Otto Greiner, The Dance, 1896, lithograph in red chine appliqué on wove paper. Purchased 1994. Collection of the National Gallery of Canada. Photo © NGC

The Symbolist Muse: A Selection of Prints from the National Gallery of Canada

January 20 to March 18, 2012
Opening Reception: Friday, January 27 at 8 p.m.

During the 1880s, some artists in Europe began exploring an inner vision. Their personal, philosophical work marked a staunch opposition to that of the Realist and Impressionist artists of the time, who focused on recording the exterior world. “Mystery,” “suggestion” and “dream” are terms that evoke the strange beauty of Symbolist art. The exhibition includes intriguing works by such renowned and influential artists as Paul Gauguin, Odilon Redon, Edvard Munch, Eugène Carrière and Jan Toorop. The Symbolist Muse consists of some 50 masterpieces from the permanent collection of the National Gallery of Canada.

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Brayers and Blisters: Inside a Printmaker’s Studio

Brayers and Blisters: Inside a Printmaker’s Studio

January 20 to March 18, 2012

Opening Reception: Friday, January 27 at 8 p.m.

With Brayers and Blisters, the Mendel Art Gallery presents an exploration of printmaking processes from plate to artist’s proof.

This intriguing look into a printmaker’s studio features a beautiful, custom-built printing press, woodblocks, etching plates, studio supplies, and other related paraphernalia. A series of free demonstrations and workshops led by local practitioners offers visitors hands-on experience and further insight into printmaking processes.

Brayers and Blisters is curated by Public Programs Assistant Troy Gronsdahl.

Jamelie Hassan, (Manuscript Page), 2005, colour photograph and neon light on panel. Collection of Museum London.

Jamelie Hassan: At the Far Edge of Words

January 20 to March 18, 2012
Opening Reception:
Friday, January 27 at 8 p.m.

Exhibition Talk/Tour: Sunday, January 29 at 12:30 p.m.
with Jamelie Hassan and Professor Lynne Bell

Since the 1970s, Jamelie Hassan’s work has been influenced by cultural politics, social activism, and her background as a Canadian born to immigrants from Lebanon. Jamelie Hassan: At the Far Edge of Words is the first exhibition surveying the 40-year career of this award-winning, London, Ontario artist. Featured are watercolours, photographs, ceramics, a billboard, and multi-media installations.

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Kai Chan, Aurora (detail), 1975,Cotton, nylon and wood, Collection of the artist Photo: Cheryl O'Brien.

Kai Chan: A Spider’s Logic

January 27 to March 18, 2012
Opening Reception: Friday, January 27 at 8 p.m.

Artist & Curators’ Talk/Tour: Friday, Janaury 27 at 7 p.m.

A Spider’s Logic brings together more than a dozen major works by Chinese-Canadian artist Kai Chan. Spanning 35 years, these works reveal the artist’s extraordinary conceptual and formal range, and illuminate his very personal manner of observing nature and the built environment.

Using everyday materials such as branches, thread, string, toothpicks, buttons and recycled plastic objects, and applying mixed-media techniques, he mixes, heaps, wraps, weaves, braids, layers, fastens, rolls, twists and stretches them to create fascinating and ingenious installations and sculptures.

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Benjamin Hettinga, Good Vibrations

Artists by Artists: Stacia Verigin and Benjamin Hettinga

Good Vibrations
January 27 to March 25, 2012

Good Vibrations features Benjamin Hettinga’s meticulous, hand-cut paper compositions, exploring pattern, colour, and line. His abiding interest in geometric design is informed by a wide variety of sources, from traditional textile patterns and ancient motifs to Op art. These intricate, labour-intensive paper works demonstrate Hettinga’s fascination with the handmade, an interest he shares with Stacia Verigin, his mentor. Verigin, who holds a Master’s Degree in sculpture from the University of Saskatchewan, hones her fabrication skills working as a contract prop builder for local television production companies. Her highly imaginative sculptures have delighted audiences across Canada.

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Left to Right: John Reeves, Marian McPartland (Pianist British), 1991. > John Reeves, Dizzy Gillespie (Trumpeter, Band Leader - U.S.), 1990. > John Reeves, Kei Akagi (Piano, Electric Keyboards - U.S.), 1990. > John Reeves, Billy Higgins (Drummer - U.S.), 1990.

