McMichael Gallery Visit

I visited the McMichael Gallery and saw multiple art pieces taking the advantage of texture, light and even sound. The exhibition that caught my eye was called The Art of Canada: Director’s Cut and it lasted from December 9, 2017 to November 18, 2019. The paintings chosen were from different artists by the gallery’s executive director Ian Dejardin. The exhibition isn’t grouped together but the different artworks have been placed throughout the gallery belonging with their respective categories. I didn’t even know that these collected pieces were even an exhibition until I investigated it online. I can only say that the collection only extended from the beginning of the gallery to the third room. The first room belonged to the Group of Seven which was just a straight hallway. October Gold by Franklin Carmichael was placed there. The Inuit and First Nation art was next featuring Norval Morrisseau’s Thunderbird with Inner Spirit; the room was blacker than the other rooms and had carved models in glass boxes. The third room had many contemporary artists such as Alex Colville’s Milk Truck and Interior at Night by Christiane Pflug. This was different than the rest of the rooms as it wasn’t just a hallway but had benches and walls in the middle of the room. The arts mentioned through the three rooms are part of The Art of Canada.

In my opinion, the art chosen for this exhibition is very appealing to look at even though it is a small collection. All pieces are different enough to work independently but together they complement each other using both themes of civilization and nature. Milk Truck is a painting involving a boy on a truck with these very cool colours and grainy wood-like textures (a signature of Alex Colville’s). It is a very balanced art piece as most of the vibrancy is focused near the truck to have our eyes look at it first. I thought that piece would be my favourite because Alex Colville is the more popular artist, but I like Thunderbird with Inner Spirit more. It is a bird on a giant canvas with saturated primary and secondary colours. It is about the legends told by Morrisseau’s people which represents transformation by having a face inside the bird. One of the security guards told me about the work and how Morrisseau never mixed his paintings, liking the saturations of the colours. I really relate to the artist that way because I don’t like mixing colours either and prefer my colour palette to be weird as his. If I were to choose an art that I like visually, it would be Interior at Night as the entire composition seems creepy. The top of the window at first looks like outside but it’s really a reflection. I interpret it as all the little girl saw was the world inside the room, when she looks at the window, she can only see her reflection. When the window finally opens there is a whole new world out there with its creepy atmosphere. I personally enjoyed the choice of artworks to form the exhibition. Even though I wish they were all grouped together, I am aware that it wouldn’t be organized. Most of the Group of Seven and contemporaries used oil on canvas but Morrisseau proved that you don’t need it with his acrylic on canvas work. The limited number of art pieces set to 4 is comfortable even though only choosing a small amount does make the executive director seem pretentious.

10 views0 comments

Recent Posts

See All