Big birthdays on the east coast and revamped reading salons on the west—not to mention a new Nuit Blanche in the nation’s capital—are among the top art bets across the country this week, September 20 to 26.
September 20: First day of “Evan Penny: Re Figured” at the Art Gallery of Ontario, 317 Dundas Street West, Toronto
Over the past 30 years, Toronto-based artist Evan Penny has won international acclaim for his hyperreal, meticulously crafted figures. This solo survey, organized by a German curator and toured to Austria and Italy prior to its final stop here, looks at roughly the last 10 years of production for the South African–born, Alberta-trained artist—a period focusing on the ways that digital imaging and photography affect our sense of ourselves. (For an advance peek, check out David Balzer’s in-depth interview with Penny.)
September 21 from 7 p.m. to 9 p.m.: Opening for NSCAD’s 125th anniversary exhibitions at the Anna Leonowens Gallery, 1891 Granville Street, Halifax
One of Canada’s oldest art schools does a big birthday bash this weekend, including three exhibitions that promise to trace the college’s different eras in a succinct manner. Gallery 1 will be devoted to historical works portraying the college and its personalities; Gallery 2 will host Corrections, an installation by conceptualist Garry Neill Kennedy, NSCAD’s longest-serving president, in which all the imperfections in the space are circled; and Gallery 3 will be home to The King & I: Reprise, a working bar co-created by Sobey Award finalist Eleanor King and decorated with works by NSCAD alums and faculty.
September 22 from 6:22 p.m. to September 23 at 4:23 a.m.: Nuit Blanche at various locations across Ottawa
The Nuit Blanche phenomenon continues to grow, with the nation’s capital holding its first such event on Saturday. Roughly 150 artists are due to participate, while SAW Gallery will be presenting an interactive public project by New Orleans artist Candy Chang as well as outdoor installations by locals. Gallery 101 will present performances by Julie Fiala and Hélène Lefebvre at the Alexandra Bridge, and the Ottawa Art Gallery will be highlighting its new exhibition “Expeditions,” which features work by Katie Bethune-Leamen and Cecilia Nygren, among other Canadian artists. Also worth watching out for: a steamroller printing press on Gladstone Avenue.
September 22: Gallery Hop Tours and Talks at various locations across Toronto
The 17th edition of the Canadian Art Foundation’s Gallery Hop is on this week, with Saturday’s program featuring loads of free art talks and gallery tours. The day kicks off at 11 a.m. at the TIFF Bell Lightbox with a panel featuring Micah Lexier, Alain Paiement and Laurel Woodcock. In the afternoon, talks and tours of eight districts across the city take place, with highlights including Shary Boyle in conversation at Jessica Bradley and Luis Jacob chatting at Birch Libralato. Finally, the day winds up at 5:30 p.m. with a launch for our fall issue. Get all the details at canadianart.ca/galleryhop.
September 26 from 7 p.m. to 9 p.m.: No Reading After The Internet event with Michael Turner at On Main and VIVO, 1965 Main Street, Vancouver
Author Michael Turner, who often contributes to Canadian Art, leads this session of the No Reading After The Internet salon series. Collectively produced in Toronto, Vancouver and other locales by Amy Lynn Kazymerchyk, Alexander Muir and cheyanne turions, No Reading After the Internet is “a salon for communally reading cultural texts with an interest in reforming publics and experimenting with the act of reading, as its own media form, in our moment.” The free event dovetails with On Main and VIVO’s presentation of works by Lisa Steele and Kim Tomczak, with Turner’s text addressing Steele and Tomczak’s Becoming…. .