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Must-Sees This Week: March 22 to 28, 2018

The lived reality of women’s labour is revealed at Western Front. Plus: at KWAG, Lucie Chan explores two women’s experiences with the police.

Lots of great art exhibitions and events are taking place across the country this week. Here are our recommendations for debuting shows and events, and a few reminders about shows that are closing. Visit our Exhibition Finder for more listings of worthwhile shows that are already open.


Women’s labour takes the focus in Western Front’s new group exhibition “These Hands,” curated by Pablo de Ocampo and opening on March 23. Consisting of four films, the exhibition explores questions around work and its representation and value. The films Coney Island Baby (featuring artists Jeneen Frei Njootli, Gabrielle L’Hirondelle Hill, Chandra Melting Tallow and Tania Willard) and La Libertad (by Colombian-French artist Laura Huertas Millán) will be shown within the gallery space, while Nightcleaners (first released in 1975 by the Berwick Street Collective) and These Hands (by Tanzanian filmmaker Flora M’mbugu-Schelling) will be screened at the gallery’s Grand Luxe Hall in April.

On March 24, join Canadian Art editors and contributors for a free day of talks in galleries all over Vancouver, including ones at Artspeak, Catriona Jeffries and Or Gallery. From 5 to 6 p.m., Canadian Art and 221A will co-present a performance by artist Divya Mehra at 221A’s Pollyanna 圖書館 Library, followed by our “Dirty Words” Spring issue launch at Franc Gallery at 7 p.m.

Over at Unit 17, New York artist Leslie Thornton’s work debuts in “SO MUCH MUCH” with a reception from noon to 6 p.m. on March 25. Among the works exhibited will be Thornton’s recent video works They Were Just People and SO MUCH MUCH, the former dealing with the atomic bomb that dropped on Hiroshima and the latter grappling with current political climates.
Meanwhile, Wil Aballe Art Projects presents Scott Billings’s “Skull Practice” on March 22. In this latest work, Billings uses different technologies such as robots, algorithms and 3D prints to set up the “perfect crime.”

Elsewhere, the Burrard Arts Foundation unveils its next exhibition “When the sun rises, we keep the fire aflame” by Karen Zalamea on March 22 with a reception at 7 p.m. Showcasing her latest work, Zalamea continues testing the boundaries of landscape photography. On March 27, Access Gallery hosts an artist talk with Halifax-based artist Lou Sheppard at 7 p.m. Sheppard will discuss their practice and recent work undertaken during a residency at the Banff Centre for Arts and Creativity.


On March 22 at 7:30 p.m., join Canadian Art for a Victoria issue launch. Featuring a performance by Divya Mehra and Amy Fung, the event happens at Open Space. Mehra, cover artist for our Spring issue, will give performative lecture exploring memory, race, death and the service industry. Fung will be reading an excerpt from a new work in progress, Before I was a critic, I was a human being.

Deluge Contemporary Art hosts a screening and performance by Jesse Malmed on March 27 at 7 p.m. The Chicago-based artist will present Untitled (Just Kidding), an evolving work consisting of film and performance.


The Kitchener-Waterloo Art Gallery presents work by Lucie Chan—the gallery’s current artist-in-residence—in “How to be 57,” launching on March 23 at 7 p.m. Chan makes her exhibition’s starting point two 57-year-old women and their different experiences with the police in their own homes. From there, Chan is exploring wider themes of identity and cultural confusion. Using drawing and animation, Chan will create an installation within the gallery space where audience members will be invited to participate in a community archive in the making.


The controversial exhibition “Jimmie Durham: At the Center of the World” opens at the Remai Modern on March 25, the final venue in this first North American retrospective previously shown in the US at the Hammer Museum, the Walker Art Center and the Whitney Museum of American Art. On this same day, the exhibition’s curator Anne Ellegood, current senior curator at the Hammer Museum, will present the talk “Jimmie Durham: Post-American” to discuss Durham’s life and career.


The Art Gallery of Nova Scotia presents its next exhibition “The Light Fantastic” starting on March 23. Showcasing luminescent works around questions of identity and sexuality, this multimedia exhibition spans neon, video, photography, print and paint. Featured artists include Allyson Clay, Ron Terada and Attila Richard Lukacs, among many others. Meanwhile, “Wreaking Havoc” launches at the Mary E. Black Gallery on March 23, featuring works by basketmaker and knitter Jane Whitten that reflect on the influence of climate change.


Art & Social Strata takes over parts of the city of Hamilton from March 23 to 25 with a series of artist projects and a conference spread out at three venues: the Workers Arts & Heritage Centre, the Factory Media Centre and Hamilton Artists Inc. This weekend event will explore art practices that are socially aware and engage political praxis. Featured artists include Abedar Kamgari, Sean Procyk, Thea Jones, Oliver Husain, Amanda Low, Fallon Simard, Nahed Mansour, Kandis Friesen and Kika Thorne, among others.


Stride Gallery presents work by Kyle Alden in “PORTABLE CLOSETS,” opening on March 23 with a reception at 8 p.m. Blending sculpture, installation and performance, Alden considers representations of queer sexuality. Over at TRUCK Contemporary Art, the exhibition “La Guaria Morada” by Juan Ortiz-Apuy debuts on March 23 at 7 p.m. Centered around the national flower of Costa Rica, the show creates an ecosystem within the gallery space as an analogy for the fragility of balance within both the environment and artistic communities. Ortiz-Apuy will give an artist talk the following day on March 24 at 1 p.m. Meanwhile, at the centre’s U-HALL Community Space, “The Usual Place, But to the Side,” featuring artists Martina Westib and Kaylee Maciejko, also debuts on March 23.

