Rotunda Gallery


The gallery 

The Rotunda Gallery is an open-concept space located on the ground floor at Kitchener city hall. It is open 7 a.m. - 9 p.m. Monday to Friday and 9 a.m. - 9 p.m. weekends and holidays.

The gallery's hanging wall has a 48 foot picture rail and 48 inches of vertical hanging space and features monthly exhibits of the work of regional artists. It is ideal for displaying two-dimensional artwork, but cannot accommodate sculpture in the round.

Please note that the gallery is currently closed as part of City Hall and City facilities closures in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. For full details, visit the City of Kitchener's COVID-19 updates page. To view the work of our July artist, Lauren Prousky, see the photo gallery below.

2020 Rotunda Gallery exhibition schedule:

  • December 2019 - Clara Laratta
  • January - Sean Chapell
  • February - Yang Yang Pan
  • March - Leah Denbok, Leah's exhibition was cut short due to closures to help slow the spread of COVID 19. If you didn't get a chance to see it, you can watch a virtual tour of her opening and see her photographs with a powerful social message in support of local organizations servicing our vulnerable residents. 
  • April - Fariba Kalantari, postponed till 2021
  • May - cancelled 
  • June - CAFKA, postponed till 2021
  • July - Lauren Prousky, online exhibition. Explore the photo gallery below to see Lauren's exhibit "Shapes I'll Never Be".
    Artist biography

    Lauren is a multidisciplinary artist, writer and curator from Toronto, currently based in Kitchener-Waterloo. She earned a BFA in studio art and English from Concordia University and an MFA from the University of Waterloo. Lauren’s practice is comprised of material experiments of body and self-image, trying to paint distance and research, sculptures and fiber works exploring the aesthetics of cultural Judaism. She recently completed a contract as the assistant curator at Gallery Stratford and is currently the administrator for Art$Pay and Local Art for Local Walls, Waterloo Region (LAF). 

    Exhibition information and Artist Statement

    Lauren describes her virtual exhibition below:

    September 2019 : a project statement 

    "“Shapes I’ll Never Be” satirizes capitalist self-improvement culture that pushes the narrative of achieving a total self-transformation through laxatives, wellness trends and good camera angles. Under the umbrella of “Shapes I’ll Never Be”, the works in the show take on a corporeal tone by asking the viewer to consider shapes and objects as possible bodies. Consequently, looking at the art under this framework also animates the materials by asking the viewers to see each piece as a character ensemble rather than merely objects. This creates a quirky anthropomorphism that speaks to the futility of ever feeling OK about yourself under a system designed to make you feel the opposite.

    June 2020 : an addendum and a poem (but also part of a project statement. Don’t get it twisted).

    Obviously, things are different.

    a)    City Hall is closed. Virtual exhibition offered and accepted. Exhibitions installed and photographed in my backyard from 3pm-7pm on June 16th.

    b)    Bringing the work into the domestic sphere further enforces a feminist angle.  These narratives are usually pushed on women and now I quite literally cannot escape the home (a feminine space, obvs).

    c)    I’ve read tons of articles about people feeling less in control of eating disorders and getting stuck in cycles of self-hatred during quarantine. Any dysmorphic tendencies I thought I had conquered have returned full force. I changed my clothes 3 times just to bike to a friend’s apartment to return a tripod. When I got there, I caught my reflection in her building’s glass siding and thought I looked nicely slim-thicc. This was cool but also sad.  

    d)    Covid, combined with large scale social upheaval and reckoning, has made as all revaluate what we are, what we aren’t, and who we want to be and if it hasn’t, I hope you are ok.

    e)    Having time can be good and bad and I spent a lot of time wishing for more time before March 17 and a lot of time after March 17 wishing for more time.

    f)      Turns out there will never be enough time.

    g)    Turns out I’m lovely in a few ways but days are too short.

    h)    Turns out so little actually matters and people still die and people still suffer and I suffer a small amount sometimes and other people suffer more.

    i)      Turns out Shapes I’ll Never Be are shapes that never care so please donate whatever you can to black trans people and be a good example and defund the police.

    j)      Turns out Shapes I’ll Never Be is a promise

    k)    Turns out Shapes I’ll Never Be again are shapes that never listen."

  • August  - Sharon Vanstarkenburg, postponed till 2021
  • September - Natalie McDonald
  • October - Kat Hernden
  • November - Steven Restagno
  • December - 2020 Artist in Residence

Exhibition program

The exhibition program at the Rotunda Gallery supports professional contemporary practice in the visual arts. A call for exhibition proposals is posted annually on the Calls for artist proposals page.  To promote the local development of visual arts, artists from Waterloo region are given preference, but artists from other Ontario localities may apply. Proposals are selected by a jury of arts professionals, and are reviewed for quality of artistic work and professional credentials.

Each May, the Rotunda Gallery celebrates the creative expression of our local youth through an exhibition of their art work. 

Every second year the gallery features the work of Contemporary Art Forum Kitchener + Area (CAFKA).

For more information, please contact us at 519-741-2200 ext. 7912.

Virtual Exhibition featuring Lauren Prousky

Photo Gallery: Rotunda Gallery - July - Lauren Prousky will appear here on the public site.

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