Jazz: Photographs by John A. Reeves

June 24 to October 2, 2011

In 1997, the Mendel Art Gallery received a gift of 70 photographs by John A. Reeves. Born in Burlington, Ontario in 1938, Reeves is renowned as a photographer, writer and broadcaster. He became interested in photography while studying at the Ontario College of Art, from which he graduated in 1961. He then became a feature photographer for such magazines as Canadian Art, Maclean’s, Saturday Night and Jazz Report. Among the many exhibitions of his work are those at the Canadian Centre for Photography and the National Library of Canada in Ottawa; the Canadian Cultural Centre in Rome; and Harbourfront in Toronto. Jazz focuses on Reeves’ sensitive portraits of leading jazz musicians, including Dizzy Gillespie, Artie Shaw, Diana Krall and Oscar Peterson. Jazz is presented in partnership with the SaskTel Saskatchewan Jazz Festival, slated for June 24 to July 3 in Saskatoon. — Curated by Dan Ring, Curator Emeritus, Mendel Art Gallery.

Karla Griffin, Piano, 2010. Colour Photograph

Artists by Artists: Jennifer Crane and Karla Griffin

Coming and Going
September 30, 2011 to January 12, 2012

Coming and Going explores the ever-shifting relationships among people, places and objects, in connection with the notion of home as a construct of personal desire. Artists Jennifer Crane and Karla Griffin navigate both the private and public aspects of the domestic sphere in an attempt to capture the traces of human actions and experience. Focusing on empty interior spaces and abandoned household objects, these artists draw attention to the narrative and theatrical possibilities offered by their subject matter. Narrative is mainly evoked through an absence in the space or of the objects — as in a blank wall without pictures, or furniture without walls. Crane’s interiors reference the absent occupant while Griffin’s work points to the absence of a home and the actions of absent individuals.

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Lowrie Warrener: Northern Night (detail) ca. 1928, oil on canvas, Collection of the National Gallery of Canada, Gift of Rachel Warrener, Toronto, 1986.

Kathleen Munn and Lowrie Warrener: The Logic of Nature, the Romance of Space

September 30, 2011 to January 8, 2012

The work of Kathleen Munn and Lowrie Warrener represents some of the earliest abstract art in Canada as it first emerged during the 1920s and 30s. Munn, a New York-trained and Toronto-based artist, exhibited regularly from 1909 until the late 1930s. Sarnia-born Warrener also worked in Toronto during the 1920s and 30s; they both contributed paintings to the official Group of Seven exhibition held in 1928 and were included in that year’s influential Yearbook of the Arts compiled by renowned artist and writer Bertram Brooker.

This exhibition investigates these artists in relation to dominant artistic and philosophical movements of the period to provide a fuller, often alternative perspective on Canadian art. Munn’s great knowledge of theory led her to radically reinterpret traditional subjects such as religious and pastoral scenes into fractured, daring designs. She combined the mystical aspects of modernism with her own spiritual beliefs, culminating in her greatest series on the Passion of Christ. Warrener was a protégé of the Group of Seven, yet his landscape imagery is his own, projecting the lyrical stylization and bright cloisonnism of European art onto the Canadian wilderness. He also extended the search for ‘national’ cultural identity into the field of theatre, producing innovative stage designs and writing an avant-garde play with celebrated dramatist Herman Voaden.

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Jayce Salloum, map of the world (detail), 2000-2007. Tentest/cellutex/donnaconda boards, drawing with collage of photographs, objects & documents

Jayce Salloum: history of the present [selected works 1985-2009]

September 30, 2011 to January 8, 2012

The Mendel Art Gallery presents one of its most ambitions exhibitions to date, with Jayce Salloum: history of the present (selected works, 1985-2009), a coproduction of the Mendel Art Gallery with the Kamloops Art Gallery and the Confederation Centre Art Gallery in Charlottetown, PEI.

The show is a mid-career survey of the internationally recognized Canadian artist’s photo and video-based installation works, which explore identity, migration, and shifting borders and territories in the contemporary world.

Salloum pursues a varied career; he works as a curator and cultural activist, has founded artist collectives in Canada, the United States, and Lebanon, and practices as an artist at the intersection of text, video, installation and photographic work. The Lebanese-Canadian artist, whose grandparents immigrated to rural Saskatchewan in the 1930s, grew up in Kelowna and left home at 17 to travel and make art, a journey that led him across Canada, to Africa, and then to California. He is now based in Vancouver, but continues to travel constantly, making work and exhibiting his work all over the world.

