March 7 to September 30, 2020
Opening Reception | Saturday, March 7 at 1:00 p.m.
Objects of art and cultural artifacts have an interesting relationship to technology that serves as a key influence to drive, shape and inspire contemporary works. By extending abstraction into the realm of cultural artifacts it affords a fresh and unexpected perspective of the AGN Permanent Collection. Toronto based artist Michael Adamson approached this exhibition with the idea of creating a suite of contemporary paintings that reflect aspects of the AGN’s Permanent Collection.
“My work consciously integrates the historical with the contemporary in an effort to better understand and more fully enjoy the act of painting.”
In many ways, my work is created specifically to be exhibited along-side historical Canadian painting. While, or perhaps because, I do show my work, and have studied, internationally my specific concern is the marriage of Canadian commerce and Canadian culture within modern painting. A collection such as the AGN’s affords a deep view of our shared visual history.
Similar conceptionally to the subproject of A.Y. Jackson to create a sustainable “pictures market” for Canadian work in the 1930s and 40s, I have long been interested in rescuing the “abandoned assets” of Canada’s much beloved painterly history.
A regional public art gallery’s collection is a source of tremendous wealth and value, the greatest value perhaps lies in the combination of the object and the enlivened state brought about through study, exhibition and elocution of the meaning of the work as well as the artwork itself.
The work selected for exhibition to coincide with the AGN’s permanent collection exhibition have aesthetic and conceptual links with specific works in the AGN collection.”
Michael Adamson, 2020
Image: Michael Adamson, Rideau 2019, oil on canvas