Visual Arts News Digest, Compiled by the Vancouver Art Gallery Library, May 18, 2016


Monumental vase with B.C. link making provincial debut at Audain Art Museum  A monumental copper, silver and gold vase crafted in the U.S. more than a hundred years ago – but with a strong connection to British Columbia – is in the province for the first time. Globe & Mail, May 17, 2016


8 Questions about Art, Motherhood and the Anthropocene. “Mapping the Maternal: Art, Ethics and Anthropocene” is a colloquium that ran May 12 to 14, housed in an art installation titled Mothernism by Lise Haller Baggesen at the University of Alberta’s Arts Based Research Studio. “New Maternalisms Redux” is an exhibition that opened May 12 at the FAB Gallery.  “Mapping the Maternal” co-organizer and curator Natalie S. Loveless discusses some key questions around this constellation of topics and events.  Canadian Art, May 12, 2016

Emerging Artist Award winners named. The Lieutenant Governor of Alberta’s Emerging Art Awards will be presented at a private ceremony at Government House in Edmonton on June 13.  This year’s recipients are: Ashleigh Bartlett, Michael Bridge, Jason de Haan, Michael Kingston, Jessica Jalbert, Tyler Los-Jones, Amy Malbeuf, Hans Olson, Bradley Somer and Caitlin Wood. Calgary Herald, May 17, 2016


Barry Pottle’s photography explores Inuit objectification by ID tags.  It’s something of a salutary surprise to see Ottawa-based Barry Pottle’s Awareness Series at Toronto’s Feheley Fine Arts, one of the country’s longest-running purveyors of fine Inuit art. Not only is the series an exhibition of colour photographs, 19 in total, the ensemble has a decidedly conceptual/historical underpinning, rather than being a potpourri of depictions of the Arctic landscape and contemporary Inuit culture.  Globe & Mail, May 17, 2016

What’s the Value of First-Person Criticism?  Caoimhe Morgan-Feir and Leah Sandals debate the merits and limits of first-person criticism in art. Canadian Art, May 17, 2016


The Uncanny Art of Brandon Vickerd. A group of moviegoers leaving the theatre next to Artcite in Windsor, Ontario, crowds around the small lit-up orb of a spacecraft lying in the shattered windshield of a parked car. For an instant, they believe it might actually be an object from space. It’s a dark delight. Canadian Art, May 16, 2016


Visual Arts review: Meryl McMaster at Carleton University Art Gallery.  Now, just 27 and only six years out of the Ontario College of Art and Design, Meryl McMaster has a career-to-date survey at the Carleton University Art Gallery, a rare honour for an artist so young. Confluence, which continues to August 28 and then tours across Canada, includes three projects that McMaster has created, including one begun while still a student. Ottawa Citizen, May 13, 2016


Montreal’s Musée d’art contemporain to receive $37.7-million in government funding toward expansion plan.  No museum can show everything it owns, but Montreal’s Musée d’art contemporain may be especially constrained, with only enough display space for 1.5 per cent of its collection. That will change dramatically with the commitment on Friday of $37.7-million by the federal and provincial governments to a project that will double the MAC’s exhibition space.  Globe & Mail, May 13, 2016


Sappyfest Residency Melds Art, Music, Collaboration and Chaos.  In early May, the residency brought together 10 artists to make work and put on a show in Sackville. In addition to Jon Claytor, other artists participating were fellow SappyFest co-founder Paul Henderson, musicians Shotgun Jimmie, Steven Lambke and Michael Feuerstack, writer Ian Roy and visual artists Amy Siegel, Graeme Patterson, Mitchell Wiebe and Amanda Fauteux. Canadian Art, May 18, 2016


A Look at the Creative Process and What Makes an Artist Tick.  “Finding: Source Material in the Archives of American Art,”  examines the way that different artists use source material as inspiration for their creations…  The Archives of American Art is a research center that collects the papers of American artists—including gallery records, artists’ papers, love letters and diaries. It mounts three or four exhibitions a year. Some of the material is whimsical, such as the gargantuan amount of source material collected by Chicago collage and semi-abstract artist (1930-2009).  The Smithsonian, May 17, 2016

New York

Frida Kahlo Piece Is Most Expensive By Latin American Artist Ever Sold at Auction The Frida Kahlo, Dos desnudos en el bosque (La tierra misma), sold for a little over $8 million with buyer’s premium and was a record for the artist at auction as well as a record for a Latin American artist at auction, according to Brooke Lampley, the head of the Impressionist and modern department at Christie’s.  Observer, May 13, 2016

Art World? More Like SeaWorld: The Use of Live Animals as Objects of Art.  Unlike two or three dimensional representations of animals, or even dead animals (the stuffed goat central to Robert Rauschenberg’s “Monogram,” or Joseph Beuys’ dead hare, for instance), the use of living animals in contemporary art is becoming more and more common. In the second week of May alone, two well-publicized art works were presented in two different parts of New York City using living animals as material. Counterpunch, May 16, 2016


Herzog and De Meuron: Tate Modern’s architects on their radical new extension.  Twenty years ago, Jacques Herzog and Pierre de Meuron converted London’s Bankside power station into a gallery. Now they are about to unveil the Switch House – and reinvent how we view art all over again. The Guardian, May 15, 2016.  See also: Herzog and de Meuron’s Tate Modern expansion set to open June 17The Architect’s Newspaper,  May 17, 2016

What I think about Tate Modern: artists, musicians and critics give their views. As Tate Modern gets ready to unveil its massive new extension, famous gallery-goers reflect on its influence on British art and cultural life. The Guardian, May 15, 2016

Birzeit, West Bank

Palestinian Museum Prepares to Open, Minus Exhibitions.  When the $24 million Palestinian Museum celebrates its opening on Wednesday, it will have almost everything: a stunning, contemporary new building; soaring ambitions as a space to celebrate and redefine Palestinian art, history and culture; an outdoor amphitheater; a terraced garden.  One thing the museum will not have is exhibitions.  The New York Times, May 16, 2016


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