Visual Arts News Digest, Compiled by the Vancouver Art Gallery Library, July 17, 2017


Downtown Vancouver alley to be transformed by art A Kickstarter campaign to raise funds for a public art installation in a downtown laneway has come up big, nearly doubling its goal and securing $64,736 from 428 backers. The campaign was launched by a group called More Awesome Now, which includes the Downtown Vancouver Business Improvement Association (DVBIA) and HCMA Architecture + Design. The funds raised will go toward the transformation of Ackery’s Alley (located off Granville Street in the alley behind the Orpheum Theatre) into a space for public art and performance, featuring Field, an interactive installation by Vancouver-based artist Alex Beim, as the main attraction. BC Business, July 14, 2017

Metro Vancouver galleries hand kids the brush and pallette for summer Surrey’s art gallery may be 42 years old, but it’s ramping up an array of summer programs aimed squarely at arts enthusiasts significantly younger. It’s offering camps and classes for preschoolers up to youth and adults, or as its education and engagement co-ordinator called them, “those young at heart.”… Vancouver Art Gallery has a host of children’s and family programs, both hands-on and to learn about their collections. Metronews, July 12, 2017


Robert Amos: Artist creates felt portraits with feeling Dale Roberts is one of four fibre artists in an exhibition at the Martin Batchelor Gallery. Each is worthy and interesting, but Roberts’ needle-felted portraits are outstanding. I visited him at his studio, where his obsessive, multi-faceted, high-camp extravagance fills every corner of the large space. Times Colonist, July 16, 2017


HAGGO: An art collector shares his secrets John Hansler remembers how it all began. It was November 1957… A few more became many more. Hansler says he bought from artists in their studios, from private galleries and at auction. His collection grew to 120 pieces Last year, Hansler donated more than 90 of them to the McMaster Museum of Art. John Hansler: A Life Collecting, an exhibition at the museum, showcases a selection. Hamilton Spectator, July 15, 2017


Frank Gehry’s gift to Toronto gets better with age It’s hard to imagine that anyone — including perhaps Frank Gehry himself — knows the Art Gallery of Ontario quite as intimately as Roman Baron. After all, he’s worked security at the AGO for 28 years, ever since he was an OCAD student double-majoring in fine arts and photography who spent so much time in the gallery next door gazing at Emily Carr paintings or a memorable Jacques Lipchitz exhibit that he eventually figured he might as well work there. Toronto Star, July 15, 2017


Science meets art – on a wall in Strathcona Anatomy and Dentistry [McGill University] A large avant-garde science mural by the prominent artist Marian Dale Scott is being painstakingly restored in the Strathcona Anatomy and Dentistry Building. In June 1943, Scott unveiled Endocrinology, a commission by the famed Hungarian-born scientist Hans Selye… Marian Dale Scott (née Dale, June 26, 1906 – November 28, 1993) was a prominent member of Montreal society, and one of the generation of women who were determined to attend university or practice as professional artists. She is considered a pioneer of modern art in Canada and was among the first students at the École des beaux-arts de Montréal in 1924. McGill Reporter, July 12, 2017


Helen Frankenthaler’s Panoramas of Paint The dual exhibitions of Helen Frankenthaler’s paintings and woodcuts at the Sterling and Francine Clark Art Institute offer a compact, revelatory, and frequently stunning look at an artist whose reputation has been all too often yoked to a single, if singular, technique. Hyperallergic, July 14, 2017

Palm Beach

Images of melting glaciers head to backyard of Trump’s Florida home A few months after President Donald Trump pulled the US out of the Paris climate accord, the historic agreement signed by 195 countries to reduce greenhouse gas emissions, an exhibition is due to bring the impact of climate change to his Florida doorstep in September. Earth Works: Mapping the Anthropocene, at the Norton Museum of Art in West Palm Beach—just across the lagoon from Mar-a-Lago, Trump’s southern residence—features images of melting glaciers by the Brooklyn-based artist Justin Brice Guariglia. The Art Newspaper, July 17, 2017


V&A exhibition charts the rise and fall of humble plywood The social history of plywood – as an innovator in the furniture and transport industries, and a maligned everyday material – is explored in a new exhibition at London’s V&A museum, which opens this weekend. Curated by Elizabeth Bisley and Christopher Wilk, Plywood: Material of the Modern World provides a potted history of plywood through over 120 objects, ranging from the body of a plane to door handles. Dezeen, July 14, 2017


Louvre masterpieces damaged in storm Several masterpieces in the Louvre were among the victims of the July 9 storms in Paris, the museum has confirmed. Water damage caused by the storm was discovered on two of the works that make up Nicolas Poussin’s Four Seasons in the Sept-Cheminées room, while The Triumph of Mordecai by Jean-François de Troy was also affected.  Works by 17th-century French artists Georges de La Tour and Eustache Le Sueur, which were on display in another room, have been taken down for the same reason. The Connexion, July 17, 2017; see also The Art Newspaper


Italian Authorities Confiscate 21 Modigliani Works After Several Confirmed as Fakes Authorities in Genoa have confiscated twenty-one works previously credited to Amedeo Modigliani after confirming that several of the paintings, showcased in an exhibition at the Doge’s Palace in Venice and now on display in Genoa, were most likely inauthentic… Artforum, July 17, 2017


China’s artists defy censorship ban to mourn Liu Xiaobo The death on Thursday of Chinese dissident activist and Nobel laureate Liu Xiaobo elicited an outpouring of grief and anger in China, particularly from its artists. Though usually preferring to remain safely apolitical, members of the Chinese art world defied a ban on covering or mentioning Liu and expressed their sorrow and frustration at his death through mostly indirect references on Chinese social media. Ai Weiwei, the Chinese dissident artist now living in Berlin, told the BBC yesterday: “It still comes as a big shock… because he has been such a symbol for China’s human rights or democratic movement.”  The Art Newspaper, July 14, 2017

Hobart, Australia

Peter Mungkuri Wins World’s Richest Landscape Art Prize Aboriginal artist Peter Mungkuri has been announced as the winner of the inaugural $100,000 Hadley’s Art Prize – a themed award that is heralded as the world’s richest landscape art prize. The theme of the 2017 award is “History and Place,” with the prize awarded to the best portrayal of the Australian landscape which acknowledges the past. Mr Mungkuri was awarded the prize for a depiction of his birthplace of Fregon in Central Australia that tells a very personal story of the place where he grew up. Titled “Ngura Wiru (Good Country),” the work is a delicate ink on somerset paper drawing. Blouin Artinfo, July 15, 2017




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