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Transform your Space

August 10th, 2018

A photo of a street full of cars overlaid with a photo of a red shop front

Joanna Johnston, Please. Meet me here. archival print on aluminum dibond, 45”x80” ed. of 3 [artwork available through AGO Art Rental and Sales]

Thinking of buying art for your home or office but don’t know where to start? AGO Art Rental & Sales has the answer. Offering exciting work from Canadian contemporary artists, our team in Art Rental & Sales can you help find the perfect piece.

Below are some of the newest pieces available by Canadian artists.

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Drawing 101

August 10th, 2018

Close up of a hand sketching an apple

Image by the AGO

Drawing sounds simple. All you need is a piece of paper, some charcoal graphite or a soft pencil. Then you need a subject. May we suggest an apple?

If you want to learn how to draw or boost your drawing skills, AGO courses can help. Our courses, on everything from drawing and painting to sculpture, can teach you the essentials of artmaking and perhaps send you on a journey to artistic greatness.

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AGO Bistro turns one

August 10th, 2018

AGO Bistro's Garden Caprese

AGO Bistro’s Garden Caprese. Image by the AGO

Time flies when you’re having fun. It’s been one year since AGO Bistro launched and we’ve been having an artful and delicious time ever since.

Over the last year, AGO Bistro has featured delectable meals and breathtaking cocktails that complemented wonderful AGO exhibitions. Remember the gorgeous Matcha Cake inspired by Yayoi Kusama: Infinity Mirrors? And we can’t forget the delicious cocktails AGO Bistro bartender and mixologist Stephen Gaessler created in honour of Guillermo del Toro: At Home with MonstersGeorgia O’Keeffe and Mystical Landscapes. Look for more fun and scrumptious menu items to complement our upcoming exhibitions.

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A homecoming for Rubens

August 10th, 2018

Rubens' The Massacre of the Innocents, a large oil painting, leans on a cart in our conservation centre

Work shown: Peter Paul Rubens, The Massacre of the Innocents, c. 1610. Oil on Panel. 142 × 183 × 1.9 cm. The Thomson Collection © Art Gallery of Ontario

In the 400 years since its creation, The Massacre of the Innocents has crossed oceans and mountain ranges, survived wars, been lost and found, and set an auction record. But the painting has never been exhibited in a European museum.

That will change on September 26, when this masterpiece in the AGO Collection will be on view in Antwerp at the Rubens House, the artist’s home and studio.

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It’s going to be epoch

August 10th, 2018

A photo of a series of wooden rafts floating in green water

Edward Burtynsky, Saw Mills #1, Lagos, Nigeria, 2016. Inkjet print, 58 ½ x 78 inches. Pigment inkjet print, 58 ½ x 78 inches. Courtesy of the artist and Nicholas Metivier Gallery, Toronto. © Edward Burtynsky, 2017

Spanning six continents and 20 countries, from the concrete seawalls off the coast of China to marble quarries in Italy, from landfills in Nairobi to logging sites in British Columbia, Anthropocene touches down in Toronto this fall.

This incredible investigative journey – captured in stunning large scale photographs, films and augmented reality by Canadian artists Edward Burtynsky, Jennifer Baichwal and Nicholas de Pencier – opens at the AGO on September 28. Timed-entry tickets for Anthropocene go on sale to the public on September 14, 2018. Buy your tickets online at, in person or by phone.

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Anthropocene on screen

August 3rd, 2018

Image of Phosphor Tailings Pond, Near Lakeland, Florida, USA

Edward Burtynsky, Phosphor Tailings Pond #4, Near Lakeland, Florida, USA, 2012. Pigment inkjet print, 148.6 x 198.1 cm. Courtesy of the artist and Nicholas Metivier Gallery, Toronto. © Edward Burtynsky, 2017.

Did you know an international group of scientists believe that we’re in a new geological epoch, called Anthropocene, due to the impact humans have had on the planet?

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(Art) Cart Blanche

August 2nd, 2018

Child plays with puzzle at AGO Art Cart

Image by the AGO

Ever been inspired to create art while visiting the AGO? Us too! Our roving Art Cart family activity centres are chock-full of art-making fun for everyone, especially if you’ve got a mini-Matisse or pint-sized Picasso in your life.

Right now, our Art Carts offer activities inspired by two extraordinary exhibitions – TunirrusiangitKenojuak Ashevak and Tim Pitsiulak, on view until August 12 (Don’t miss it!) and Nyle Miigizi Johnston’s Connecting With Our First Family, on view until September 30. Both exhibitions are brimming with life-like and fantastic images of animals, sure to inspire budding artists.

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Last chance to see Tunirrusiangit!

August 2nd, 2018

A display of merchandise featuring works from Tunirrusiangit

Image by the AGO.

Have you seen our major exhibition Tunirrusiangit: Kenojuak Ashevak and Tim Pitsiulak yet? Closing Sunday, August 12, this remarkable exhibition brings together the superb prints and drawings of two generations of incredible Inuit artists. Don’t miss the exhibition that the Toronto Star called a “star-making display of Inuit art.”

Co-curated by a team of Inuit artists, who wove poetry, storytelling and video through the exhibition, Tunirrusiangit honours the legacy of Ashevak and Pitsiulak with a contemporary lens. It’s also the biggest exhibition of Inuit art ever at the AGO and the first time Inuit art has been exhibited in the Sam & Ayala Zacks Pavilion – the AGO’s largest gallery space.

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Retro AGO: Painting in the park

August 2nd, 2018

A black and white image of Arthur Lismer conducting a children's outdoor sketching class in Grange Park in 1934

Arthur Lismer conducting a children’s outdoor sketching class in Grange Park in 1934. Photo courtesy of the AGO.

Does the name Arthur Lismer ring a bell? Best known as an artist and a founder of the Group of Seven, Arthur Lismer has another important connection to the AGO – and Grange Park, the wonderful green space behind the AGO. A respected art educator, and the former principal of what is now the Nova Scotia College of Art and Design (NSCAD) in Halifax, Lismer was invited to establish an art school at the AGO in 1928 – an opportunity he gladly accepted as it allowed him to explore new approaches in art education and to spread the ideals of a new “Canadian” art.

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To the lighthouse

August 2nd, 2018

Artist Leslie Reid with her painting Cape Pine: The Station

Artwork: Leslie Reid, Cape Pine: The Station, 2011. Oil on canvas. Purchase with assistance from the Estate of Penelope Glasser and the Dr. Michael Braudo Canadian Contemporary Art Fund, 2018. Image by the AGO.

On the southeastern-most tip of Newfoundland, there is a lighthouse on a cliff. When Canadian artist Leslie Reid first arrived at Cape Pine in 2008 for a month-long artist residency, the fog was so thick she couldn’t even see the lighthouse. But the fog and the lighthouse would both inspire her work.

Recently acquired by the AGO and on view now in the new J.S. McLean Centre for Indigenous & Canadian Art, Cape Pine: The Station is one in a series of three large paintings named after this remote place. We sat down with the artist to learn more about this mesmerizing work, and the tragic story behind the evocative setting:

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