Experience Art Through the Ages
Experience Art Through the Ages
Merely a fledgling, just seven months old, the Audain Art Museum has already welcomed more than 30,000 people through its doors to tour the extraordinary permanent collection of nearly 200 artworks from coastal British Columbia. While most ventures of this tender age are learning to crawl, the museum is leaping ahead, embracing both art aficionados and those with an appreciation for art, of all ages, in a dance spanning four centuries of art history.
More than 100 highly trained volunteer docents lead tours through the exquisite galleries featuring the artwork of Emily Carr, E.J. Hughes, Gordon Smith, Jack Shadbolt, Jeff Wall, Dana Claxton, Marianne Nicolson, Stan Douglas and many more.
The museum is humming with school programs, workshops for adults, family-friendly tours like the monthly Kids Konnect Tours and Family Studio Sundays, as well as guest-artist speakers. In addition, the Audain showcases three or more temporary exhibitions a year.
From Geisha to Diva:
The Kimono of Ichimaru focuses on the kimono and accoutrements of Ichimaru, one of Japan’s best-known geisha and singers through the mid-20th century. Geisha are traditional Japanese female entertainers skilled at music, dancing, poetry and the art of conversation, specifically for the enjoyment of wealthy men. From Geisha to Diva tells the life story of Ichimaru, her ambition to become one of the most skilled geisha, and her eventual rise to national stardom as a singer. Up close, the kimonos are fascinating, like robes of royalty, such is the quality of the silk textiles, the minute gold-thread embroidery, and the elegant patterns of the natural world. In partnership with the Art Gallery of Greater Victoria, and enhanced with gifts from Ms. Yoshi Karasawa and Mrs. Suzuki, the travelling exhibition
demonstrates the importance of geisha and how they became the conservators of traditional Japanese costume, music, song and dance through the ages. The exhibition is open until Jan. 9, 2017.
Contemporary Artist Films transforms the special exhibition space of the main floor into a series of film/video rooms showcasing the artists’ works. “This is very much an exhibition about the intersection of ideas and concepts related to the environment, isolation, and interaction with people,” says Darrin Martens, Gail and Stephen A. Jarislowsky chief curator of the museum and of this exhibit. Intersections features a slate of Canadian and international artists, including Matilda Aslizadeh, Patrick Bernatchez, Stan Douglas, Pascal Grandmaison and Marie-Claire Blais, Lisa Jackson, Fiona Tan and Althea Thauberger. The experimental and contemporary films and videos are between three and 40 minutes in length. Fiona Tan’s haunting short film Ghost Dwellings III depicts eerily peaceful scenes of the abandoned wrecks of homes in the aftermath of the earthquake and tsunami in Fukushima, Japan, while a Geiger counter carried by the filmmaker clicks ominously in the background. The film Lost in Time, by Patrick Bernatchez, intertwines two narratives in a landscape of ice and snow, in an endless time loop of life and death. “This is our first contemporary special exhibition,” Martens says, “and we’re really hoping this will resonate with a younger audience that is interested in the moving image as an art form in itself.” Visit Intersections: Contemporary Artist Films until Feb. 6, 2017.
In early 2017, Fred Herzog: Shadowlands
will feature the work of the Vancouver photographer, who is best known for his documentary/art street photography of working-class people from the 1950s and ’60s. “What’s intriguing about his images is they do speak to a larger culture,” Martens says. “Even though the streets are in Vancouver, they could be Chicago. They could be New York, or almost anywhere. There is a universality in his images that is quite unique.” One of the features of Herzog’s photography is his ability to incorporate light and dark within his composition, and how that adds to the narrative or picture. The museum is partnering with Equinox Gallery and Taschen Books for the exhibition, which runs from Jan. 20 to May 22, 2017.
Curated by Ellsworth Kelly from the Pierre and Tana Foundation Collection is a travelling exhibition, organized and circulated by the American Federation of Arts and the Mount Holyoke College Art Museum in collaboration with the Pierre and Tana Matisse Foundation. The exhibition features 45 drawings by Henri Matisse. They include a number of his finished drawings, some of his well-known portraits, and some of his unfinished drawings and quick sketches, many of which have seldom been exhibited. “The exhibition showcases the depth and breadth of the artist, how profound he was and how much he could actually say with a single line,” Martens says. Complementing the show is a suite of nine plant lithographs by the late Ellsworth Kelly called The Botanical Lithographs, a series of simplistic, yet magnificent line drawings of plants. Matisse Drawings will be displayed from Feb. 24 to May 22, 2017.
(Page 44 - Top Image) Geisha Portrait of Ichimaru, date unknown - Unknown photographer - Photograph - Dimensions variable Collection of the Art Gallery of Greater Victoria (Page 45 - Top Image) Fred Herzog Two Men in Fog, 1958 - Archival pigment print - Courtesy of Equinox Gallery, Vancouver © Fred Herzog, 2016 (Page 45 - Left Image) Henri Matisse Portrait of a Woman (Tête de femme), 1947 - Charcoal on paper - 47.9 x 31.4 cm The Pierre and Tana Matisse Foundation Collection - 410.204067