Visual Arts News Digest, Compiled by the Vancouver Art Gallery Library, February 29, 2016

Vancouver Art Gallery goes big for groundbreaking MashUp exhibition  You don’t need to look much farther than the Vancouver Art Gallery’s latest exhibition to see that it doesn’t do anything halfway. The first thing to note about MashUp: The Birth of Modern Culture is the scale of it: 371 works by 156 artists on loan from 75 private and public collections from eight countries around the globe. Three years of planning went into MashUp, as well as the expertise of 30 local and international curators. The Westender, February 25, 2016

$1.5 Million in New Indigenous-Art Awards Announced This afternoon, the Hnatyshyn Foundation launched a new awards program that will provide some $1.5 million to Indigenous artists in 2017. The REVEAL Indigenous Art Awards are intended to honour Indigenous Canadian artists working in six artistic categories—dance, music, theatre, literature, film/video (media arts) and visual arts/fine craft. The program of awards and promotional activities includes 150 cash awards of $10,000 each. The awards will be given in 2017 to fuel the creation of new artistic works. Canadian Art blog, February 27, 2016

Geoffrey James selected as Toronto’s first Photo Laureate Internationally admired Toronto-based photographer Geoffrey James has been selected as Toronto’s first Photo Laureate, pending approval from City Council at its March session…. Toronto’s Photo Laureate is the first of its kind in Canada. It honours a photographer recognized for exceptional photography and whose work focuses on subjects relevant to the people who live in the city. The Photo Laureate will champion photography and visual arts in the city, and will use his or her perspective to create a dialogue on contemporary issues. Gallerieswest blog, February 28, 2016

St. John’s
What Is the New Newfoundland Dream? What does Newfoundland dream about now? This is one of the questions put to the artists contributing to the exhibition “Land of Mirrors: Ongoing Experiments in Newfoundland,” curated by Mary MacDonald at Eastern Edge Gallery. There is a subtle ambiguity in the subtitle of this exhibition. It might mean that ongoing experiments are happening in Newfoundland, have always happened there, or it might mean that experiments are happening to the very thingness that is Newfoundland—or was Newfoundland. Canadian Art, February 26, 2016


From Ancient Inuit Maps to Poetry, Researchers Send Art to the Moon A capsule filled with art and artifacts is headed to the moon at the start of next year, where it will remain indefinitely as a celebration of the human capacity for creativity. Designed by an international team of artists, scientists, and engineers, the less-than-a-foot tall object is hitching a ride on a rover engineered by Carnegie Mellon University’s Robotics Institute that’s competing for the Google Lunar XPRIZE. If the journey proves successful, the MoonArk will land approximately 300 works in space, from ancient maps to poems to digital art., February 26, 2016

New York
The Met Will Amend Its Admission Policy to Settle Class Action Lawsuit The Metropolitan Museum of Art has announced that it will be amending its “pay what you wish” admission policy as part of their settlement agreement in the three-year-old class action lawsuit Saska v. Metropolitan Museum. The museum will be “refining” (their word) the language on signs at all admission desks, their website, and all self-service ticket kiosks, replacing their current “recommended admission” signs with slightly less anxiety-inducing ones reading “suggested admission.” Artnews, February 26, 2016

Turner’s villa turns to crowdfunding to bolster restoration project A casual chat in a queue at the post office led to years of back-breaking work for an art historian to prevent the house JMW Turner designed for himself as a modest country home from collapsing. Catherine Parry-Wingfield is chair of the trust that inherited Sandycombe Lodge in Twickenham, which she describes as “a three-dimensional work of art by one of the greatest masters”, from the man in the queue. Within weeks, work will begin on a £2.4m Heritage Lottery Fund-backed project to restore the villa. The Guardian, February 28, 2016

Berlin’s Museum Tours in Arabic Forge a Bridge to Refugees The program is largely financed by the German government, including the Culture Ministry, which answers directly to the office of the chancellor, Angela Merkel. It also draws on some private foundation funding. It offers two Arabic-language tours a week at each of four Berlin museums: The Islamic Art Museum and the Museum of the Ancient Near East (which are both inside the Pergamon); the German Historical Museum; and the Bode Museum, including its collection of Byzantine art. The New York Times, February 28, 2016

Gerhard Richter slams proposed closure of Germany’s Museum Morsbroich The German artist Gerhard Richter has spoken out against the proposed closure of Museum Morsbroich in Leverkusen near Cologne, saying in an open letter to the city’s mayor, Uwe Richrath, that plans to close the Modern and contemporary art institution and sell the collection are “alarming”. The museum was the first in North Rhine-Westphalia to dedicate itself exclusively to contemporary art after the Second World War. The Art Newspaper, February 29, 2016

Children curate Warsaw museum exhibition A new exhibition curated by children is opening at the National Museum in Poland’s capital, Warsaw. It took six months to prepare and covers a variety of periods and subjects ranging from ancient artefacts to contemporary sculpture… Sixty-nine children between the ages of six and 14 were given access to the building’s storerooms, and some of the 300 items that they selected for display have never been shown to the general public before. The youngsters “found and liberated” the pieces, the museum says. Called “Anything Goes”, it’s getting top billing at the National Museum as the main temporary exhibition between now and May., February 26, 2016



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