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Gordon Bennett, Be Polite
Organized and circulated by IMA Brisbane
Levy and Tomlinson Galleries | January 11 – May 12, 2018
CURATORS’ TALK by Aileen Burns and Johan Lundh from the Institute of Modern Art, Brisbane, Australia: Thursday, January 11, 12:30 pm
OPENING RECEPTION: Thursday, January 11, 6 – 8 pm
Drawn from the Estate of Gordon Bennett, the exhibition presents a selection of works on paper including drawing, painting, watercolour, poetry, and essays from the early 1990s through to the early 2000s. Though rarely seen in exhibition contexts, Bennett’s drawing and script form the foundation of his practice. Paper is the site where imagery, words and ideas often found their first expression before being combined into the large-scale conceptual paintings for which Bennett is known. Despite their intimate scale, works in Be Polite embrace rich layers of Western and Australian Indigenous art history and contemporary politics, a direction Bennett played a leading role in developing throughout the 1980s and continued to explore in his successful career. As noted by the Contemporary Art Gallery, Vancouver, in their press release for their presentation of Be Polite in summer 2017, “the shared colonial histories with Canada and in particular the plight of local First Nations are set in dialogue across continents. Issues, events and histories are given compelling voice in these provocative and often disturbing images.” In his 1996 text “The Manifest Toe” Gordon Bennett wrote:
I abhor violence, and I have little compulsion to glorify it in any case, so I thought of the depiction of violence as a way to disturb firstly the complacent acceptance of Australia’s sanitized history, and secondly, through the shock of that disturbance, to “jolt” the spectator “out of accustomed ways of perceiving the world” and perhaps foster empathy and understanding of contemporary issues that affect all of us as human beings.
Gordon Bennett (1955–2014) was of Aboriginal and Anglo-Celtic descent and one of Australia’s most visionary and critical artists. He has been the subject of major solo presentations and retrospectives at Ikon Gallery, Birmingham (touring, Europe), 1999–2000, Griffith University, Brisbane (touring, Australia), 2004–2005, and the National Gallery of Victoria, Melbourne (touring, Australia), 2007–2009. International recognition and attention for Bennett’s work has been growing with his inclusion in the acclaimed dOCUMENTA (13) in Kassel in 2012, and the 8th Berlin Biennale in 2014.
Gordon Bennett, Be Polite is organized and circulated by the IMA, Brisbane where it was first presented in October 2015 and toured to the Perth Institute of Contemporary Arts in 2016. Contemporary Art Gallery, Vancouver, and McMaster Museum of Art, Hamilton are the sole Canadian exhibition partners. The exhibition is supported by the Queensland Government through Arts Queensland, Australia Council for the Arts, Ministry of Communications and the Arts through Visions of Australia, The Estate of Gordon Bennett, Milani Gallery, and Sutton Gallery.
Image: Gordon Bennett, Notes to Basquiat: Boogie Man, 1998, acrylic on paper, 120 × 80 cm. Collection: The Estate of Gordon Bennett, Brisbane. Photography: Carl Warner © The Estate of Gordon Bennett.
TH&B, a creative partnership of Hamilton-based artists Simon Frank, Dave Hind, Ivan Jurakic and Tor Lukasik-Foss, have produced a new work of art for the McMaster Museum of Art’s Artist Garden. The installation is titled Basin and its foundation is a metal structure with forms of the Great Lakes on it. The artists will add a mix of plants to this to reflect contrasting elements of the geography that we share and occupy.
“Our plan is for the Great Lakes billboard to function as a trellis. Over two seasons we essentially want to see it grown over and integrated into the garden site as if it had always been there—a modern ruin,” says Ivan Jurakic.
April 5 – 28, 2018
Guest Curator: Paul Cvetich
Graduating McMaster BFA Student Exhibition (aka SUMMA 2018)
ARTIST TALKS: Wednesday, April 11, 12 noon
RECEPTION: Due to #onstorm last weekend, McMaster's Graduating BFA student celebrations have been rescheduled. Join us Saturday, April 21 for exhibition visits at the Museum from 1-2:30 pm followed by Reception & Awards in Togo Salmon Hall Flex Studio 2:30-4 pm.
