Visual Arts News Digest, Compiled by the Vancouver Art Gallery Library, November 28, 2016

Lawren Harris sale could prompt surge of interest in Canadian artists “It means great things for the Canadian artists of that generation,” said private gallerist Alan Klinkhoff, whose father Walter Klinkhoff sold Mountain Forms in 1984 to Imperial Oil Ltd. – the seller on Wednesday. Klinkoff also predicted that a touring exhibition being organized by the National Gallery of Canada could prompt a similar surge in interest in the works of James Wilson Morrice (1865 – 1924). “My guess is that if a Lawren Harris is worth $10-million, a Morrice could be worth $20-million,” Klinkhoff said. The Globe and Mail, November 25, 2016

German artist takes hands-on approach to her painting of Vancouver harbour  A German artist has painted Vancouver harbour with her hands for an international art project called Suite View. Jeannine Platz is travelling around the world to paint the harbour and skyline of cities from the perspective of a hotel room. In Vancouver, she turned Room 2090 in the Westin Bayshore into a temporary studio while she painted the view looking east toward Burrard Inlet, the North Shore mountains and the buildings along the downtown waterfront. Vancouver Sun, November 25, 2016

The Imagination Zone: CityStudio to launch public experiments in False Creek tomorrow (November 26)  Students enrolled in the Simon Fraser University semester at CityStudio—an experimentation and innovation hub for the City of Vancouver—will be launching The Imagination Zone, which are projects co-created with Vancouver artists and Vancouver city staff. The day-long event will showcase five different experiments created to help the city achieve its goals of being healthy, creative, and vibrant…Artists participating include Stuart Ward & Ben Z Cooper of Hfour; Nick Gregson, Vancouver mural artist; Michael Bean, Biz Studio; George Rahi, Hadden Park Fieldhouse; Bryce Aspinall, visual artist; and Clara Tsang, SFU systems engineering student. Georgia Straight, November 25, 2016

Edmonton arts project promoting reconciliation honoured by Governor General  A reconciliation project that includes some of the earliest known photos of Edmontonians is being recognized with a prestigious national award. The poetry and art project, titled Reconciling Edmonton, garnered an honourable mention at the Governor General’s history awards… The project used seven historic photographs, including one dating back to 1884, to showcase reconciliation from the signing of Treaty 6 to the present day., November 25, 2016

Inside the sale of Lawren Harris’s Mountain Forms  Mountain Forms, created by a leading member of the Group of Seven, portrays a fictional peak in Banff, Alta. It is oil on canvas, titled and dated on the back, resting in a frame made of blue clay and gold leaf, finished with platinum. However, if viewers step back, the painting is framed more significantly by a network of auctioneers and wealthy art collectors far more intricate than Harris’s brushstrokes. Mountain Forms is not considered Canada’s highest-quality or rarest painting; that it is Canada’s most expensive hints at who and what determined its financial value. Macleans, November 25, 2016

Alex Janvier comes full circle with National Gallery retrospective  Alex Janvier, the show, like Alex Janvier, the artist, is a big deal, but perhaps to no one so much as the man himself. “It’s like a freak accident to land here,” Janvier chuckled the other day, wheeling around the 65-year retrospective of his work just opened at the National Gallery of Canada… From his wheelchair, Janvier, at 81, can view his entire life in pictures here — more than 150, all told — from paintings he made as a 15-year old residential school student in Alberta all the way up to the here and now (he still works, daily and tirelessly, in his studio on the high northern plains of Cold Lake, Alta.). Toronto Star, November 27, 2016

La Balade pour la Paix / An Open-Air Museum – A major public art exhibition on Sherbrooke Street celebrating Montréal’s 375th anniversary A major component of the official program of events for Montréal’s 375th anniversary was announced today with the unveiling of La Balade pour la Paix / An Open-Air Museum. This world-class public art exhibition honours the 375th anniversary of Montréal, the 50th anniversary of Expo 67 and the 150th anniversary of Canada. It was designed and organized by the Montreal Museum of Fine Arts (MMFA) in cooperation with the McCord Museum, with assistance from Concordia and McGill universities. It will be presented along a kilometre-long span of Sherbrooke Street for five months, from May 29th to October 27th, 2017, and feature 67 works bearing messages of peace, in keeping with the universal values of humanism, tolerance and openness that inspired Expo 67. Canada Newswire, November 23, 2016

17th century settlement Fort Ville-Marie found  After years of research, officials at Montreal’s archaeology and history museum say they’re now able to pinpoint the precise location of the city’s first European settlement. Although archaeologists have been digging the Fort Ville-Marie site for years, a recent discovery has allowed them to confirm the exact dimensions of the structure that housed the city’s early French settlers. “For the first time we know what it looked like in the mid-17th century, what it was made of, and where the site of the future pavilion was inside the fort,” said Louise Pothier, an archaeologist at the Pointe-à-Callière museum., November 24, 2016

New York
Rare Le Corbusier pop-up book showcases his colour theories A rare first edition of Le Corbusier’s 1931 interactive design guide Polychromie Architecturale: Die Farbenklaviaturen is up for auction in New York. The book – which was created for Swiss wallpaper manufacturer Salubra – features pop-up and pull-out sections, based on the architect’s approach to colour. Dezeen, November 27, 2016

Critics underwhelmed by “clumsy” new Design Museum  The Design Museum’s new home inside the former Commonwealth Institute in London is an oak-heavy, hotel-like interior that is impressive, but could have been so much more exhilarating, according to critics. London’s relocated Design Museum opened its doors to the public for the first time yesterday, although the press were invited in for a tour earlier this month. Observer critic Rowan Moore said it was “an exceptional achievement” that an attraction that first opened in the basement of the V&A now has its own £83 million premises. Dezeen, November 25, 2016

Norman Foster to design Prado extension in historic palace    The British architect Norman Foster has won the prestigious international competition to remodel the 17th-century Hall of Realms as a new wing of the Museo del Prado in Madrid. The winning design, conceived jointly with the Spanish architect Carlos Rubio, beat submissions from museums favourites David Chipperfield and Rem Koolhaas on a shortlist announced in June. First proposed by the Spanish government in 1995, the project to restore the only surviving part of Philip IV’s Buen Retiro pleasure palace…has been hampered by years of austerity. The plan was to open the 5,000 sq. m space in time for the museum’s 200th anniversary in 2019. This timescale now looks unrealistic, as construction will probably start in 2018, the Spanish newspaper ABC reports. The budget is estimated at €32m. The Art Newspaper, November 25, 2016

President Putin and Pope Francis agree Vatican masterpieces show in Moscow   An exhibition of 42 paintings from the Vatican Museums’ Pinacoteca including the 12th century The Blessing Christ and Caravaggio’s The Deposition (1603-04), are going on show at the State Tretyakov Gallery in Moscow thanks to high-level diplomacy between Russian President Vladimir Putin and Pope Francis. The official opening of the Vatican exhibition at the Tretyakov, called Roma Aeterna, was held yesterday (23 November) and will open to the public on 25 November (until 19 February). The Tretyakov will make a reciprocal loan to the Vatican in the autumn of 2017. The Art Newspaper, November 24, 2016

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