Best Art Gallery St. Louis 2012 - Good Citizen Gallery
2247 Gravois Ave.
St. Louis, MO 63104
Offbeat yet steadfast, this engaging and inventive gallery near the intersection of Gravois and Jefferson avenues never fails to surprise. Walk in one month and see a collection of what look like turn-of-the-century photographs but are actually contemporary shots created from handmade pinhole cameras (Pinholio); next month discover a labyrinth of thrift-store items, assembled into a precarious sculptural installation, which over the exhibit's course will proceed to disappear (Mike Calway-Fagan's The Indeterminate Length). Under the direction of Tennessee transplant Andrew James, Good Citizen's programming has the organic feel of a personally expressive effort, though the work on view is never James' own. It's his vision that carries through and attracts artists with a similar mind for experimentation, inquisitiveness, formal expertise — and a healthy dose of humor. Sired by a Creep, organized by the North Carolina collective Team Lump, presented a winking, sad-sack approach to conceptualism, and a substantial, carefully installed and utterly untrivial body of work. At the opposite pole, Jamie Kreher's Equivalents felt perfectly of a piece inviting a rigorous and reflective investigation of the experimental photographer's craft. National and local, light and serious, Good Citizen makes good on its quirky approach time and time again.