D. Clarke Blake, Emerald Bruce, Ruth Cioban, Sabryna Correa, Colline Do, Amanda Dreise, Emily Gaudet, Dina Hamed, Emily Hamel, Kai Jacobs, Clara Laratta, Priscilla Loo, Tiffany Mulholland, Abby Nicholson, Sheetal Prasad, Sarah Sproule, Chantelle Stringle, Christina Ugge
Over the past four years, the Class of 2018 have spent many long hours working together in the Fitzhenry Studios, learning new techniques, refining skills across a wide range of media, and preparing for the art world outside of an academic context. The SUMMA exhibition is the culmination of that hard work. It is an opportunity for the emerging artists to publicly showcase their art and celebrate a significant milestone.
Flux, the exhibition title, represents the continuous change, development, and growth that the students experienced during their time at McMaster University.
PREVIEW: For each week leading up to the exhibition opening at the Museum, @mcmastersumma2018 will be taken over by two artists to showcase their work and see what they are up to in the studio.
shining light on the Native Indian/Inuit Photographers’ Association, 1985 – 1992
January 2 – March 24, 2018
Curated by Rhéanne Chartrand
Featuring works by founding NIIPA members:
Simon Brascoupe, Dorothy Chocolate, Rick Hill, Martin Akwiranoron Loft, Tim Johnson, James (Jimmy) Manning, Yvonne Maracle, Murray McKenzie, Brenda Mitten, Shelley Niro, Greg Staats, Jeff Thomas and many more.
OPENING RECEPTION: Thursday, January 11, 6 – 8 pm
PANEL DISCUSSION: Thursday, February 8, 6 – 8 pm. Details tba
In 1985, a group of Indigenous image-makers came together to form the Native Indian/Inuit Photographers’ Association, or NIIPA, with the core objective to promote a positive, realistic and contemporary image of Indigenous peoples through the medium of photography. They felt that, for far too long, Indigenous peoples had been portrayed through someone else’s lens, and that it was time they took control of the image in order to contest and demystify stereotypical representations of Indigenous peoples.
As a member-based organization, NIIPA played a significant role in training and advocacy for Indigenous photographers. Aside from the Society of Canadian Artists of Native Ancestry (S.C.A.N.A.), which actually incorporated the same year as NIIPA, the organization provided technical training and networking opportunities for Indigenous photographers at a time when there were few, if any, supports for Indigenous image-makers. Photography was still a relatively new medium of artistic expression in the mid 80s, and few institutions were actively collecting or exhibiting photography, much less photography by Indigenous artists. NIIPA filled a much-needed gap by providing a network and platform for Indigenous photographers to show their work and support each other’s art practice.
NIIPA’s founding demonstrates that Indigenous artists are equally adept at adapting to and making use of new technologies to advance Indigenous ways of seeing the world. The photographs presented in #nofilterneeded are derived from one or more of NIIPA’s early, self-produced exhibitions, and provide an unfiltered view into the interests and concerns of beautiful, resilient and thriving peoples.
#nofilterneeded shines much needed light on a significant moment in Indigenous art history by paying respects to the founding members of NIIPA and celebrating the momentum of the organization’s early years.
The exhibition will consist of 30-40 framed photographs, mostly black and white, of varying dimensions. The vast majority of the photographs will come from the Indigenous Art Centre at Indigenous and Northern Affairs Canada. Additional photographs will come from private collection and/or collection of the artist.
Susan Schelle: Selected Works
January 2 – March 24, 2018
Guest Curator: Ana Barajas
Sherman Gallery, Level 2
OPENING RECEPTION: Thursday, January 11, 6 - 8 pm
ARTIST & CURATOR’S TALK: Wednesday, March 7, 12:30 pm
Susan Schelle, a Hamilton native, has been making art since 1976. Practicing over decades has given her the opportunity to revisit familiar themes setting up a dialogue between works and often re-working elements over time. This exhibition, and its upcoming companion at Gallery Stratford, serves as a resting perch from which to survey a working life embedded in visual thinking. The continuity of ideas point to an open-ended search for the location of the self within an environment that is at times ominous.
The element of water is at the center of Schelle’s explorations. It appears in many forms and states, but it always affects the position of the viewer. Infinitely relatable, the concept of water weaves in and out of this selection of works and posits questions about our relationship to it, our usage and misuse, and our subjugation to its force. The image of the physical body, often absent from the work, is hinted to be a peripheral witness, both rooted in the moment and detached from its referent.
