YOU ARE HERE: KIM DORLAND AND THE
RETURN TO PAINTING
Organized by the McMichael Canadian Art Collection and curated by Katerina Atanassova
October 26, 2013 to January 5, 2014
Galleries 9, 10, 11, 12, 14
Drawing inspiration from a century old tradition of landscape painting, initiated by Tom Thomson and the members of the Group of Seven, Toronto-based artist Kim Dorland will be showing his latest work as a culmination of his artist-in-residence project at the McMichael Canadian Art Collection. Curated by McMichael's Chief Curator, Katerina Atanassova, the exhibition will explore Dorland's painterly approach to nature and welcome the inclusion of works by Tom Thomson, David Milne, Frederick Varley and others from the McMichael Collection.
Image: Kim Dorland, Untitled (Painter in a Canoe), 2013, oil and acrylic on jute over wood panel, 48 x 60 in., The Bailey Collection
KARINE GIBOULO'S SMALL STRANGE WORLD(S)
Organized by the McMichael Canadian Art Collection and curated by Sharona Adamowicz-Clements
September 12, 2013 to January 26, 2014
Galleries 5, 6, 7
Montreal-based artist Karine Giboulo has been creating miniature dioramas and large scale installations populated by doll-like figures that tell stories about key issues such as environmentalism, consumerism, globalization, cultural identity and the cause and effect of the contemporary human condition. Giboulo’s oeuvre finds its strength in its ability to entertain and educate at the same time. Marrying comedy with tragedy, and reality with fantasy, her work is full of childlike fun and whimsy, while also carrying strong messaging and critical commentary about important matters of the day. The exhibition is organized by the McMichael Canadian Art Collection and will present approximately fifty art works by the artist, many of which are major projects that she has produced over the last decade. Seen together for the first time, the exhibition will also include recent work specifically developed for the show that will be unveiled at the gallery.
Image: Karine Giboulo (b. 1980), The Man Who Saw the Bear Who Saw the Man (detail), 2006, polymer clay, acrylic paint, plexiglass and mixed media, Outside Diameter: 86.4 cm, Collection Majudia
The Group of Seven and Tom Thomson
The Toronto-based Group of Seven held their first exhibition in 1920 with the intention of promoting a uniquely Canadian art through subject matter and innovation in style. The original seven members – J.E.H. MacDonald, Lawren S. Harris, A.Y. Jackson, Arthur Lismer, Frederick Varley, Frank H. Johnston, and Franklin Carmichael – would later be joined by three additional artists who were invited to become part of the Group prior to its evolvement into the Canadian Group of Painters in 1933. Johnston left after the first Group show and was replaced by A.J. Casson, followed by the inclusion of Edwin Holgate from Montreal and L.L. FitzGerald from Winnipeg. Tom Thomson was a close associate of the original seven artists. His name has become synonymous with the Group although he could not become a member due to his sudden and premature death in 1917, only three years prior to the Group’s formation.
Since their inception, the Group of Seven and Thomson gradually became the
predominant national school of Canadian art embracing the modern era in art of the
early part of the twentieth century. The artists largely focused on representing the
Canadian landscape as a symbol of national pride and cultural identity. The Canadian
land also provided the means by which to experiment in techniques and create a new
formal language that would be distinctively Canadian.
A selection of works by the Group of Seven that provides an overview of their travels travels to Western Canada and the Arctic.
"Art movements come and go. When one becomes stabilized it is by-passed by younger and more vigorous groups. In some cases new movements work a revolution in art, as did the French Impressionists and Post-Impressionists. Others are important only to the countries that gave them birth.
