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Rita Letendre’s lessons on life

Rita Letendre's painting Tabori.

Rita Letendre. Tabori, 1976. Acrylic on canvas, 86.5 x 122 cm. Gift of Marie A. Dunseith, 1983. © 2017 Art Gallery of Ontario.

To celebrate the #5womenartists challenge, we’re highlighting some amazing women artists featured at the AGO as well as incredible women curators who work with them.

This week, we’re looking back to last September when we hosted the exhibition Rita Letendre: Fire & Light, a retrospective on the groundbreaking work of one of Canada’s eminent living abstract artists, Rita Letendre. The exhibition blew Toronto away with Letendre’s large-scale paintings, undeniably energizing in their vibrant colour and striking compositions.

We were lucky to have the Québécois/Abenaki artist visit us during the exhibition’s final weeks. “I wanted to portray life and the strength of it. There’s no wishy-washy, or ‘wait for a minute.’ Jump on it!” Letendre told the AGO’s Curator of Indigenous Art, Wanda Nanibush, who co-curated the exhibition with Fredrik S. Eaton Curator of Canadian Art, Georgiana Uhlyarik.

Watch their conversation in the video below.

(For optimal viewing, use the Chrome internet browser.)

Don’t miss our other stories on #5womenartists, including our feature on Käthe Kollwitz, a leading 20th century German artist known for her etchings, lithographs, woodcuts, sculptures and drawings. And check out our piece on the friendship between Canadian painters Pegi Nicol MacLeod and Marian Dale Scott.

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