Visual Arts News Digest, Compiled by the Vancouver Art Gallery Library, January 23, 2018


Artist brings 40 years of painting to Richmond exhibit (photos) Richmond’s Lipont Art Centre is displaying a retrospective exhibition of Joseph Synn Kune Loh, a Vancouver artist who has dedicated almost half a century to painting. The exhibit, Unlocking the Code, showcases almost 100 of Loh’s works of art, ranging from abstract landscape paintings created in the 1970s to recent surrealism-style pieces… The exhibition is open until Feb. 4 daily from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. at Lipont Art Centre. Richmond News, January 20, 2018


Patkau’s Audain Art Museum wins 2018 AIA Award In Whistler, British Columbia, Patkau Architects’ sculptural Audain Art Museum has added another major award to its impressive list of honours. Already the recipient of the 2017 AIBC Lieutenant Governor of British Columbia Medal in Architecture, as well a Canadian Wood Council Design Award, John and Patricia Patkau’s project was named one of only eight winners at the 2018 American Institute of Architects (AIA) Awards. Canadian Architect, January 15, 2018


Robert Amos: The colourful legacy of artist E.J. Hughes Of all the artists of British Columbia, Emily Carr undoubtedly takes top place. And after her comes E.J. Hughes (1913-2007). You might not know Hughes, but he’s strongly represented at the National Gallery, and his paintings are a constant feature of art auctions, selling for as much as $1.6 million. Hughes was born in North Vancouver, grew up in Nanaimo, and lived most of his long life at Shawnigan Lake and Duncan. Times Colonist, January 21, 2018

UVic exhibition reveals hidden history of transgender art and activism A new exhibition in Victoria aims to increase awareness of the history of transgender people through images, art and ephemeral objects. The exhibition, Trans Hirstory in 99 Objects, features visual material drawn from the world’s largest transgender archives. While the rights and public profile of transgender people have increased in recent years, Aaron Devor, the founder and director of the transgender archives at the University of Victoria, said they have been absent from mainstream versions of history., January 17, 2018


Interim art gallery curator asks if you see truth in photography “To our contemporary mind, there is a kind of awareness that images, photographs aren’t necessarily truthful,” said Kamloops Art Gallery interim curator Adrienne Fast. “But in the 19th century, people had this assumption that the photograph is true. Whereas Indians never fell for that. Indians knew.”… The Kamloops Art Gallery’s new exhibit, Re Present: Photography from South Asia, features both painted and colonial images… Among the 20 artists featured is contemporary Indian artist Nandan Ghiya, who takes reproduced archival images and “interferes” with them. Kamloops This Week, January 18, 2018


Sudbury gallery hosting the art of Ken Danby The exhibition Beyond the Crease: Ken Danby, will be on display at the Art Gallery of Sudbury starting Thursday. It runs until April 1. This exhibition spans four decades of the late Danby’s remarkable career as an accomplished realist painter, watercolourist, printmaker and commercial artist who lent visual form to familiar Canadian icons and ideals. Organized and circulated by the Art Gallery of Hamilton, the exhibition showcases four decades of Danby’s artistic practice. Sudbury Star, January 18, 2018


Seattle City Council approves Seattle Asian Art Museum expansion A planned renovation and expansion of the Seattle Asian Art Museum, located in Capitol Hill’s Volunteer Park, can move forward after gaining unanimous approval from the Seattle City Council on Monday afternoon. Plans for the art deco building, which was initially built in 1933… include seismic upgrades, a new HVAC system with cooling and humidity controls, a loading dock, and the freight elevator, for the safety of both the museum’s visitors and its art. The museum’s expansion will include new space for galleries, offices, meetings, and studios. The whole renovation will cost $54 million, with $21 million coming from the city. The museum’s $33 million will be helped along by federal historic building tax credits and fundraising. Curbed, January 23, 2018

New York

Jack Whitten, Beloved Painter of Abstract Cosmologies, Dies at 78 Whitten, whose process-based canvases pushed abstraction into new territory, has died at age 78, according to his gallery Hauser & Wirth. “It is with great sadness that we confirm the passing of Jack Whitten,” Marc Payot, a partner and vice president at the gallery, said in a statement. “He was a remarkable man—an artist of endless inventiveness, originality, and honesty, as well as a wonderful friend…” As with many painters whose style matured during the late 1960s and early ’70s, Whitten’s career wasn’t widely recognized until the past few years. But today, when Whitten’s visually seductive paintings appear in major museum shows, it has become difficult to imagine a history of abstract painting without his work. Artnews, January 21, 2018


London’s Hayward Gallery Is Born Again at 50, Celebrating Its Major Revamp With Andreas Gursky Show Ralph Rugoff’s arrival at London’s Hayward Gallery more than a decade ago was a game changer for the Brutalist Kunsthalle besides the Thames, which is 50 years old this year. The gallery reopens on Thursday, January 25, following a major revamp with its concrete walls cleaned, terrazzo floors replaced, and most importantly, its numerous skylights uncovered. The upper galleries are now daylit, which was the original intention of its architects and their artistic advisor, the sculptor Henry Moore. Artnet News, January 23, 2018


French Art Luminaries Reject Jeff Koons’s Flashy Gift to Paris as a ‘Cynical’ Act of ‘Product Placement’  This past Sunday, January 21, French cultural personalities penned an open letter in the daily newspaper Libération urging the city not to go ahead with the planned installation of the gigantic sculpture gifted by Jeff Koons in the wake of the Paris attacks. Twenty-four artists, museum workers, collectors and politicians, including artists Christian Boltanski and Tania Mouraud, filmmaker Olivier Assayas, and the former Minister of Culture, Frédéric Mitterrand, have put their name to the letter deeming Koons’s gift symbolically inappropriate, undemocratic, and architecturally, patrimonially, artistically, financially, and technically “shocking.” Artnet News, January 23, 2018


French Experts Doubt Practicality of Bayeux Tapestry Loan President Emmanuel Macron’s recent announcement that France will send the Bayeux Tapestry to England in a historic loan was a grand gesture of cultural diplomacy, but such a move across the channel might be a pipe dream. Experts who care for the 950-year-old embroidery have called the decision premature, according to AFP, expressing concern over whether the artwork is even in the proper condition to leave its home at the Bayeux Museum. They say that major conservation issues have to be overcome first before any plans can be made for an overseas journey. Hyperallergic, January 19, 2018


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