Visual Arts News from the Vancouver Art Gallery Library, March 28, 2013

Vancouver

Creator of Vancouver’s steel crab sculpture remembered. “The crab rises from a pool, pincers raised overhead, a magnificent six-metre-tall sculpture rendered in stainless steel. For 45 years, the gleaming decapod crustacean has guarded the entrance to what is now the H.R. MacMillan Space Centre in a park on the Vancouver waterfront. Designed by George Norris, who has died at 84, the crab is a work of public art that has won the approval of the public as well as that of art critics.” Globe & Mail, March 27, 2013

Richmond, B.C.

Museum expansion proposed. “Richmond is the latest city in Metro Vancouver to push forward with cultural centre expansions – and this one is a “destination museum” with a $59-million price tag. The second and recommended option, the so-called destination museum, would cost $59 million. At 75,000 square feet, the museum would attract travelling exhibits, pull in more revenue and could break even within five years and would be dramatically larger than the current 4,000 square feet. Surrey has also approved the Surrey Museum’s expansion.” Vancouver Sun, March 28, 2013

Edmonton

Visual arts preview: A different view of landscape art.” Skilfully, sassily, Nathan Birch patrols the border between decorative commercial art and its mythical antithesis, “idea-based” conceptual work. His nearly photorealistic acrylic landscape paintings — up now at Douglas Udell Gallery in a show called Waters — are of powerfully pretty, unspoiled stretches of Vancouver Island, often less than half an hour away from his studio home in Campbell River.” Edmonton Journal, March 27, 2013

Winnipeg

Look again. “Though he’s used photographs in his work for over 40 years, Garry Neill Kennedy isn’t a much of photographer himself. Of the 700 or so images blanketing the walls of his career-spanning exhibition at Platform Centre, the Governor General’s Award-winning conceptual artist and painter took only a fraction himself, and even these — expressionless snapshots of street signs and subway posters — aren’t much to look at.” Winnipeg Free Press, March 28, 2013

Toronto

Exhibit of baseball bat art sure to be a hit. “At first it was difficult for C.R. Fieldhouse to see his painstakingly handcrafted baseball bats tampered with by other hands. But when Fieldhouse saw the bats he’d made, already works of art, turned into the creative expressions of 30 artists, he was blown away.” Toronto Star, March 28, 2013

Ottawa

Big Beat: The mother as artist. “For the third time in three years I’m in an Ottawa gallery looking at paintings that mothers have made of their children. Each mother has her own style and technique, yet as I look at Lorena Ziraldo’s new paintings of her teenaged son I all at once see the quiet subtext that binds the works of all three artists.” Ottawa Citizen, March 27, 2013

What Artists & Art Orgs Need to Know About the 2013 Federal Budget. “Though it debuted with much fanfare, there seemed at first to be little news for artists and the art sector in the 2013 federal budget released last Thursday in Ottawa. But there are still big changes ahead worth noting. Here’s an overview.” Canadian Art, March 27, 2013

Canadian arts advocates see little of note in 2013 federal budget. “Finance minister Jim Flaherty did not mention the arts in his budget speech, delivered in the House of Commons today (March 21). Flaherty mainly detailed the government’s plans to strengthen the country’s financial position during tough economic times. However, the budget documents do outline measures related to the arts, including a proposed change to part of the Canada Cultural Investment Fund.” Georgia Straight, March 21, 2013

Montreal

Documenting collections saves estate headaches. While the value of a collection may seem immense to those who spent a lifetime lovingly building up the treasure trove, realizing its true monetary value will either take effort by the collector while living or may force his or her beneficiaries to scramble when trying to liquidate the items as part of an estate. According to Tania Poggione, director of the Montreal office of Heffel Gallery Ltd., a national fine-art auction house, “having a proper inventory of the works is a key first step to being able to evaluate a collection’s fair market value.” Montreal Gazette, March 25, 2013

St. John’s, Nfld.

