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Archive: July, 2018

Receiving ‘their gifts’

July 13th, 2018

Curator Laakkuluk Williamson Bathory inside Tunirrusiangit

Laakkuluk Williamson Bathory inside Tunirrusiangit, Image by the AGO.

Tunirrusiangit means “the gifts they gave” in Inuktitut, and AGO visitors are invited to enjoy the gifts of Kenojuak Ashevak and her nephew Timootee (Tim) Pitsiulak with the exhibition Tunirrusiangit: Kenojuak Ashevak and Tim Pitsiulak. This major retrospective on now in the Sam & Ayala Zacks Pavilion is the first time an AGO exhibition has been co-curated by four Inuit artists.

We’ve told you how the exhibition helped connect co-curator Jocelyn Piirainen to her roots and how meaningful it was for co-curator Koomuatuk (Kuzy) Curley to work with a team of Inuit from the North and the South. This week we’re speaking with co-curator Laakkuluk Williamson Bathory, an artist and spoken word poet, on how shaping this exhibition deepened her connection to Ashevak and Pitsiulak.

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To the rescue

July 13th, 2018

 Julia Campbell-Such, Leonie Muller and Valerie Moscato with New York Apartment View – Manhattan by Pegi Nicol MacLeod, c. 1940. Image by the AGO.

(L-R) Julia Campbell-Such, Leonie Muller and Valerie Moscato with New York Apartment View – Manhattan by Pegi Nicol MacLeod, c. 1940. Image by the AGO.

Every summer, the team in our Michael & Sonja Koerner Centre for Conservation works with student interns who gain hands-on experience while helping keep the AGO Collection in tip-top shape.

Meet this year’s three conservation interns: Valerie Moscato, in her final year at Queen’s University, finishing a Master of Art Conservation, specializing in paintings; Julia Campbell-Such, who will graduate this year from Queen’s Master of Art Conservation program, with a focus on conservation of objects; and Leonie Muller, who is completing a Master of Arts at the Stuttgart State Academy of Art and Design in paper conservation.

We think conservators are like superheroes of the art world – working to restore and protect great art. So we’ve given our conservation interns each a superhero name to reflect the fascinating work they’re doing.

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Have an art-tastic summer!

July 13th, 2018

An enthusiastic camper shows off her work.  Image by the AGO.

Do you know a young artist looking for an awesome way to spend the summer? At AGO Summer Art Camps, our campers create amazing art projects.

In our one- and two-week summer camps, self-expression and fun are key as young artists discover and play while exploring the AGO’s galleries. Every Friday, we hold an exhibition of campers’ artistic creations, and parents, caregivers, friends and family are invited to view these young artists’ work.

And from what we’ve seen, we’ve got some very talented campers. Check out some of the art they’ve created so far this summer:

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A monument to the dispossessed

July 13th, 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 opened just last week at the AGO and the exhibition is getting rave reviews from visitors and the press. Heralded as “striking and provocative” by The New York Times, Canadian Art says, “To call Rebecca Belmore’s work ‘powerful,’ as it often is, is to make the understatement of this century.” The Toronto Star says, “Rebecca Belmore’s work is monumental, yes, but poetic too.”

A highlight of the exhibition is a pair of new works, Tower and tarpaulin, installed side by side. The works stem, Belmore writes in the exhibition catalogue, from recent experiences in Vancouver, where she was struck by the opposing forces of rapid condo development and homelessness.

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Pissarro: a painter for the people

July 13th, 2018

Pisarro's Le pont Boieldieu à Rouen, a painting of a bridge over a river

Camille Pissarro. Pont Boieldieu in Rouen, Rainy Weather, 1896. Oil on canvas, 73.6 × 91.4 cm. Gift of Reuben Wells Leonard Estate, 1937. © Art Gallery of Ontario

The word Impressionism might bring to mind scenes of water lilies or starry nights. But French painter Camille Pissarro – born 188 years ago this week – was known for something more than dreamy natural landscapes.

Heralded by Paul Cézanne and Paul Gauguin as the father of Impressionism, Pissarro’s paintings often depict everyday people at work, in cities or fields, in crowds or up-close. To celebrate Pissarro’s birthday, we’re taking a close look at his work Pont Boieldieu in Rouen, Rainy Weather.