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Michèle Mackasey: Cheryl Kemp and her Family (detail), 2010, 5ft h x 6.5ft w, Acrylic on linen

Michèle Mackasey: face à nous

September 30, 2011 to January 8, 2012

Saskatoon based artist, Michèle Mackasey has created a new body of work that puts the spotlight on single mothers. These large portrait paintings of local families capture the bond between mothers and their children, as well as point to the complex family dynamics where the father is literally out of the picture. In Mackasey’s life-size oil and acrylic paintings, the artist imbues her subjects with the dignity and stature that has been associated with portrait painting for centuries. Yet these portraits depict families, who continue to live on the margins, facing prejudice and economic hardship with mothers balancing the roles of sole provider and caregiver. Mackasey utilizes body language, facial expression and composition with great empathy in this moving and insightful series of paintings. 

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Betty Goodwin: Darkness and Memory

Betty Goodwin: Darkness and Memory

June 24 – September 18, 2011

Drawing from the permanent collection of the Musée d’art contemporain de Montréal an ensemble of 27 works by Betty Goodwin, this touring exhibition offers a critical journey into a unique and luminous body of work where an acute awareness of the human condition combines with the knowledge that pain, death and oblivion are also part of the unconsciousness.

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Franz Johnston, Aftermath (detail), 1930. Gouache on paperboard. Collection of the Mendel Art Gallery. Gift of the Mendel family 1965.

The Mendel Gift

June 24 – September 11, 2011

Saskatoon would lack much of its verve without the contributions of one of its citizens: Frederick Salomon Mendel. In 1940, he came to this city with his wife, Clare, and their two daughters, Johanna and Eva. He was a prosperous, 52-year-old businessman fleeing from Nazi Germany, and within months of his arrival, he opened the enterprise that would become Intercontinental Packers Limited. Twenty years later, while managing the fourth largest meat processing plant in Canada and Saskatoon’s biggest industry, Fred Mendel approached Mayor Sidney Buckwold, to initiate the creation of a public art gallery. With Mr. Mendel’s philanthropy and funding from the province and city, the Mendel Art Gallery and Civic Conservatory opened to an enthusiastic public on October 16, 1964.

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Courtney Milne, image from The Pool Project (detail), 2000-2010

Courtney Milne: The Pool Project

June 24 – September 18, 2011

Courtney Milne was one of Canada’s most recognized professional photographers, renowned worldwide for his images of landscape and nature. He made more than 350,000 exposures, photographing in 35 countries and on all seven continents. He wrote more than 180 illustrated articles for photographic magazines and produced numerous popular books of photography of the Canadian prairies, as well as several books of images of global sacred sites and spiritual landscapes. His best-selling 1991 book, The Sacred Earth, features a foreword by His Holiness the Dalai Lama.

The Pool Project is Milne’s first solo exhibition at the Mendel Art Gallery. This unique collaborative project brings together more than 40 of Milne’s stunning colour photographs of the surface of his outdoor swimming pool, captured over the course of a decade (2000-2010) with the spiritual musings and reflections of a broad array of local and international personalities. The Pool Project is both a celebration of Milne’s unique ability to capture the qualities of light, colour, and texture and an opportunity for visitors of all backgrounds to contemplate aspects of the spiritual through art. For more information on the project, visit

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Artists by Artists: Patrick Bulas and Jordan Schwab

Artists by Artists: Patrick Bulas and Jordan Schwab

Making a Good First Impression
June 24 – September 25, 2011

Making a Good First Impression is a spirited exploration of printmaking processes. Using unconventional approaches that range from etching with gunpowder to producing plates with a steamroller, master printmaker Patrick Bulas and recent MFA graduate, Jordan Schwab, take aim at a medium often fixated on process and technique. A selection of prints will be exhibited, accompanied by support material including sketches, plates and documentation of the various processes.

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Carole Epp, Idol hands (detail), 2011. Mid-fired white stoneware, underglaze, china paint.

Artists by Artists: Marsha Kennedy and Carole Epp

the politics of innocent dreams
April 15 to June 19, 2011

Carole Epp creates provocative ceramic sculptures that reference kitsch figurines, lowbrow art and consumer culture. These figurative tableaux explore human experience — death and love, hope and failure, family and social pressures — and seek to stimulate conversation, thought and action.

Epp lives and works in Saskatoon. She has exhibited her work locally, nationally and internationally and is editor of the popular ceramic arts blog, Musing About Mud. Her mentor, Marsha Kennedy, is an artist and educator based in Regina. Kennedy teaches painting and drawing at the University of Regina while maintaining an active studio practice.