Susan Schelle: Selected Works and celebrates a shift in the artists’ practice after twenty years as art educator; while recognizing the methodology of an artist deeply concerned with environmental phenomenology and its effects on the human environment.
Susan Schelle was born in Hamilton, Ontario, and currently lives and works in Toronto. She was an Associate Professor Emeritus in Visual Studies, J.H. Daniels Faculty, University of Toronto. Working with sculpture and photography, Schelle is interested in the "manipulation of the familiar: images that deal with the phenomenon of the physical world and the customs of a particular time and place." She has completed a number of public art commissions, notably salmon run The Rogers Center Toronto. passage York University Toronto and laws of nature Court House Square Park, Toronto, Ont. She has shown both nationally and internationally including The Cenci Gallery, Rome, Italy and The Freedman Gallery Albright College, Reading Pennsylvania. Her work resides in the collections of Air Canada, The Art Gallery of Ontario, The Art Gallery of Hamilton, McMaster Museum of Art, The Winnipeg Art Gallery, The Vancouver Art Gallery, and The National Gallery of Canada. In addition to her own work, Schelle has collaborated with Mark Gomes on several public commissions, most recently jetstream at Terminal One, Pearson International Airport, Toronto.
Born in Mexico City, Mexico, Ana Barajas holds a BFA from OCAD University in Sculpture/Installation. She received a MVA, Curatorial and a MA, Modern Art History from the University of Toronto. Barajas is Director of YYZ Artists’ Outlet, a non-profit artist-run centre.
Image: Susan Schelle, flood (detail), video, 2015
The Herman Levy Legacy
A Cultivating Journey: The Herman H. Levy Legacy
1 September – 9 December, 2017
This exhibition examines and celebrates the collection of significant European historical and modern art donated to the McMaster Museum of Art by Hamilton businessman Dr. Herman H. Levy, O.B.E. in 1984. Featured are paintings by Claude Monet, Gustave Caillebotte, Gustave Courbet, Camille Pissarro, Chaim Soutine, J.M.W. Turner, Vincent van Gogh and many more.
RECEPTION: Thursday, September 14 from 6 - 8 PM
CURATOR’S TALK by Ihor Holubizky: Tuesday October 24, 12:30 – 1:20 pm
TALK | Cultivating Collections: Thursday November 23, 6 – 8 pm
by Tobi Bruce (Director, Collections & Exhibitions, Art Gallery of Hamilton) and
Ihor Holubizky (Senior Curator, McMaster Museum of Art)
Image: Claude Monet, Waterloo Bridge, Effet de Soleil, 1903, Oil on canvas, Collection of McMaster Museum of Art, Gift of Herman Levy, Esq., O.B.E., 1984
This touring exhibition, including a forthcoming publication, is generously supported by the Museums Assistance Program, Canadian Heritage.
Simon Glass: The Ten Commandments / Prohibited Weapons and The Thirteen Attributes of God
17 August – 2 December 2017
An exhibition of Simon Glass’s photo-hybrid series The Ten Commandments/Prohibited Weapons recently donated to the McMaster Museum of Art (a 2016 gift) and his series, The Thirteen Attributes of God, from the Art Gallery of Hamilton collection.
Simon Glass is an artist and educator based in Toronto. In his artistic practice, archival and original photographic imagery is combined with mystical, biblical and liturgical Hebrew.
Public Reception: Thursday, September 14 from 6 - 8 PM
Artist Talk: Thursday September 28, 12:30 – 1:20 pm
Image: Installation view of The Ten Commandments / Prohibited Weapons suite, 2005. Courtesy of the artist
The Power & Discontents of Artworld Analogies
Struck by Likening: The Power & Discontents of Artworld Analogies
19 August – 2 December 2017
Guest curator: Mark A. Cheetham
PUBLIC RECEPTION: Thursday, September 14 from 6 - 8 PM
CURATOR’s TALK - Getting Some Distance on Likening: Wednesday October 4, 12:30 – 1:20 pm
Struck by Likening explores commonplace declarations such as “Tom Thomson is the Van Gogh of Canada” and Norval Morrisseau is “the Picasso of the North” and the issues raised by such comparisons. These include national aspiration, genius, gender, anachronism, inter-media comparison, humour, and cultural appropriation.
