Canada in Venice

November 20 – December 10, 2018
School of Art Gallery – Special Collections Gallery
Organized by Jamie Wright

Often referred to as the "Olympics of the Art World," the Venice Biennale is much more than a re-occurring art show. This epic, 123-year-old cultural institution is the only international visual arts exhibition to which the Canadian government has sent official representation every two years since 1952! This exhibition features a number of artworks from our collection by Canadian artists who have at sometime exhibited at this prestigious event.  Provoking reflections surrounding the political and economic nature of the art world, Canada in Venice offers a platform from which to identify the genres, mediums and personalities that have historically been selected to represent the nation.
Observing works by David Milne, Alfred Pellan, Bertram Charles Binning, Jean-Paul Riopelle, Jack Shadbolt, Harold Town, Graham Coughtry, Alex Colville, Yves Gaucher, Guido Molinari, Michael Snow, Greg Curnoe, Janet Cardiff and George Bures Miller, what can we learn about the artistic development of Canada? What does it mean for an artist or artwork to represent a nation? Is the Venice Biennale in fact a fair indication of global artistic moments of the past and future? And perhaps most importantly, who and what has been left out of this grand narrative?


Genevieve Farrell | Canada in Venice [pdf]

Alfred Pellan (1906-1988), Embranchement, 1973
silkscreen, 13/100 56 x 48.2 cm
Gift of Anna and Lyle Silverman

Michael Snow, Carla Bley (from the Toronto 20 Portfolio), 1965
serigraph, 31/100, 65.8 x 50.6 cm