Visual Arts News from the Vancouver Art Gallery Library August 30, 2012


New public art installations function as an understated but alarming urban intervention. “At the entrance to the Canada Line City Centre Station, near the southwest corner of Georgia and Granville streets, Mark Soo’s Cat & Mouse plays with different combinations of word pairings and fonts. By overlapping familiarly connected words, Soo creates an effect that is somewhere between concrete poetry, commercial signage, and urban babble…Halfway down the stairs at the same Canada Line station, look for Alison Fu’s Date Stamp, eight colour photos that also use layering as a strategy.” Georgia Straight, August 28, 2012

Cameron Kerr’s big sculptures arrive at Queen Elizabeth Theatre plaza. “Five new marble and granite sculptures by Campbell River artist Cameron Kerr arrive at the Queen Elizabeth Theatre plaza, August 30.” Georgia Straight, August 29, 2012


Arts in Action: peace & postcards. “The Reach had great success with the first component of the 2012 Arts Action Heritage Project related to Bearing Witness, an exhibition organized and circulated by the Vancouver Art Gallery, shown at The Reach from April 12 to June 10. Following a tour of the show, community members created their own “postcards from the edge” with images and words, inspired by the exhibition or their own experiences. Postcards to Peacemaking is the second stage of The Reach 2012 Arts in Action Project, which brings people together to learn how art contributes to social action.” Abbotsford Times, August 30, 2012


City art lover donates Inuit collection to WAG. The Stafford Collection of Inuit Sculpture opened Saturday and will be on view until sometime in January. The works were acquired during the past 20 years by retired Winnipeg stockbroker Bob Stafford, with help from his wife Marlene.” Winnipeg Free Press, August 27, 2012


Jamelie Hassan at MOCCA: Two worlds, one voice. “At the entrance to “At the Far Edge of Words,” the 30-plus year survey of the work of Jamelie Hassan at the Museum of Contemporary Canadian Art, a crisp Arabic character glows in chilly blue-white neon against a backdrop of glossy black tile. It’s not inviting, and maybe that’s the point.”” Toronto Star, August 30, 2012


Multiple visions. “Carleton University Art Gallery, the Ottawa Art Gallery and the Ottawa School of Art have exhibitions that reflect on arts education in the city, and they are sharply different reflections. At Carleton, Cara Tierney has a series of large and carefully staged photographs that are, but are not, self-portraits. At the Ottawa Art Gallery, Guillermo Trejo has a small show with a big punch. At the Ottawa School of Art the instructors have a group exhibition that is uneven but not without highlights.” Ottawa Citizen, August 30, 2012


The new face of Montreal street art. ‘The beauty in exposed, graffiti-covered brick walls and buildings in this city can so often get lost — or at least overwhelmed — by commercial chaos and the inattention that manifests from a regular routine. Un portrait Montréalais is an independent pet project of photographer Barry Russell, who created and installed the large-scale pieces on a building near you.’ Montreal Gazette, August 25, 2012

Los Angeles

Broad Foundation makes payment to MOCA after controversial delay “The Broad Foundation has made a $1.5-million payment to L.A.’s Museum of Contemporary Art, bringing it out of arrears on Eli Broad’s pledge to provide $3 million a year for MOCA’s exhibitions through 2013.” Los Angeles Times, August 29, 2012

Metal Casting From Leonardo Da Vinci Sculpture Unveiled “A metal casting of a 504-year-old Leonardo da Vinci beeswax sculpture was unveiled to the world in a ceremony on Monday in Los Angeles. Horse and Rider is the only known three-dimensional piece of art created by Leonardo to still exist.” Yahoo! News, August 29, 2012

New York

Canadian photographer Chris Buck plays a game of high-profile hide-and-seek. “While the Canadian-born Buck shoots celebrities for the glossy pages of GQ and Esquire, his new project Presence puts A-listers front and centre by hiding them away. Celebrated U.S. photographer Cindy Sherman once told Buck, “The whole point of having your portrait taken is to promote your commodity — your face — and I love how this series is the exact opposite of that.”” National Post, August 27, 2012


What Happens When You Clean 400 Years Of Dust And Dirt Off A Tapestry? “The cleaning of an Elizabethan tapestry map has revealed what may be the earliest depiction of the Rollright Stones, a series of Neolithic and Bronze Age megaliths in the English Midlands.” The Art Newspaper, August 30, 2012


Moving Away From Starchitecture At The Venice Biennale “A divide is opening up – generationally, economically and philosophically. The starchitects … are still here, but the appetite for celebrations of individual genius, and isolated, beautifully crafted buildings, seems to be dissipating. To co-opt the language of the Occupy movement, the big names are starting to look like architecture’s 1%.” The Guardian (UK), August 29, 2012


Taras Polataiko’s Sleeping Beauty Redux in Kiev: Is a kiss just a kiss? “As far as anyone knows, Prince Charming didn’t have to submit to a test for oral herpes before planting a kiss on Sleeping Beauty. Then again, Sleeping Beauty, Grimm Fairy Tales version, wasn’t lazing about in a public building in a crumbling post-Soviet capital, her lips fair game for anyone — male, female or any combination of the two — to partake of. Given that this is just the circumstance Taras Polataiko, 45, a Canadian artist who teaches at University of Lethbridge, has created in the National Art Museum in Kiev, Ukraine, a little practical prudence is warranted.” Toronto Star, August 30, 2012


Fool’s gold and gems “For obvious reasons, fakers do not sign their work. Within the small world of museum specialists, the idea that some splendid Renaissance treasures were later creations was not new. Until the discovery of the Vasters drawings, however, there was no documentary proof. And few had imagined that so many coveted Renaissance jewels and objects were actually made in the 19th century. A lot – and the discoveries keep on coming.” The Wall Street Journal, August 29, 2012

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