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Must-Sees This Week: July 20 to 26, 2017

This week, two Black artists look beyond diaspora by turning inwards in an upcoming Toronto show

Lots of great art exhibits 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.

Toronto and Area

Tau Lewis and Curtis Santiago’s “Through the people we are looking at ourselves” opens at Cooper Cole on July 21 with a reception at 6 p.m. alongside a solo exhibition by Daniel Rios Rodriguez.

At the Aga Khan Museum on July 22, it’s the first day for the expansive new exhibition “Here: Locating Contemporary Canadian Artists.” A panel with artists Babak Golkar, Nep Sidhu and Jaret Vadera, among others, takes place that day at 2 p.m. as well. (Get a preview of the “Here” in advance with our feature article on the show.)

On July 20, “How far afield?” looks beyond the Blackwood Gallery’s expected boundaries, exploring the landscapes in and around the University of Toronto Mississauga Campus, with artists Chloé Roubert and Gemma SavioGolboo Amani (with Melisse Watson) and Abedar Kamgari at 12 p.m. with a performance. At NO Foundation, a double bill reception for Pete Smith’s “Southern Pastoral” and Otino Corsano’s “Forest” begins at 6 p.m. “The Art of Politics” opens at Propeller Gallery at 6:30 p.m., featuring work by Justin Mencel, Phyllis Gordon, Dragica Vidakovic, Andres Vosu, Audrey Smith and Helen Melbourne. Rebecca Chaperon’s “Garden” is also opening at Gallery 555 with a reception at 7 p.m.

On July 21, “Free Assembly” a group show of work by Christine Davis, Vlad Lunin and Adam Swica opens at Christie Contemporary with a reception at 6 p.m. At the same time, Katherine Boyer, Hazel Meyer, Petrina Ng and Sona Safaei-Sooreh contend with iteration in “Out of Repetition, Difference,” at Zalucky Contemporary which also opens at 6 p.m.

The 10th anniversary of “Big on Bloor” takes over Bloor Street from Dufferin to Lansdowne on July 22—look especially for the “JOUEZ Participatory/Performance Art Projects,” which showcases work by Andrew Harwood, Annie Wong and more.


“Path of Resilience,” a public art project presented by DHC/ART Foundation for Contemporary Art and Phi of commissioned new works inspired by Montreal’s 375th anniversary by Maria Hupfield, Nadia Myre and Skawennati is now on view in several locations around the city. In closings, “Come As You Are” closes at Galerie Antoine Ertaskiran on July 22 and “Guttersnipes” closes at Vie D’ange on July 23.

Vancouver and Area

On July 22, Griffin Art Projects is launching two new exhibition catalogues based on Helga Pakasaar’s exhibitions “Woosh” and “Surrogates” at 1 p.m. Later, Presentation House Gallery is launching their new publication, “Mainstreeters” at 3 p.m with a party and BBQ, which also marks the closing event for the gallery, which will be reopening in its new location as the Polygon. BYOPB (Bring Your Own Picnic Blanket)!

If you have seen and enjoyed Ericka Walker’s exhibition “The Great Experiment” at the Reach, you might want to drop by the Abbotsford Legion on July 20 at 4:30 p.m. to see the unveiling of her new public mural project, which will be followed by a reception.

VIVO Media Arts continues recovering from their May burglary with a fundraiser and thank-you dance party on July 22 beginning at 8 p.m. (tickets are $20 for non-members).

A number of tours are on the docket at the Contemporary Art Gallery this week: explore the current exhibitions with a Spanish tour led by artist Guadalupe Martinez on July 23 at 3 p.m. Or, on July 27 at 6 p.m., join assistant curator Jas Lally to focus in on “Be Polite” by Gordon Bennett.


How do you run a world-class film festival in a rural town with no theatres? The Fabulous Festival of Fringe Film, curated by Maria Hupfield and Jason Lujan, and Kate Barry, among others, offers and answer. It kicks off on Sauble Beach on July 22 at 8:30 p.m. At sunset, Randall Okita’s Things I Can’t Tell You screens, followed by a program titled “Short Films from Turtle Island” co-presented with imagineNATIVE. The festival continues until July 30 and features a drive-in theatre, Indigenous showcases, cinematography workshops and more. Xiaojing Yan’s “Floating” opens at Durham Art Gallery with a reception at 2 p.m on July 22.


“Heavy Hitters: The Group of 7 & Contemporaries” brings together paintings by the famed Canadian artists at the Judith and Norman Alix Art Gallery, and upcoming programming brings the show to life. On July 20 at 7 p.m., drop by for a talk by art conservator Jennifer Robertson, who will discuss the restoration of two Emily Carr paintings. Curator Jaclyn Meloche gives a talk about the Group of 7 at the gallery on July 27 at 7 p.m.


Explore London galleries—DNA Gallery, the Arts Project, Satellite Gallery and Forest City Gallery—during an organized gallery crawl kicking off from Museum London on July 22 at 6 p.m. Tickets are $25—and there are also craft beer tastings.


Lindsey Wilson’s “Intimate Entanglements” opens at Gallery 101 on July 20 with a vernissage the following week on July 27 at 5 p.m.


On July 21, “Pools and Pride,” an exhibition of new works by Bree Hyland and Ian Funke-McKay opens at Hermes with a reception at 5:30 p.m.


Explorations of New Brunswick’s rural and urban landscapes are featured in “Vistas of the East” and “The Splendour of Serenity,” now on view at Gallery 78 until August 27.


Truck hosts a closing reception for Leigh Tennant’s “TWIST (Factory of Kisses and Doves),” an exhibition in the +15 Window, on July 20 at 6 p.m. Untitled Art Society also hosts a closing reception beginning on July 20 at 6 p.m. for Anna Eyler and Nicolas Lapointe’s “no-fluke/no-feed/no-swim/no-play/no-fun,” which is also in the +15 Window.

The work of Megan Fen and Nicole Haywood is brought together in “Nearly as Close as Oneself,” opening at Stride Gallery on July 20 at 6 p.m.

Tour the Esker Foundation’s current exhibitions with Elizabeth Diggon, the gallery’s researcher, on July 27 at 7 p.m. Also that night, head on over to Contemporary Calgary for a late-night event featuring a talk by Calgary artist Kim Hoang, beginning at 6 p.m. and followed by patio drinks, music and more.


On July 21, graphic novelist, artist and performer Walter Scott will be delivering Wendy’s Revenge, a performance lecture utilizing voice, image and sound at the Plug In Institute of Contemporary Art at 7 p.m.


Levi Glass is giving a talk on his current exhibition “Expulsion: Panoptic Machine and Feed” at the Kamloops Art Gallery on July 20 at 6 p.m.


On July 20, “Dream Islands,” a group exhibition featuring work by Sonnet L’Abbé, Derya Akay, Vanessa Brown, Maggie Groat, Yuki Kimura, Anne Low and Lari Robson opens at Nanaimo Art Gallery with a reception at 7 p.m.

Annapolis Royal

On July 23, Carrie Allison-Goodfellow’s “Displaced” opens alongside Pene Domries’s “Worlds Apart Revisited” and Alannah Journeay’s “Beginning” at ARTsPLACE Gallery at 1 p.m.

Our weekly must-sees, published each Thursday, are chosen from opening and event announcements sent to at least two days prior to publication. For listings of art openings, exhibitions and events, visit

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