Ruth Cuthand, Yellow Fever (detail), 2009. Beads and paint on suedeboard. Collection of the Mendel Art Gallery

RUTH CUTHAND: BACK TALK (Works 1983–2009)

RUTH CUTHAND: BACK TALK is a comprehensive, mid-career retrospective of one of Saskatchewan’s most significant contemporary artists. For over 30 years, this Saskatoon-based artist has been challenging mainstream perspectives on colonialism and the relationships between “settlers” and Natives in a practice marked by political invective, humour, and a deliberate crudeness of style. The exhibition brings together a comprehensive selection of artworks produced between 1983 and 2009.

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Karine Giboulo, Village Démocratie (Phase I) (detail), 2010, Polymere clay, acrylic, plexiglass and mixed materials.

Karine Giboulo and Olia Mishchenko: Habitaptation

April 15 to June 12, 2011

In Habitaptation, artists Karine Giboulo and Olia Mishchenko present new work examining the ways individuals interact with urban space. Whether these spaces are carefully planned or (d)evolve haphazardly, their humanity can be elusive, and their uses are difficult to predict. The artists draw attention to ideological concerns, gaps between vision and policy, and to the visceral realities of city life.

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Ashley Prigotzke-Beckett, Untitled (detail), acrylic and marker on paper. Mayfair Community School, Grade 3.

School Art 2011

April 15 to June 5, 2011
Public Reception: Sunday, April 17 at 2 p.m.

The annual exhibition School Art had been a Saskatoon favourite with Gallery visitors for nearly 40 years. It showcases the paintings, drawings, photographs, sculptures, and other works of art by more than 200 students in Saskatoon’s elementary and secondary schools. School Art delights audiences and pays tribute to Mendel Art Gallery founder Fred Mendel. It was Mendel’s passionate belief that art is for people of all ages and walks of life. The Gallery is proud to work closely with Saskatoon’s educators and to continue its commitment to art at the primary and secondary levels.

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Meghan Krauss, Hong Kong, 2010. In the Artists by Artists program

Artists by Artists: Ian Rawlinson and Meghan Krauss

The World Is Too Much With Us
January 21 to April 9, 2011

Meghan Krauss presents urban and landscape photographs reflecting her travels throughout North America, Australia, and Asia. The World Is Too Much With Us considers the human relationship to the natural world in the face of advanced urban development and subsequent environmental impact.

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Joseph Anderson, The Boys Encounter Aquatic Creatures Near the Ocean Floor (detail), 2010. In the exhibition, Wonderment


January 21 to April 3, 2011
curated by Sandra Fraser

WONDERMENT celebrates the role of fantasy in contemporary art. Together, Joseph Anderson (Saskatoon), Fiona Kinsella (Hamilton) and Joanne Lyons (Saskatoon) present a strange, imaginative world defined by the buoyancy of the inexplicable. The artists’ engaging works, including sculpture, installation, video and painting, blur boundaries between the real and the magical. Each artist explores the tensions individuals experience as they strive to understand the world around them, and the resulting mix of feelings —astonishment and apprehension, pleasure and disquiet.

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Berni Searle, Snow White, 2001. In the exhibition VARIATIONS


January 21 to April 3, 2011
curated by Jen Budney

The photo-based contemporary art in VARIATIONS examines changing social identities, states of being, and perception itself. The subjects in this dramatic collection range from “coloured” women in South Africa, to early 20th-century English criminals, to people living in the Riversdale area in Saskatoon. The global perspectives vary, yet Lee Henderson, Louise Noguchi and Berni Searle reveal common concerns: the importance of symbolism in contemporary life, the instability of identity, and the limitations of dualistic thinking. All three are fascinated by performance, particularly actions emphasizing repetition and endurance.

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Photograph attributed to Adolfo Farsari, Betto (groom), n.d. In the exhibition KOSHASHIN: The Hall Collection

KOSHASHIN: The Hall Collection of 19th Century Photographs of Japan

January 21 to April 3, 2011
Organized by the Art Gallery of Alberta

KOSHASHIN, Japanese for period photographs, presents a rare opportunity to view one of the world’s largest collections of early Japanese photography. There are more than 230 works in this exhibition, on loan from the personal collection of Edmontonian Arlene Hall. This was a private treasure until its debut at the Art Gallery of Alberta (AGA), which organized the exhibition in 2009.

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