Architect changed Newfoundland’s cityscape. “Charles Cullum trained in the International Style, with its Bauhaus and New Brutalism influences of wondrous poured concrete forms, but as a practising architect he was open-minded to developments and ideas. This adaptability fuelled an enormous range of projects, including libraries, churches, prisons and catamarans, completed from Come By Chance to Macau.” Globe & Mail, March 25, 2013

Portland

Finally, the Bowl Gets Its Due The most commonplace of household objects stars in a new exhibition. New York Times, March 28, 2013

San Francisco

San Francisco’s Fine Arts Museums Finally Settle On Director “The Fine Arts Museums of San Francisco have named Colin Bailey as their new director. Bailey, who most recently served as the deputy director and chief curator at the Frick Collection in New York, will head the De Young Museum and the Legion of Honor in San Francisco.” Los Angeles Times, March 27, 2013

Garry Winogrand: Rolls of a Lifetime “Garry Winogrand’s first retrospective in 25 years unites over 300 photographs culled from thousands of unmarked contact sheets.” ARTnews, March 27, 2013

You Look Like Such a Tourist: ’80s and ’90s Edition. During the 20-year break Roger Minick took from documenting sightseers around the United States from the early ’80s to 2000, he noticed crowds and motor-homes increased in size, cellphones and cameras became ubiquitous, and more grandparents and foreign tourists popped up. “But, like two decades earlier, sightseers were still showing up at the overlooks wearing vivid colors and looking into my camera with the same curious mix of awe and wariness.” Slate Magazine, March 27, 2013

Detroit

New Director For Detroit Museum of Contemporary Art The “upstart venue” hires a fundraiser and manager because “We want to be really solid, and we want to be here forever.” Detroit Free Press, March 26, 2013

Philadelphia

Barnes Foundation Restores Greek Vessel and Its Founder’s Room 17 “At the Barnes Foundation in Philadelphia conservators are piecing together a Greek antiquity that was a centerpiece of one of Albert C. Barnes’s meticulously arranged galleries.” New York Times, March 28, 2013

New York

Drawing All Of The Buildings In New York “Maybe it’s not necessary to do every single brownstone in Park Slope or every single building in Alphabet City. But they’re not all exactly the same. That’s what I love about brownstones. You look at them closely, and the cornices are different, or maybe the way the steps come up to the doors is different. That’s what makes drawing different from Instagram.” New York Times, March 28, 2013

Port au Prince, Haiti

Haiti shantytown gets a bright, art-inspired makeover. Workers this month began painting the concrete facades of buildings in Jalousie slum a rainbow of purple, peach, lime and cream, inspired by the dazzling “cities-in-the-skies” of well-known Haitian painter Préfète Duffaut, who died last year. The $1.4-million (U.S.) effort titled “Beauty versus Poverty: Jalousie in Colours” is part of a government project to relocate people from the displacement camps that sprouted up after Haiti’s 2010 earthquake. Globe & Mail, March 25, 2013

Brazil

How long can Brazil’s exhibition boom last? The country’s growing economy, new middle class and tax incentives for sponsors has resulted in record-breaking attendance figures. But the future of its blockbusters is uncertain. The Art Newspaper, March 28, 2013

London

Damage But Not Disaster From Fire At London’s Cuming Museum “Nobody was injured in a fire that began [Monday] at the Cuming Museum in Southwark, but the blaze has destroyed the museum’s roof and two of its displays. It is believed collections in storage may have also suffered water damage.” Museums Journal (UK) March 26, 2013

Controversial Caravaggio to be unveiled in London Questions about attribution remain over The Cardsharps, once owned by the late Italian Baroque specialist Denis Mahon. The Art Newspaper, March 28, 2013

Rome

The Meiji Crisis in Japanese Art An exhibition in Rome examines how Japan’s artists responded to a flood of Western works. New York Times, March 27, 2013

International

Attendance survey 2012: Tour de force show puts Tokyo on top The art of today might overshadow the art of the past in the salerooms and university lecture halls, but in the temporary exhibition galleries of museums worldwide, Old Masters still punch their weight, albeit when they travel a long way from home. Top of our international survey of exhibition attendance during 2012 was a show of Dutch Old Masters that started a world tour in Japan. The Art Newspaper, March 28, 2013

The rush to the box office Museums are feeding an addiction for shows that put works of art at risk and allow visitors no time to reflect The Art Newspaper, March 28, 2013

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