Visual Arts News Digest, Compiled by the Vancouver Art Gallery Library, December 14, 2016

North Vancouver
New museum approved by City of North Vancouver at Lonsdale Quay  The City of North Vancouver is getting a new museum on Lower Lonsdale in 2019. The $5.555-million museum will be in the city’s community amenity facility at 131 West Esplanade across from the Polygon Gallery — the new home for Presentation House Gallery, which opens next year… The 16,000-square-foot museum is being built with $3 million from the federal government and $2.555 million from the city. Vancouver Sun, December 13, 2016

Art Gallery of Alberta to Harris fans: We’ve got lots of them The buzz over Group of Seven painter Lawren Harris could be a boon for the Art Gallery of Alberta. One of Harris’ paintings recently fetched a record (for a Group of Seven painter) $11 million at auction, and Hollywood actor Steve Martin is one of many who count the painter as one of their favourites. The resulting interest in Harris, then, has the gallery feeling wealthy with what you seek – they’ve got a Harris for you to come inspect. MetroNews Edmonton, December 8, 2016

Councillors want Remai Modern opening clarified  Saskatoon city council wants some answers on the apparently shifting dates for the opening of the Remai Modern art gallery. … Council members pushed gallery executive director and CEO Gregory Burke on Nov. 30 for an opening date as they debated whether to approve the gallery’s 2017 budget. Saskatoon Star-Phoenix, December 12, 2016

New Canadians create home-themed artwork displayed at Aga Khan Museum  Adham Alazhari arrived 10 months ago to Canada, a country he had heard of but knew nothing about, and without speaking a word of English… Alazhari is one of some newly arrived 230 Greenwood Secondary School and Marc Garneau Collegiate Institute students who took part in the outreach program Finding Home: Personal Journeys and Visual Narratives, which saw participants create three-dimensional structures based on the concept of what “home” meant to them., December 14, 2016

Giant interactive wheels light up Montreal The streets of Montreal have come alive with a series of illuminated interactive wheels. Loop, an installation by artists Olivier Girouard and Jonathan Villeneuve in collaboration with Ottoblix, is part of Luminothérapie, Quebec’s largest annual competition for temporary public art installations. Also a traveling show, the display comprised of 13 different tales with 24 images each will be accessible to the public in Montreal through January 29, 2017, before moving on to the next city of the tour., December 14, 2016

Cape Dorset
New Kenojuak Cultural Centre gets $100K donation in Annie Pootoogook’s memory  As a personal tribute to the late Annie Pootoogook, the foundation that awarded her the Sobey Art Award in 2006 is donating $100,000 to help build Cape Dorset’s proposed Kenojuak Cultural Centre and Print Shop. “[Annie Pootoogook] was a beautiful person on the inside and the outside and touched people, I’m sure, everywhere she went,” said Bernard Doucet, secretary for the Donald R. Sobey Art Foundation. Pootoogook, whose prints connected Inuit traditions with contemporary themes, was found dead in Ottawa in September., December 14, 2016

New York
‘Friends and Enemies’ Gather Amid Silence and Gold for Marina Abramovic’s 70th Birthday  Imagine an ascent up the Guggenheim Museum’s spiral rotunda, stopping along the way to stare into Agnes Martin’s grids and fields while wearing noise-cancelling headphones. Silence sets the scene, and gold leaf is flaking from museum-goers’ lips—for reasons that only later become clear—as they whisper to speak. After 70 minutes of this muffled lavishness, Marina Abramović enters the atrium below—and strikes a gong. This was “Part 1” of Abramović’s 70th birthday party at the Guggenheim last Thursday night. Titled “MARINA 70,” the party did not lack the kind of performative interventions for which Abramović is known. Artnews, December 14, 2016

‘We Chafed at the Restrictions’: New York Times Art Editor Discusses the History, and End, of the Inside Art Column  On Friday, the New York Times debuted a new column in its arts pages, Show Us Your Wall, which will consist of interviews with collectors from a variety of fields where they open up about how they install their art collection at home. But more notably, the Times also retired its Inside Art column, which had been a mainstay of the culture section for over two decades, a must-read for art-market participants and prognosticators every Friday. Artnews, December 12, 2016

New Canaan
Mid-century modern designer Jens Risom dies aged 100  Danish-American furniture designer Jens Risom – one of the first to introduce Scandinavian design to the US – has died aged 100. Risom, who passed away at his home in New Canaan, Connecticut, on 9 December 2016, was a pioneer of mid-century modern design in the USA. His best-known works include the 1943 Risom Lounge Chair produced by US brand Knoll, which features a seat and back initially woven from unwanted military parachute straps. Dezeen, December 13, 2016

Smithsonian American Art Museum Acquires Nearly 100 Works by Self-Taught Artists This week the Smithsonian American Art Museum (SAAM) announced its largest acquisition of work by self-taught artists in 20 years. The Margaret Z. Robson Collection comprises 93 works by major figures like James Castle, Judith Scott, Thornton Dial Sr., and Bill Traylor, as well as 11 artists previously unrepresented in the SAAM collections. The museum has concentrated on folk and self-taught art since 1970, far ahead of many institutions… Hyperallergic, December 14, 2016

An Artistic Discovery Makes a Curator’s Heart Pound  A retired doctor visited a Paris auction house in March with a portfolio of drawings. It contained a work now attributed to Leonardo da Vinci and valued at about $15.8 million. The New York Times, December 11, 2016

Modern art breaks free of the old borders  Even as globalism appears to be going into reverse, major museums are pressing ahead with efforts to broaden the canon and internationalise art history. The Museum of Modern Art (MoMA) in New York recently announced a gift of more than 100 Latin American works that will change the balance of its collections. Meanwhile, the Haus der Kunst in Munich (a non-collecting institution) is presenting one of the most important reappraisals of the post-war period. The Art Newspaper, December 14, 2016

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