Meanwhile, the Esker Foundation hosts the free talk “Environmental Psychology—What Buildings Do: Examples from Healthcare and Beyond with David Borkenhagen” on March 23 from 7 to 8 p.m. The discussion will explore how environmental psychology has been applied in design and architecture, specifically in healthcare centres. Elsewhere, Christine Klassen Gallery presents “Studio NOW” on March 22, featuring artists Lori Lukasewich, Lisa Matthias, Verna Vogel and Karen Klassen.


Douglas Coupland’s solo exhibition “Tsunami” opens at Daniel Faria Gallery on March 22 with a reception from 6 to 8 p.m. Elsewhere, Meaghan Hyckie’s work debuts in “The Intelligent Woman’s Guide to Atomic Radiation” at Olga Korper Gallery on March 24 with a reception from 2 to 5 p.m. This exhibition will showcase Hyckie’s drawings that work to deconstruct and reimagine spatiality. The Younger Than Beyoncé Gallery has partnered with Parkdale art spaces the Feminist Art Gallery, Public Studio and Margin of Eras Gallery to co-present “Architecture of Care.” Opening on March 22 across all three Parkdale locations, the exhibition will look at the interrelatedness of environment and identity, specifically as it pertains to this Toronto neighbourhood. Featured artists are Yan Wen Chang, Kristina Guison, Tzazná Miranda Leal, Mani Mazinani, José Andrés Mora and Diana VanderMeulen.

Over at 401 Richmond, Wendy Red Star will be in dialogue with Wanda Nanibush in Gallery 44’s latest Field of Vision talk, titled “Forging Pathways for Future Apsáalooke Feminists,” on March 22 from 7 to 9 p.m. Later, on March 23, new projects launch at Gallery 44: Annie MacDonell and Maïder Fortuné’s work debuts in “Communicating Vessels,” while Zile Liepins’s “Enchanted Forest Presence” will be showcased in the vitrines space. Over at Prefix Institute of Contemporary Art, artists Sandra Brewster and Esery Mondesir along with curator Betty Julian will give a talk on March 24 at 2 p.m. in link with the exhibition “Movers and Shakers.” The exhibition ends on this same day. Down the hall, Cynthia Dinan-Mitchell’s “Mood Lighting” launches on March 23 at Open Studio Gallery.

The Art Gallery of Ontario will host an Art+Feminism Wikipedia Edit-A-Thon on March 24 from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. Elsewhere, Jacob Robert Whibley’s solo exhibition “to kiss the lip of the horizon” opens at Zalucky Contemporary on March 24 with a reception from 4 to 6 p.m. Meanwhile, the Art Museum at the University of Toronto presents two new exhibitions from the MVS graduating program on March 23: “and I am the curator of this show1,” curated by Christophe Barbeau, and works by Rouzbeh Akhbari, Sam Cotter, Andrea Creamer and Noah Scheinman in the University of Toronto Art Centre.

Later during the week, on March 28, Onsite Gallery hosts a screening and discussion of Alanis Obomsawin’s documentary Trick or Treaty?, which casts a critical lens on Treaty No. 9 of Northern Ontario and Northwestern Québec. The event kicks off at 6 p.m. with a viewing of the written Treaty No. 9 itself from 1905, on loan for the evening along with the diary of Daniel MacMartin, one of the Treaty commissioners. The screening and a discussion with Obomsawin will follow.


Galerie Bernard presents “ÉCLATS D’UNE MÉMOIRE” by André Jasmin on March 28. A collection of works on paper as well as watercolour and charcoal works dating from 1967 to 2011 will be on display. The Darling Foundry hosts a discussion with the centre’s latest international artists-in-residence Thomas Lévy-Lasne and Alejandra Bonilla Restrepo on March 22 at 6 p.m. The artists will present the work and research undertaken during their respective residencies, including a screening of Lévy-Lasne’s short films at 8:30 p.m.

In closings, these are the last days to catch “Our Thing” featuring works by Aude Pariset, Jon Rafman and Christopher Kulendran Thomas at Galerie Antoine Ertaskiran, which ends on March 24.


The Art Gallery of Southwestern Manitoba hosts a reception on March 22 at 7:30 p.m. to unveil two new projects. Jaime Black in collaboration with Barbara Blind and Jessie Jannuska have created the second artwork for the AGSM Billboard; titled She gathers, it speaks to the history of the Brandon Indian Residential School. Also launching is “Photovoice 2, Planting Seeds of Change: Voices of Indigenous Youth” in the centre’s community gallery, which will showcase works and stories by young Indigenous artists.


Laura St.Pierre’s “Museum of Future History/Le Musée de l’histoire à venir” opens at the Dunlop Art Gallery on March 24. Curated by Blair Fornwald, the show records flora in Saskatchewan’s boreal forests in a museum-like installation.


Jordan Seal’s exhibition “Wealth of the Eternal Garden” opens on March 22 at the City Hall Art Gallery. Seal will later give an artist talk at the gallery, in conversation with Rob Johnson, on March 25 at 2 p.m.

These recommendations are selected from press material sent to at least two days prior to publication. For listings, visit

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