Works of art in the exhibition are drawn from the historical, modern and contemporary collection of the McMaster Museum of Art, and loans from the Art Gallery of Hamilton, the Art Museum at the University of Toronto, Museum London and the Corkin Gallery, Toronto.
Professor Cheetham gratefully acknowledges the research support of the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada.
Image: Tom Thomson (Canadian 1877 – 1917) The Birch Grove, Autumn 1915–16, oil on canvas, Art Gallery of Hamilton, Gift of Roy Cole in memory of his parents, Matthew and Annie Bell Gilmore
Liss Platt: a CONSTANT decade
4 May – 19 August 2017
This exhibition is a “retrospective” of Liss Platt’s Constant photographic series and related videoworks, 2006 - 2016.
Liss Platt brings elements of the everyday, along with personal and autobiographical content, into a conceptual art practice. The particular landscape represented in the Constant series is a place she has been photographing for over ten years. She is interested in the process of sustained looking, particularly at something that is familiar, and what occurs through an accumulation of images. She is also intrigued by the tension between what changes in the scene and what stays the same.
Liss Platt is a mid-career media artist and an Associate Professor in the Department of Communication Studies and Multimedia at McMaster University. Her works have been shown nationally and internationally. She is also a co-member of the “Shake-n’-Make” project with Hamilton-based writer and maker Claudia B. Manley. Liss Platt is represented by MKG127 in Toronto.
ARTIST’S TALK & RECEPTION:
at b Contemporary gallery, 226 James St North, Hamilton
Sunday, June 4, 2017 from 2 - 4 pm
Liss Platt’s formal presentation, centred on her Constant series, will begin at 2:30 pm. Join us, meet the artist and enjoy light refreshments.
MMA in the Community Event
NEW! Watch the video of Liss Platt's Talk
Image: Liss Platt, Constant: Vertical, 2012, C-Print, edition of 5, 2012. Courtesy of MKG127 in Toronto.
8 June – 19 August 2017
Curator: Rhéanne Chartrand, Aboriginal Curatorial Resident, MMA
Coyote School presents contemporary works by eight mid-career Indigenous artists who acknowledge the influence of senior Indigenous artists on the development of their own artistic practice.
Bear Witness aka EhrenThomas
Opening Reception: Thursday, June 8, 6 - 8 pm
6:30 - Opening Remarks by Elders and Curator
7:00 - Musical Performance by acclaimed, Indigenous composer and vocal artist Jeremy Dutcher. A classically trained operatic tenor, Dutcher blends his Wolastoq First Nation roots into the music he creates.
image: Meryl McMaster, Time’s Gravity (detail), 2015, Archival pigment print on watercolour paper, edition 3 of 3, 76.2 cm x 114.3 cm. Collection of the Doris McCarthy Gallery, University of Toronto Scarborough
John Hansler: a life collecting
18 May – 5 August 2017
John Hansler graduated from McMaster University in 1956 and began collecting art the following year. In 2016, he offered his entire collection of nearly 100 works to the McMaster Museum of Art. This exhibition presents selections from his generous gift, focusing on his primary interest in post-1950 Canadian art and reflecting his enthusiasm for and support of artists he collected in depth.
Included in the exhibition are works by Walter Bachinski, Paul-Émile Borduas, Ulysee Comtois, David Craven, L.L. FitzGerald, John Hartman, Harold Klunder, J.W.G (Jock) MacDonald, Kazuo Nakamura, Harold Town, and Tony Urquhart.
photo: Kazuo Nakamura, Central Seven, C. 1961. Oil on canvas. Gift of John Hansler
Ann Kipling and Takao Tanabe
18 May – 5 August 2017
Ann Kipling and Takao Tanabe are senior British Columbia based artists who have made substantial contributions to the visual arts in Canada.
This exhibition presents works by the two artists recently gifted to the McMaster Museum of Art. It includes sixteen Ann Kipling drawings and etchings, donated by Toronto collector Christopher Varley in 2014, and six Takao Tanabe works on paper, donated by the artist in 2015. The latter were included in the retrospective of Tanabe’s work presented at the Museum in 2012.