With the art world heading towards the end of summer slowdown, now is a great time to take in some of the many great group shows. Along with the big names, it’s a perfect chance to learn about some newer artists as well.
Without a doubt, the show to see for big names is Pop Life! At the National Gallery in Ottawa, which runs until September 19th. Taking the late work of Andy Warhol as a starting point, the show features some of the biggest names in art of the last three decades such as Takashi Murakami, Jeff Koons, Damien Hirst, and Maurizio Cattelan.
Some of the subtler (and often more critical) works made lasting impressions as well, such as Reena Spaulings Enigma series of tablecloths and the photocopied logos of Peter Nagy.
Try to time your visit while the “twins-are-in” for the Damien Hirst twin spot painting!
In Toronto, time is the theme, not only of the art but also you will be wishing you had more of it rushing around to take in all the great shows. The Art Gallery of Ontario has the exhibit Sculpture as Time: Major Works until August 1st, right next to Anselm Kiefer’s room filling installation Palmsonntag.
I again found myself struck by subtlety in Wolfgang Laib’s Milk Stone. It was also great to view Kelly Richardson’s Twilight Avenger.
Next, run over to MOCCA to take in Phenomenology of the Built Environment, where artists examine our relationship to the city. The series of Propositions for a New System drawings by Sarah Graham were a highlight here, but the show is full of great work.
If the natural world is more your thing, head to the Powerplant to see Adaptation: Between Species on until Septembre 12th.
Back in Montreal, Extreme Painting is taking over the city at a number of galleries between now and the end of August. Checkout Paul Bureau’s chunky paintings that will be at the Donald Browne gallery.