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Archive: May, 2019

Sculpting the invisible

May 27th, 2019

a sculpture created using women's boots, and denim shorts sits atop a step ladder.
Valérie Blass, Ceux qui ne demandent rien, 2019, stool, acrylic gesso, paint, fiberglass and brick. Courtesy of the artist and Catriona Jeffries, Vancouver.

Witty, subversive, dark, cheeky – these are just a few of the words commonly used to describe the sculptural works of Montreal artist and 2017 Gershon Iskowitz Prize-winner Valérie Blass. In her new exhibition, on view now on Level 4 of the Vivian & David Campbell Centre for Contemporary Art, Blass goes one step further, sparking viewers’ imaginations with a series of works that use thrift store clothing, found objects and repeating visual motifs. Valérie Blass: Le parlement des invisibles is on view now until December 1. 

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Life behind the lens

May 27th, 2019

Ming Smith. Alvin Ailey Revelation, Harlem, NY, printed c. 1975. Gelatin silver print, Overall: 40.6 × 50.8 cm. Purchase, with funds generously donated by the Photography Curatorial Committee, 2018.  2018/31 © Ming Smith

The Scotiabank CONTACT Photography Festival may be winding down, but many of the exhibitions – including the AGO’s Photography, Women in Focus: 1920s–1940s – continue after the month ends. Before we say goodbye to the Festival, the AGO is hosting an exciting talk on May 29 with two Toronto luminaries June Clark and Suzy Lake, along with African-American artist Ming Smith.

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Your summer of inspiration

May 27th, 2019

Image by the AGO.

Spring showers have brought us flowers, and the heat of summer is almost upon us. That means a whole new line-up of adult, youth and children’s courses at the AGO. With life-drawing, painting, photography and more, there is something for every age group and every art-making style. This could be your summer of inspiration – take the plunge!

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Seeing stars with Vija Celmins

May 27th, 2019

White dots on a black backdrop.
Vija Celmins, Night Sky #12, 1995 – 1996. Oil on canvas mounted on panel, 78.70 x 96.52 x 3.17 cm. Carnegie Museum of Art, Pittsburgh: The Henry L. Hillman Fund, 1996.37. © Vija Celmins

Have you seen our exhibition Vija Celmins: To Fix the Image in Memory? On view now, it showcases the remarkably intricate works of artist Vija Celmins. And if you cannot get enough of gazing at the stars and ocean waves in her remarkable work in the exhibition, we present an additional installation of eight newly acquired prints by the globally acclaimed artist that are now part of the AGO Collection.

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Love for @Hatecopy

May 17th, 2019

Photo by Joanne Ratajczak.

You might have come across Maria Qamar’s celebrated Instagram feed @Hatecopy during your daily scroll. Her pop-art style and sharp sense of humour that playfully pokes fun at South Asian stereotypes has earned her over 160k followers. Born in Pakistan and raised in Mississauga, Qamar’s work deals with interactions between the South Asian diaspora, feminism, romance, revenge, drama, tradition and confronting the patriarchy. She has shown her work in galleries internationally, published a book Trust No Aunty and can count Mindy Kaling among her many fans. On May 25, as part of AGO All Hours, she’ll take the stage in Walker Court at 4 pm to give us her take on art, community and satire.

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Memoirs of a globetrotting photographer

May 17th, 2019

A man holds a large wooden harpoon with a pointed barb above his head inside his home.
Michael Mitchell. Philip Hakuluk, Rankin Inlet, Feb. 1986 (with harpoon), 1986. Gelatin-silver print, Overall (sheet): 27.8 x 35.5 cm. Purchase with assistance of The McLean Foundation, 1991. 91/43 ©Michael Mitchell

He’s an archeologist, author and photographer with works in collections throughout North America and Europe. He’s a daring freelancer who has spent his career travelling the globe documenting the stories of criminals, revolutionaries, Olympians and more. He’s Michael Mitchell, and as part of the annual Scotiabank CONTACT Photography Festival, he’s coming to the AGO on May 30 to launch  Final Fire, a memoir of his adventures as a globetrotting “cowboy with a camera and a keyboard”.

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