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5 in 35: lunch edition

June 17th, 2019

Claes Oldenburg, Ice Cream Soda with Cookie, 1963. Alkyd paint on plaster and glass, stainless steel, chinaware, paper, painted tray, 29.2 x 34.9 x 26 cm. Gift of the Sydney Lawrence Wax Family Trust, 2011. © Claes Oldenburg 2011/272

Our new admission model is making art-going easier than ever before. With a full year of art for only $35 for AGO Annual Pass holders, and free admission for AGO Members and visitors 25 and under, there’s always a reason to visit – even if it’s just for 35 minutes. Join us on your next lunch hour for a quick and relaxing art break.

Need some inspiration? We’ve gathered some of our favourite food-themed works from the AGO Collection for you to savour during your visit.

Ice Cream Soda with Cookie

A leading voice in the Pop Art movement of the 1960s, Claus Oldenburg’s Ice Cream Soda with Cookie (shown above) showcases both his skill and his biting wit. The surface of the sculpture is painted with enamel with such refined detail that it looks real (and good) enough to eat. But the joke is on us, because the piece remains an inedible sculpture constructed out of metal, plastic and glass. We hope this play on real vs. representation and consumerism vs. art brings a smile to your face. It’s in the Philip Lind Gallery, Gallery 131 on Level 1.

Still Life with Drinking Glass, Fruit and Roses

Jan Davidsz. de Heem, Still Life with Drinking Glass, Fruit and Roses, c. 1632-1634. Oil on wood, 37.8 x 37.5 cm. Bequest of Gerald R. Larkin, 1961. © Art Gallery of Ontario 60/68

Active in the mid-1600s, Jan Davidsz. de Heem was a Dutch baroque painter famous for his lush still life paintings of dinner tables and florals. Take a close look at the opulent scene he’s laid out for us in this work – especially the perfectly highlighted citrus peel. On display on Level 1 in the E.R. Wood Gallery (Gallery 121 of the Tanenbaum Centre for European Art), this piece is sure to help you work up an appetite.

Jumping the Boa

Winsom, Jumping the Boa (detail), 2019, Installation view © Winsom. Photo: Art Gallery of Ontario

The spiritually charged works of Canadian-Maroon artist Winsom envelope all the senses. On view on Level 2 in the J.S. McLean Centre for Indigenous & Canadian Art (the Samuel & Esther Sarick Gallery, Gallery 239), Jumping the Boa features photography, painting and sculpture. For Winsom, the afterlife is the same as this world, but everything is upside-down. She chose to represent this belief with a sculpture of a banquet table on the ceiling.

Plate: The Justice of Trajan, with unidentified coat-of-arms, c. 1530–1535

Nicola da Urbino, Plate: the justice of trajan,with unidentified coat-of-arms, c. 1530-1535. Tin-glazed earthenware, diameter: 4cm. The Thomson Collection at the Art Gallery of Ontario. AGOID.29318

Did you know the AGO has a collection of early European plates, glasses, goblets, silverware and other serving dishes? This particular plate shows Trajan, a Roman emperor, stopping his preparations for war in order to dispense imperial justice. You can eat up this plate, and many others, in Gallery 114 of the Thomson Collection of European Art on Level 1.


James Wilson Morrice, Lunch, c. 1901. Oil on Wood, 15.4 x 12.6. The Thompson Collection at the Art Gallery of Ontario. AGOID.103770

This work, by Canadian artist James Wilson Morrice, depicts a bright, airy, mid-day meal enjoyed by a family in a Parisian café. New to the time period, such cafés were staffed by cooks formerly employed by the French aristocracy in their homes. Painted with the loose brushstrokes characteristic of the Impressionists, you can enjoy the atmospheric feel and cheeky details of this work in Gallery 220 of the Thomson Collection of Canadian Art on Level 2.

Admission to the AGO Collection and all special exhibitions is always free for AGO Members, AGO Annual Pass holders and visitors 25 and under. For more information, please visit the website.

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