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This Party Loves You

July 6th, 2018

Three people lifting a giant quilt with many different designs

Image by the AGO.

Exams are finished. Classes are done. AGO Youth Council is celebrating summer with their annual summer party, now in its fourth year. This Party Loves You, a free all-ages art party, will be held July 14 from 8 – 11 pm.

Programmed by the AGO Youth Council, the party features local musicians and rappers Just John, Eyeda Sophia and Tyriqueordie, as well as DJ GG, snacks and refreshments and artmaking – what more could you want? How about a giant art installation radiating good vibes? We’ve got that too!

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Postcards to Käthe Kollwitz

July 6th, 2018

Sketch in pencil inspired by a Kollwitz drawing.

Image by the AGO.

Among the 50-plus prints, drawings and sculptures in our Käthe Kollwitz: Art and Life exhibition, our visitors found something else – inspiration.

Käthe Kollwitz, one of Germany’s most significant modern artists, is perhaps best known for prints and drawings inspired by her experiences of motherhood, life in working class Berlin and the trauma of living through two world wars. Her work explores the human cost in this period of great upheaval.

Our exhibition, on now on Level 1, invites visitors of all ages to take a blank card and leave a drawing or message inspired by Kollwitz’s art. “The activity can help visitors create their own personal experiences with the art. Everyone looks at art differently,” says AGO Assistant Interpretive Planner Laura Robb, who designed the Kollwitz response station. “The act of putting a pencil on a paper is one that is very conscious and deliberate. When you can have that kind of experience in an exhibition, the exhibition’s messages and key points tend to linger with people. The visitors’ responses show how Kollwitz’s art still resonates today.”

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Top Summer Reads

July 6th, 2018

Lyall's Interesting story, A painting of two children reading a book

Laura Muntz Lyall, Interesting Story, 1898. Oil on canvas, 81.3 x 100.3 cm. Gift of the Government of the Province of Ontario, 1972. © 2018 Art Gallery of Ontario.

Summer is officially here, and there’s no better season to relax and enjoy a new book. And if you’re not sure what to read next, we’ve got you covered with this list of our favourite art-related reads from shopAGO.

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An urban Inuk connects with her roots

July 6th, 2018

Co-Curator Jocelyn Piirainen inside Tunirrusiangit

Jocelyn Piirainen inside Tunirrusiangit, Image by the AGO.

Can art deepen a connection to one’s roots? Artist and curator Jocelyn Piirainen says yes.

Our major exhibition, Tunirrusiangit: Kenojuak Ashevak and Tim Pitsiulak, highlights the creative legacy of these two artists while also marking some important firsts: it’s not only the first time Inuit art has been showcased in the museum’s largest gallery space, the Sam & Ayala Zacks Pavilion, but it’s also the first time an AGO exhibition has been co-curated by four Inuit artists.

Co-curator Jocelyn Piirainen describes herself as an urban Inuk, living and working in the South (Ottawa) as a curator, filmmaker and photographer. We spoke to Jocelyn about her experience organizing the exhibition, curating collaboratively and learning more Inuktitut.

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A monumental opening

July 6th, 2018

Rebecca Belmore's artist (no. 2), a photo of a man in orange clothes in front of an orange wall

Rebecca Belmore, artist (No. 2), 2014. Photograph, 111.4 x 198.1 cm. Courtesy of the artist © Rebecca Belmore.

Join us on Wednesday, July 11 at 6 p.m. in Walker Court, as we honour the opening of Rebecca Belmore’s largest-ever solo exhibition. Featuring remarks by both the artist and the exhibition curator, Wanda Nanibush, the AGO’s Curator of Indigenous Art, visitors will be treated to a stirring performance by Cree cellist and composer Cris Derksen

Filling Level 5 of the AGO’s Vivian and David Campbell Centre for Contemporary Art, Rebecca Belmore: Facing the Monumental extends through a series of satellite installations into the AGO’s Galleria Italia, Joey & Toby Tanenbaum Atrium, and the newly reopened J.S. McLean Centre for Indigenous & Canadian Art, as well as at the intersection of Queen and Bay streets in downtown Toronto on the TD Bank media art wall.

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