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Sculptural greatness you can't miss

December 1st is your last chance to see solo exhibitions of work by Canadian contemporary artists Valérie Blass and Kara Hamilton.

Valerie Blass exhibition

Valérie Blass, The Mime, the Model and the Dupe, 2019. Installation view at the Art Gallery of Ontario. Acrylic gesso, paint, plaster, copper, empty chip bag, jumpsuit, resin, epoxy and fiberglass, dimensions variable. Courtesy of the artist and Catriona Jeffries, Vancouver. ©  Valérie Blass. Photo © Art Gallery of Ontario.

As 2020 fast approaches, we’re preparing to say goodbye to some of our favourite exhibitions of 2019. Sunday, December 1 is your last chance to experience the innovative sculptural work of two of Canada’s most exciting contemporary artists. In these two exhibitions, located on Level 4 in the Vivian & David Campbell Centre for Contemporary Art (Galleries 402, 409 and 410), Valérie Blass and Kara Hamilton explore the infinite possibilities of sculpture in distinct and unique ways.  

The 2017 recipient of the Gershon Iskowitz Prize, Montreal artist Valérie Blass creates work that is deeply concerned with the human body. In Le Parlement des Invisibles (pictured above) she uses moldingcasting, and assemblage to create unique tableaux.  Inspired by the visual motifs of modern art, Blass translates that pictorial language into intricate sculptural compositions. She experiments with thematic variations, allowing the viewer to imagine limitless possibilities and unlikely configurations. During its time on view, Le Parlement des Invisibles has garnered critical acclaim from the Art America and Canadian Art.       

Kara Hamilton

Installation view, Kara Hamilton: Water in Two Colours, December 15, 2018 – June 23, 2019. Works shown (left to right): Slippery progress, Low tideMother Tongue (whale); Purple Dialect. © 2018 Kara Hamilton. Photo courtesy Art Gallery of Ontario

Toronto-based artist Kara Hamilton was trained in architecture and design, and she challenges these disciplines while exploring materials and their complex histories. In this new body of work, Hamilton presents us with found objects that have been transformed in ways that allow us to create new spatial and narrative connections between them. These objects, strange and familiar, invite us to reflect on our shared environments, both natural and constructed. Hamilton created three large biomorphic structures, and one wearable crown, using a variety of brass, aluminum, silver, gold, diamonds, pearls, and concrete. Most of the materials are previously functional, repurposed pieces like old elevator doors, the bell of a tuba and necklace pendants. Water in Two Colors was reviewed as a Critics’ Pick in the prestigious art magazine Artforum

Sculpture is an important medium in the AGO’s Modern and Contemporary collection and both these artists have work represented in it.  Hopefully, we will get to see some of their work in our collection galleries in the near future.

Le Parlement des Invisibles and Water in Two Colors are on view until December 1 on Level 4 in the Vivian & David Campbell Centre for Contemporary Art (Galleries 402, 409 and 410).

Admission to the AGO Collection and all special exhibitions is always free for AGO Members, AGO Annual Pass holders and visitors 25 and under.   


Valérie Blass: Le parlement des invisibles

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