The Group of Seven ranks with such local movements. It is hard now to believe that years ago we who were members of it were regarded as radicals. We were revolutionaries only in that we expected an art movement to develop in our country at a time when most Canadians were indifferent to any form of art, and because we attempted to paint objectively the kind of country that comprises most of Canada. The majority of Canadians, were shocked by our efforts, yet we did create something in the field of painting that was distinctively our own." –A.Y. Jackson
A.Y. Jackson, A Painter’s Country: The Autobiography of A.Y. Jackson (Toronto: Clarke, Irwin & Company Limited) 1958
The traditional Inuit …established a clear distinction between themselves, the “persons” (this is what the word “Inuit means)and the other …creatures with which they were in contact: the spirits (tuurngait, ijiqqat, etc.), the Indians (allait or itqilgit), the Europeans (qallunaat, etc.) (Dorais 1988)
Many Inuit artists have used their art to reflect on their cultural experiences by providing visual narratives that describe the challenges of living and surviving in the North. This current selection of works reveals not only aspects of the material culture related to the traditional life of the Inuit, but also the spiritual relationship that the people maintain with their environment through their stories and legends.
Stories can define a place and people. They provide the “social memory” associated with a place and offer a sense of collective experience. Stories mythologize a region while shaping an awareness of the cultural identity which helps to bind a people. The historic values of the Inuit as well as their beliefs about the land and their relationship to nature are revealed in their traditional stories which focus on cultural heroes, the role of the shaman, and tales of Sedna and other spirits.
Image: Joe Talirunili, (1893?–1976) The Migration, 1976, stone and sealskin with wood,
Overall: 32.5 x 42 x 23 cm, Purchase 1980
Dialogue and Divergence: Art of the Northwest Coast
Dialogue and Divergence: Art of the Northwest Coast explores relationships between First Nations and non-First Nations cultures of British Columbia. The exhibition makes this history the basis for engaging the McMichael Canadian Art Collection’s holdings.
The project is organised into four thematic areas that present different aspects of cultural production. Emily Carr and First Nations Imagery and Beautiful British Columbia: Marketing the Coast through First Nations Culture address the use of First Nations imagery both in the popular culture of tourism and in the work of modern painters, engaging ideas of dialogue and appropriation. Works by Emily Carr depicting First Nations settlements and monumental carvings, the argillite poles of the Haida master carver Charles Edenshaw, and mass-produced tourist material featuring First Nations and pseudo-First Nations imagery emphasise an awkwardly shared space of exchange, misunderstanding, and misrepresentation. Within the sections titled Masks of the North.
Image: Emily Carr (1871 - 1945), Old Tree at Dusk, 1932
oil on canvas, 112 x 68.5 cm, Gift of Colonel R.S. McLaughlin, McMichael Canadian Art Collection
Legends: Norval Morrisseau and Anishinabek "Woodland School" Artists
First Nations artist Norval Morrisseau is celebrated for establishing a style of art that became known as the Woodland School. Morrisseau’s decision to produce his art on canvas and paper marked a shift to European-influenced traditions. His painted compositions are characterized by an intuitive use of bright, pure colour shapes contained within black form lines; a deliberate attempt to communicate his beliefs with the viewer using colour. At the same time, other First Nations artists were similarly motivated in their desire to communicate the values of their culture, and subsequent generations of artists continue to do so through the creation of unique and significant art forms.
Image: Norval Morrisseau (1931-2007), Shaman and Disciples, 1979, acrylic on canvas
180.5 x 211.5 cm, Purchase 1979, McMichael Canadian Art Collection, 1979.34.7
The Founders' Story
A Tribute to the Legacy of Robert and Signe McMichael
Don’t miss this display of archival photographs and accompanying texts recounting the history of the McMichael from its early beginnings in the home of Robert and Signe McMichael through the donation to the Province in 1965, until the Founders’ retirement in 1981.
Learn more about our Founders’ passion for collecting and their mutual vision – a vision that enabled the creation of a unique public art gallery, the McMichael Canadian Art Collection.
To view The Founders’ Story visit the ramp leading from Gallery 1 to the restaurant.
Image: Robert McMichael signing the Gift Agreement, with Premier John Robarts and Signe McMichael, November 18th, 1965, Photo by the Ontario Department of Tourism and Information