit files Board of Directors files Programming binders Curatorial files Promotional material
Appraisal, destruction and scheduling
Further accruals are expected
System of arrangement
Conditions of access and use area
Conditions governing access
Conditions governing reproduction
Copyright is held by the creators and their heirs. It is the researcher's responsibility to obtain permission to publish any part of the fonds.
Language of material
Script of material
Language and script notes
Physical characteristics and technical requirements
Allied materials area
Existence and location of originals
Existence and location of copies
Related units of description
Contents of binders have been moved to files, as noted. Photographs have been placed in archival envelopes. Audio tapes, video tapes and computer disks have been removed from files and grouped in the final 2 boxes.
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Description control area
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Level of detail
Dates of creation revision deletion
Originally prepared by Sylvia Lassam, 2003.
Updated and adapted by Nirvana Chainani, 2019.