October 13, 2017

Art Scene: Self as subject

Vancouver Art Gallery welcomes the British Royal Collection’s array of artists’ self portraits across the centuries

By Shawn Conner

Vancouver Art Gallery

Portrait of the Artist brings together the Royal Collection’s impressive selection of paintings built over centuries by successive British monarchs, all depicting artist self-portraits, portraits of artists and artists at work. Encompassing 92 paintings, drawings, prints, photographs and sculptures, the exhibit is a survey of how artists have seen themselves and the role of the artist within society. It features world-renowned artists ranging from Renaissance masters such as Rembrandt, Peter Paul Rubens and Artemisia Gentileschi to contemporary ones including Lucien Freud and David Hockney.
In addition, the complementary show Carol Sawyer: The Natalie Brettschneider Archive reconstructs the life and work of the genre-defying fictional artist Brettschneider. Sawyer’s ongoing project provides a contemporary perspective on the artist as subject.
Also this season, the VAG is presenting True Nordic: How Scandinavia Influenced Design in Canada. True Nordic spans seven decades and looks at the introduction of Scandinavian design to Canada and the significant influence of Scandinavian craft and industrial design on the development of Canadian culture. Featured designers include Karen Bulow, Kjeld and Erica Deichmann, Thor Hansen, Niels Bendtsen, molo and Bocci, among many others.
Portrait of the Artist: An Exhibition from the Royal Collection and Carol Sawyer: The Natalie Brettschneider Archive, Oct. 28 to Feb. 4
True Nordic: How Scandinavia Influenced Design in Canada, Oct. 28 to Jan 28
750 Hornby St., 604-662-4700
vanartgallery.bc.ca

Richmond Art Gallery

The group exhibit Eternal Return presents work by five Vancouver-based artists: Barb Choit, Kevin Day, Lucien Durey, Alanna Ho and Anchi Lin. Each artist has selected artifacts from the Richmond Museum’s Migration Collection and developed works in response to their selected historical objects. The resulting work covers a diverse range of media including performance, video, photography, sound and sculpture. In her photo montage Richmond Reconstructions, for example, Choit references the visual language of ancient Pompeii frescos to create a new still life.
Eternal Return runs until Nov. 19
Richmond Cultural Centre
7700 Minoru Gate, 604-247-8300
gallery@richmond.ca

South Main Gallery

Former illustrator Steve Mennie likes to work with acrylics and oils in what he calls a high realist style “to perhaps reveal the essential limitedness of our knowledge by constructing ‘real’ and banal scenes or contexts in a very cool and detached manner.” He has also painted landscapes in a more abstract manner.
Steve Mennie—Look Both Ways, Oct. 13 to 31 (opening reception Oct. 13)
South Main Gallery
279 E. 6th Ave, 604-565-5622
southmaingallery.com

Kurbatoff Gallery

In his paintings, Andy Wooldridge aims to give a viewer a glimpse into a grand theatrical production. He deliberately deconstructs conventional notions of painting to accentuate the theatrical aspects of his work. Through a playful use of perspective, Wooldridge references how theatre backgrounds are sometimes awkwardly placed in the stage, giving them the illusion that doors and walls are tilting in all directions without regards of perspective. Shadows and highlights are juxtaposed by the flat rendering of the paint. The result gives the observer an omniscient POV into the play of his work.
Andy Wooldridge, Repeat Motifs, Oct. 19 to Nov. 2
2435 Granville St., 604-736-5444
kurbatoffgallery.com

 

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