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A monumental response

October 5th, 2018

Two sculpture works by Rebecca Belmore - Tower and tarpaulin

Rebecca Belmore, Tower, 2018 (detail) and tarpaulin (2018). Installed at the Art Gallery of Ontario © Rebecca Belmore

Rebecca Belmore: Facing the Monumental is a big show – in multiple ways. On view until October 21, the exhibition features large-scale works that engage with big issues – including water and land rights, women’s lives, violence against Indigenous people and the role of the artist in contemporary life. The exhibition takes up a lot of space too – Belmore’s work fills the entire Level 5 of the AGO’s contemporary tower and extends throughout the AGO, including in Galleria Italia. It stretches to Queen and Bay Street, where a new video work appears on the Media Art Wall of TD Bank.

The response from art critics and the public has been big too. If you haven’t visited this stunning exhibition yet, hear from the experts on why you should see it before it’s too late.

Even before the exhibition opened, there was buzz. In June, Leanne Betasamosake Simpson described in Canadian Art a conversation with Rebecca Belmore and our Curator of Indigenous Art, Wanda Nanibush. She praised Belmore for challenging “me to respond to the world in an unapologetic, intelligent way.”

Across the pond, British art magazine, Apollo said, “the work of Rebecca Belmore demands to be heard.” And from the Big Apple, The New York Times called the exhibition “striking and provocative.”

Closer to home, the show generated much praise: “To call Rebecca Belmore’s work ‘powerful,’ as it often is, is to make the understatement of this century,” the Toronto Star said. “Rebecca Belmore’s work is monumental, yes, but poetic too.” NOW magazine said it was a must-see art show for summer.

The Globe and Mail called Belmore’s work “playful and defiant,” highlighting the exhibition’s focus on sound and Belmore’s ongoing mission to “creating beauty to address the ugly.”

These are just a few of the amazing responses we’ve seen from media. But what are visitors saying? Here are a few of our favourite visitor responses from Instagram. (See more by following the hashtag #BelmoreAGO)

Rebecca Belmore: Facing the Monumental is organized by the Art Gallery of Ontario and is free with General Admission.

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