Visual Arts News Digest, Compiled by the Vancouver Art Gallery Library, November 22, 2016

Abandoned car artwork on display in Vancouver Is it art or an eyesore? That’s a question many people are asking with the arrival of a new exhibit in downtown Vancouver. Outside the Vancouver Art Gallery, at the corner of Howe and Georgia Streets, is an abandoned car with a cage filled with shopping carts on the top., November 18, 2016

Visual resistance: Shawn Hunt and Diyan Achjadi make colonialism visible at Richmond Art Gallery  Both artists take on colonialism in their own unique ways that come out of their backgrounds and experiences. But of the two, Hunt’s work struck me as more distilled and focused. Rather than tell stories in text, it speaks in a visual language that honours the traditions of aboriginal artists who made work for thousands of years before Europeans and other settlers arrived. It’s a contemporary and visual resistance to colonialism. Diyan Achjadi, Shawn Hunt: Cultural Conflation continues to Sunday, Dec. 31 at the Richmond Art Gallery. The exhibition is curated by Nan Capogna. Vancouver Sun, November 18, 2016

Robert Amos: Artist’s journey from China to the Island  Recently, I interviewed Brian Travers-Smith, a legendary watercolour painter in the 1960s and 1970s, who abruptly stopped painting in 1983. This week, I noticed one of his fine watercolours in the window of The Gallery in Oak Bay Village (2223a Oak Bay Ave., 250-598-9890) and was inspired to share some things he told me. Travers-Smith’s grandfather was the illegitimate son of the first Earl of Birkenhead, a rich man who had an affair with a Miss Travers. So the earl sent him to a good school, gave him a nice, fat stipend and sent him abroad where he wouldn’t bring dishonour to the family. He ended up in Tienjing in China. Times Colonist, November 20, 2016

WAG Opens Two Boarding Exhibits to Shine on Land Issues Two new exhibitions at the Winnipeg Art Gallery are displaying how Indigenous art, culture, and land intersect. Boarder X and Vernon Ah Kee opened to the public on Friday. “The Winnipeg Art Gallery is working to embrace reconciliation, Indigenous communities, and their art,” said Dr. Stephen Borys, WAG director and CEO… Boarder X features work by contemporary artists from Indigenous nations across Canada: Jordan Bennett, Roger Crait, Steven Davies, Mark Igloliorte, Mason Mashon, Meghann O’Brien, and Les Ramsay., November 19, 2016

Winnipeggers puzzled by new ‘Heaven Between’ sculpture set to be lit  Several passers-by at the corner of Broadway and Edmonton Street offered their own suggestions to CTV Winnipeg on Sunday, with such guesses as a bee’s nest, an egg, a bell or “something cultural, maybe?” The sculpture is called “Heaven Between,” and it’s cone-like shape resembles a space capsule, with a hollow bottom and leaf-shaped cutouts in the dome… Artist Bill Pechet says the sculpture is meant to evoke the two domes of the nearby train station and the Manitoba Legislative Building., November 21, 2016

Through Partage Montréal, art is ‘delivered’ like organic vegetables Karen Lampcov wants people to purchase art the way she buys her vegetables. The Montreal West artist is one of the founders of Partage Montréal, a non-profit community-supported art venture that brings together artists and collectors. It is based on the model of community-supported agriculture farms..With Partage Montréal, subscribers sign up to receive a harvest of artworks instead of vegetables. Montreal Gazette, November 21, 2016

United States
21 artists on what it means to make art ahead of a Trump presidency  Being an artist today means something very different than it did just two weeks ago. As the nation collectively struggles to come to terms with what a Donald Trump presidency means, we call upon artists as activists, optimists, truth-tellers and revolutionaries, to resist the normalization of hate and prejudice, to stand up for the communities that have been marginalized, and advocate for an America that serves all of its citizens. Shortly after the election, we reached out to artists whose work we admire, asking their opinion on the role of an artist over the coming four years. Huffington Post, November 17, 2016

New York
Here Is the 2017 Whitney Biennial List! The Whitney has released the list of artists who have been chosen to participate in the 2017 Whitney Biennial. It will be the first biennial to take place in the museum’s new building in the Meatpacking District. In a statement posted to its website, the Whitney announced that there will be 63 participating artists. Artnews, November 17, 2016

Kerry James Marshall’s America  “Mastry,” an exhilarating Kerry James Marshall retrospective at the Met Breuer, is a big deal for three reasons: it marks the museum’s blessing of Marshall and, in turn, Marshall’s benediction of the museum, and it affirms a revival of grandly scaled, thematic figurative painting. Marshall, now sixty-one and based in Chicago, has achieved prominence as an artist of universal appeal—he won a MacArthur “genius” grant in 1997—with a particular focus. He has strictly depicted African-American life and experience since 1980… The New Yorker, November 7, 2016

A Step in the Right Direction for the Display of Native American Art  At the Newark Museum, Native American artworks are no longer displayed as mere cultural artifacts of the past. The museum’s impressive collection, formerly housed in a corner of the Main Building and far from the galleries for American, 20th-, and 21st-century art, has been rehung as Native Artists of North America. Enlivened with indigenous voice, its works have been temporally unmoored and allowed to speak across time and space. Hyperallergic, November 21, 2016

North Dakota
Artist creates mirrored shields for Standing Rock protesters  As protesters and police continue to clash in North Dakota over a $3.7bn oil pipeline, the artist Cannupa Hanska Luger plans this week to distribute mirrored shields he created, to inspire the demonstrators to “hold ground and not panic”. He also hopes that, once the shields are in use, police will see the reflection of their own shared humanity “underneath their uniforms—and realise that they are also on our side”. The Art Newspaper, November 21, 2016

Wakefield, Yorkshire
Helen Marten Wins 2016 Hepworth Prize for Sculpture  The Hepworth Wakefield museum in England announced today that Helen Marten has won its 2016 Hepworth Prize for Sculpture. Given to a British sculptor, the biennial award, which was bestowed for the first time this year, comes with £30,000, or about $37,000. Marten, who is nominated for this year’s Turner Prize, has received acclaim lately for her works that combine unlike objects, creating tough-to-describe narratives. Artnews, November 17, 2016

Jeff Koons unveils plans for a memorial to the victims of the Paris terror attacks  The US artist Jeff Koons has unveiled plans for a commemorative sculpture in Paris modelled on the Statue of Liberty, honouring the victims of the terrorist attacks in the city in November last year when Islamic extremists killed 130 people. The 11-metre high bronze and stainless steel work, featuring a hand holding a bunch of flowers (Bouquet of Tulips), is due to be installed on the Place de Tokyo outside the Musée d’Art Moderne de la Ville de Paris and the Palais de Tokyo next year. The Art Newspaper, November 22, 2016

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