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Must-Sees This Week: March 31 to April 6, 2016

Lots of great art exhibitions open across the country this week. Here are our recommendations for upcoming shows, and a few reminders about shows that are closing. (And remember to visit our Exhibition Finder, or download the Canadian Art Finder in the App Store or Google Play for even more worthwhile shows that are already open.)


The Capture Photography Festival launches April 1 from 7 to 10 p.m. at the Roundhouse Community Arts Centre, launching a month of photography exhibitions, events and public installations. More than 50 galleries are involved, including Wil Aballe Art Projects, which is opening Jon Rafman and Mark Soo’s exhibition on March 31 at 7 p.m. Other Capture shows: the first Canadian solo for New Brunswick/NYC-based artist Erin O’Keefe, opening at Gallery Jones on April 2 from 2 to 4 p.m.; “Intervals: Photography in Flux” opening at South Main Gallery from 7 to 9 p.m.; and works on healing and light by Patrick Campbell and Madison Killough, opening April 1 at 7 p.m. at Field Contemporary; and public billboards featuring Jim Breukelman‘s classic series Hot Properties. Elsewhere, the Belkin Art Gallery hosts tea with artist-in-residence Beau Dick on March 31 at 1 p.m., and “reMatriation and other ruminations,” an event curated by Ashok Mathur and Jeneen Frei Njootli, takes place at VIVO on March 31 at 7:30 p.m.


Two senior Canadian artists of note open exhibitions at Michael Gibson Gallery on April 2 from 2 to 4 p.m. Winnipeg’s Aganetha Dyck turns her work with bees in a different direction with “Feeder Boards”—a display of some of the hive-feeding structures she has collected over the years. And Vancouver’s Gathie Falk debuts “Heavenly Bodies Again,” consisting of paintings of night skies filled with suns, rays, moons, clouds and five-pointed stars.


Photographer Sarah Anne Johnson returns to the narrative of her grandmother’s traumatic mental-health “treatment” through performance-based video installations in “The Kitchen,” opening at Gallery 44 on April 1 at 6 p.m. Also opening at Gallery 44 is work by multidisciplinary Toronto artist Marvin Luvualu Antonio. In conjunction with exhibition “Rehearsal for Objects Lie on a Table,” the Art Museum at the University of Toronto is hosting workshop performances directed by Karthy Chin on April 2 at 2 p.m. Kelly Mark’s “Curmudgeon” opens at Diaz Contemporary on April 1 at 6 p.m. A selection of Ciprian Mureșan’s experimental films featuring puppetry will be at Typology, opening on April 1 at 7 p.m. Cooper Cole Gallery opens both a solo exhibition by American artist Keith J. Varadi and a group show entitled “Dream Song 386” on April 1. Erin Stump Projects presents two solo exhibitions on April 1 from 6 to 9 p.m.: a new body of work by Winnie Truong and the first solo exhibition at the gallery by painter Darby MilbrathSven Lütticken analyzes modern and contemporary forms of motion study, tracking and capture in a lecture hosted by Mercer Union at the Studio Theatre in Harbourfront Centre on March 31 at 7 p.m. Kevin Yates returns to the motif of the mirrored image in a solo exhibition at Susan Hobbs Gallery opening on March 31 at 7 p.m. London-based artist/poet Heather Phillipson shows new video, image, text and audio work in a solo exhibition entitled “sub-fusc love-feast” that challenges ideas of nature as detached from culture, opening at Trinity Square Video on April 2.


Best known outside the artworld for his animations in the film Punch Drunk Love and his visual contributions to Beck’s Sea Change, late American artist Jeremy Blake was known for his fantastical use of colour and time. His film Winchester, screening at Plug In ICA until April 3, is part of a trilogy of video animations that combine 8-mm film footage, static 16-mm shots of old photographs, hundreds of ink drawings and intricate frame-by-frame digital drawings to tell the story of Sarah Winchester, the heiress who married into the Winchester gun fortune. Elsewhere, at Actual Gallery, Jamie Black’s “Conversations with the Land” incorporates elements of land art, performance and installation, exploring the relationship between the land and the body, touching on themes of memory, identity and resilience. The show opens April 1 at 7 p.m.


