June 27 to September 14, 2014
Opening Reception: Friday, June 27 at 8 p.m.
Talk/Tour: Saturday, September 13 at 1 p.m. with curator Troy Gronsdahl
Canada has cultivated and maintained a strong symbolic connection with the northern landscape. The artistic production of Canada’s renowned early painters, the Group of Seven and their ilk, has both defined artistic practice at home and Canada abroad. As art historian John O’Brian observes in Wild Art History, “The land and its representations are knotted together, not unlike two other words with an affinity to landscape in contemporary thought — nation and nationalism.” The country as depicted by the progenitors of the Canadian landscape tradition is a pristine, untamed, and unpeopled place. A history of colonization and the development of the modern Canadian state are registered on countless paintings and postcards. Popular depictions of the landscape are telling: Canada is rich in natural beauty, abundant in resources, and open for business.
Over the course of William Perehudoff’s long career he produced paintings in a wide range of styles from small representational watercolours to the huge striped canvasses which are perhaps his best known work. In 1952 he began a 25 year long career as art director at Modern Press, a company owned by the Saskatchewan Wheat Pool, and publisher of the weekly Western Producer. In this provincially touring exhibition from the permanent collection of the Mendel Art Gallery, we present illustrations from two serial articles published by The Western Producer in 1955.
Saskatchewan-based artist Michèle Mackasey has created a new body of work that puts the spotlight on single mothers. In Mackasey’s life-size paintings, the artist imbues her subjects with the dignity and status associated for centuries with portrait painting. Yet these portraits depict families who continue to live on the margins, facing prejudice and economic hardship as the mothers balance the roles of sole provider and caregiver.
The Pool Project is an unique collaborative exhibition that brings together 40 of Courtney 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.
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.
A mid-career survey of this acclaimed Canadian artist’s photo- and video-based installations, the exhibition explores identity, migration, and shifting global territories. Curated by Jen Budney, the exhibition is a co-production of the Mendel Art Gallery, the Kamloops Art Gallery and the Confederation Centre Art Gallery in Charlottetown, PEI. Vancouver-based Salloum, whose grandparents emigrated from Lebanon to rural Saskatchewan in the 1930s, has exhibited his work extensively internationally for more than 20 years. His vast archive of photos, documents and souvenirs offers open-ended narratives and celebrates ephemeral beauty.