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Fall 2021 art preview

Canadian art and artists are everywhere this fall. For this special edition of AGOinsider, we went from coast to coast – and overseas – to round up a few things we can’t wait to see.

Serge Lemoye, Bleu, de la série

Serge Lemoye, Bleu, de la série {Noms}. 1983. Acrylique sur toile, 204 x 137 x 6.5 cm. Collection Lavalin du Musée d’at contemporain de Montréal (A 92 161 P1). Copyright Succession Serge Lemoye / SOCAN (2021). Photo: MACM, Richard-Max Tremblay.

Autumn comes but once a year – and this year, it's bursting with new ideas and bold works of art, in person and online, courtesy of visionary Canadian, Indigenous and Canadian-based artists. In addition to the many exciting exhibitions coming to the AGO this fall, here, in our first AGOinsider fall art preview, we spotlight some of the most exciting moments on the horizon.. 


Duane Linklater. can the circle be unbroken 2, 3, 4, and 5

Duane Linklater. can the circle be unbroken 2, 3, 4, and 5, 2019. Digital prints on linen. Dimensions  variable. © Duane Linklater. Installation view from SOFT POWER, San Francisco Museum of Modern Art,  2019. Photo: Don Ross

Sackville, NB artist Tamara Henderson is headed south of the equator to debut new work at this year’s 34th Bienal de São Paulo, in Brazil. 

Seattle’s Frye Art Museum welcomes Omaskêko Cree artist Duane Linklater for a solo exhibition. Entitled mymotherside, it culminates in a wall-tearing architectural intervention. 

In his new book, Disorientation: Being Black in the World, poet, writer and professor Ian Williams examines the impact of racial encounters on racialized people, drawing from his experiences as a Black man.

The Group of Seven continue their European tour courtesy the AGO, NGC and Schirn Kunsthalle Frankfurt, as Magnetic North: Imagining Canada in Painting 1910-1940 opens at The Kunsthal Rotterdam in the Netherlands. 

From poet and writer Molly Peacock comes Flower Diary: In Which Mary Hiester Reid Paints, Travels, Marries & Opens a Door, a new biography of one of Canada’s pioneering female artists.

MOCA Toronto launches Greater Toronto Art 2021 (GTA21), a new triennial survey, with an exhibition of twenty-one artists and art collectives tied to the region



Tarralik Duffy, Supuuqtuq

Tarralik Duffy, Supuuqtuq, 2021, digital drawing.

On the 50th anniversary of Pitseolak Ashoona’s illustrated autobiography Pictures Out of My Life, the Art Gallery of Guelph presents ᐃᓅᓯᕋ | Inuusira, an exhibition of new work by Nunavummiut Inuk artist Tarralik Duffy in dialogue with Ashoona’s prints and drawings.  

Soft Water Hard Stone is the title of the 2021 New Museum Triennial. Happening in New York City, it features 40 artists, including Toronto’s Nadia Belerique, Laurie Kang and Jes Fan, Vancouver-based artist Jeneen Frei Njooti, Lunenburg-born artist Ambera Wellmann and North bay’s Tanya Lukin Linklater.

Lethbridge University’s Harley Morman invites audiences to do the time warp again, as part of a new exhibition of lenticular images at the Art Gallery of Alberta. 

Chinese-born, Toronto based artist Jeffrey Chong Wang says ciao courtesy a solo exhibition at Dorothy Circus Gallery in Rome. 

Art/TO returns this fall, with an in-person event at the Metro Toronto Convention Centre featuring local and international artists, complemented by an online fair.

Legendary Quebec artist – and die-hard Montreal Canadiens fan – Serge Lemoyne gets a full-blown retrospective courtesy The Musée national des beaux-arts du Québec.



Astronaut with Rocks

Daniel H. Dugas & Valerie LeBlanc, 2018. Astronaut with Rocks.

Having spent years studying the Bay of Fundy’s unique biosphere, artists Valerie LeBlanc and Daniel H. Dugas will debut their video-installation Fundy at the Mount Saint Vincent University Art Gallery.  

Toronto artist and illustrator Ness Lee will reveal a new installation at Artspace: Contemporary Art Projects in Peterborough, ON

Founded in Montreal in 1977 by fashion designer Nicola Pelly and architect Harry Parnass, Parachute clothing became an international phenomenon. The McCord Museum celebrates their androgynous and provocative style in a new exhibition Parachute: Subversive Fashion of the '80s..|

Hot off a summer residency at Arsenal Contemporary Art Montreal, Halifax-raised textile artist Hannah Epstein debuts new work in a solo exhibition at Montreal’s Blouin | Division Gallery.

Revealing spaces of creativity, subjectivity and a kind of anarchic experimentation, Margaux Williamson: Interiors features works by the Toronto artist, activated by readings at the McMichael Canadian Art Collection. 



Robert Houle, Sandy Bay, 1998-99. Oil on canvas, black and white photograph and colour photograph on canvas, Masonite, 300 x 548.4 cm.

Robert Houle, Sandy Bay, 1998-99. Oil on canvas, black and white photograph and colour photograph on canvas, Masonite, 300 x 548.4 cm. Collection of the Winnipeg Art Gallery. Acquired with funds from the President's Appeal 2000 and with the support of the Canada Council for the Arts Acquisition Assistance program/Oeuvre achetée avec l'aide du programme d'aide aux acquisitions du Conseil des Arts du Canada. 2000-87 a-e. © Robert Houle. Photo: Ernest Mayer, courtesy of the Winnipeg Art Gallery.

Aabaakwad, the Indigenous-led conversation on Indigenous art, returns to the AGO, welcoming those who create, curate and write about Indigenous art to gather for four days, in-person and online.

For more exciting updates on visual art from the AGO and around the world, be sure to subscribe to the AGOinsider. 

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