Appropriately timed for April Fool’s Day, the symposium “Sans Blague/No Joke: The Matter of Humour in Contemporary Art” runs April 1 and 2 at the Musée d’art contemporain de Montréal, including talks by comedians, artists and curators. Patrick Mikhail Gallery celebrates 10 years with an anniversary exhibition and editions launch; opening reception is April 2 at 2 p.m. How images are constructed, represented and mediated forms the core of Lorna Bauer’s artistic investigations, on view at Galerie Nicolas Robert starting on April 2 at 3 p.m. Last but not least, Jeanie Riddle presents new works produced in Paris that use text, sculpture and the assistance of her daughter—the show opens at galerie antoine ertaskiran April 6 from 5 to 8 p.m.


“never too far & not so close” is an exhibition of new work by Cassie Packham that foregrounds the material uncertainty involved in perception through an unfixing, withholding, and repetition in video, sculpture, drawing, and installation. Get a closer look at the work at a closing reception and artist talk March 31 from 7 to 10 p.m. at the Khyber. Over at Saint Mary’s University Art Gallery, large-scale abstract paintings by Leya Evelyn get an opening reception April 1 at 8 p.m.


Each year, the Kelowna Art Gallery’s One on One series engages an emerging First Nations curator who selects an emerging First Nations artist to work with. This year, curator Tania Willard has selected artist Krista Belle Stewart, who is originally from the Douglas Lake area of BC and is now based in New York. Stewart will be exhibiting four new pieces: a video, an untitled work that features soil in a bucket from Stewart’s ancestral land, a piece called Indian Artists at Work (2015), which is a wall installation, and a construction making reference to the American artist Leon Polk Smith. Find out more at a reception April 1 from 7 to 9 p.m.


Bear Witness of A Tribe Called Red is featured this spring at the Dunlop Art Gallery Mediatheque with Brave Step, a film that comically revives a 1980s Native cartoon superhero character through video and musical remixing. And over at the Dunlop’s Sherwood Gallery, Brette Gabel’s textile works explore ideas around comfort and discomfort through quilted and embroidered renderings of her childhood home. Both exhibitions officially begin April 2, with a Gabel artist talk and reception also on April 1 at 1 p.m.


Diane Landry’s remarkable kinetic sculpture Knight of Infinite Resignation opens at the Judith and Norman Alix Art Gallery on April 1, with an artist talk the night prior on March 31 at 7 p.m. Also at the JNAAG, six large paintings by Gary Spearin debut on April 1 as well.


Chantal Wall, Kelli Rae Morningbull and Portia Yip are just three of the filmmakers featured in the Herland Video Production Workshop for Women screening happening March 31 at 7 p.m. at Theatre Junction Grand. In total, seven female filmmakers have spent the past five months working intensively with local mentors to write, produce, shoot and edit their own short film, with the results sharing their own diverse personal stories.

Owen Sound

The Tom Thomson Art Gallery opens two new exhibitions on April 3 at 2 p.m. The first, “Herd,” features the work of Winnipeg artist Diana Thorneycroft. For the past three years, Thorneycroft has been altering plastic toy horses, and more recently, making photographs of their herdsmen. The culmination of this work is an installation consisting of some 200 horses and 8 large-scale digital photographs. Nearly half of the horses have been subtly or significantly altered physically; some have had limbs replaced with prosthetics while others have been drastically morphed to explore themes of spectacle and otherness. The second exhibition “In Spirit,” is a group show curated by Virginia Eichhorn and Denis Longchamps. Featuring work by John Latour, Timothy Laurin and Heather Murray, “In Spirit” addresses the ghostly through photography.

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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