Drift Station is an artist-run, alternative curatorial platform dedicated to exploring new and experimental forms of curatorial practice. We are a curatorial lab, where exhibitions begin as philosophical and artistic inquiries that cannot be met in the studio. The result is provocative exhibitions that challenge the format of the gallery, including the showing of works and objects not traditionally seen in that context, such as literary and scientific works and by-products.
Working within limited geographic and financial means, we are rethinking how art can be transmitted not transported. We are interested in exhibitions that allow artistic projects from around the world to be seen in locations that might not otherwise have access. This is not limited to the city where an exhibition is held, but also includes creating critical writing, digital archives and documentation that can be viewed online.
Likewise, Drift Station is not a location, but a curatorial activity that sees our primary location in the Midwest of the United States as a challenge rather than a liability. In all cases, we are interested in exploring a non-geographically centered model – this may be a physical space such as a building, or a virtual space such as a website, an email, or a PDF. Any venue can become Drift Station.
As Wikipedia succinctly describes: "A drift station is a term used to describe a temporary or semi-permanent facility built on an ice floe. During the Cold War the Soviet Union and the United States maintained a number of stations in the Arctic Ocean for research and espionage, the latter of which were often little more than quickly constructed shacks."
Because of the constantly-changing location, the postmarks for mail sent from Drift Stations had blank spaces for latitude and longitude that could be written in.