Jul 152017

New Canadian & Indigenous Galleries
National Gallery of Canada
Photo: Ann Cameron

The National Gallery of Canada in Ottawa has replaced its former historical Canadian art galleries with a newly created space and a new presentation of the history of art in Canada. Works by Indigenous peoples are a part of the dialogue. The most stunning moment is the juxtaposition of the abstract and minimalist painters of the 1960’s with strong and abstracted sculptures of the Inuit artists who first came to an eager southern market at that time.

Canadian and Indigenous Art: From Time Immemorial to 1967 is in a more open space: gallery walls were removed and some re-situated, ceilings were opened, floors changed. The Garden Court has also been renewed with a design by the original landscape architect Cornelia Hahn Oberlander, who worked jointly with Vancouver landscape architects Enns Gauthier.

Many of the historical works by indigenous peoples, chosen in consultation with an Indigenous advisory committee, were borrowed from other collections. Light-sensitive pieces will be replaced by others over time. The Gallery has changed its collection policy to include both contemporary and traditional indigenous work.

For a critic’s take on the project, see https://www.theglobeandmail.com/arts/art-and-architecture/national-gallery-of-canada-exhibit-showcases-an-unbroken-indigenous-arthistory/article35602063/

Curator Christine Lalonde and Michael Dangeli
at the NGC in Ottawa
Photo: Ann Cameron

Jul 152017

Meghann O’Brien at the Bill Reid Gallery
Photo: Meghann O’Brien

The Bill Reid Gallery in Vancouver is “renewing material in the exhibition of O’Brien’s weaving at the Gallery. O’Brien’s most recent and innovative work is included in the display.

The main show at the BRG, besides the excellent presentation of Bill Reid’s work, is Xi Xanya Dzam – Those who are amazing at making things, which runs from April 5 to September 4, 2017. It presents some of British Columbia’s most celebrated First Nations artists.


Jul 152017

Delores Churchill, Ravens Tail Tunic
Schack Art Center, Everett WA

Extraordinary Basketry, Textiles and Sculptures from N.W. Collections is an exhibition of traditional and contemporary work collected by two prominent Northwest coast art families, as well as new work by Haida weaver Lisa Telford. It is being displayed at the Schack Art Center in Everett Washington, just over two hour’s drive south of Vancouver. The show continues until July 29, 2017.

A related exhibition Interwoven Dialogues: The Architecture of Basketry, photographs by Susan Gans of indigenous basketry from the Everett Museum of History Collection will run At the Schack Center until August 27, 2017.

For more, see http://www.schack.org/

Jul 152017

Apprentices Working in Massett
Photo: From Haida Laas, Council of the Haida Nation

A magnificent 51-foot pole was raised in Hiellen HG on June 21, 2017. See The Beat (April 2017).

“We are recreating a pole from the 1820’s, that stood on Haida Gwaii for 100 years and then stood in Prince Rupert for 50 years before returning back home on Haida Gwaii to be stored with 7idansuu Jim Hart,” said Kilthguulans, artist Christian White, who headed a team of apprentices and journeymen. For more on the ceremony, see


Also on the Haida Gwaii, the Fourth Annual Art Auction & Dance Fundraiser will be held in Skidegate on Saturday, September 30. Tickets can be purchased at the Haida Gwaii Museum.


Jul 152017

Tarah Hogue
Photo: Amanda Strong

The Vancouver Art Gallery has appointed former grunt gallery curator Tarah Hogue as its first senior curatorial fellow focussing on Indigenous Art. She will start work in September.

Hogue was born in Red Deer AB and holds a bachelor of art history degree from Queen’s University as well as a master of art history degree in critical curatorial studies from UBC. She’s been curator at the grunt since 2014 and was Tarah Hogue was the 2016 Audain Aboriginal Curatorial Fellow at the Art Gallery of Greater Victoria. http://www.vanartgallery.bc.ca/media_room/pdf/VAG_RLS_TarahHogue.pdf

Jul 152017

Heiltsuk Artist, Articulated Owl Mask, c.1830-50
Promised Gift, Audain Collection

The Audain Art Museum in Whistler has invited Curator Emeritus (MOA) Bill McLennan to meet with gallery visitors for an afternoon discussion of the Audain’s historical First Nations Collection, on July 22, 2017 at 2 pm.