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Must-Sees This Week: September 7 to 13, 2017

The Swarm festival features several important art openings in Vancouver over the next few days, including Kapwani Kiwanga at Or Gallery


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.


Vancouver’s annual Swarm event celebrates artist-run culture with a variety of openings September 7 and 8. Among the highlights: Kapwani Kiwanga’s “Flowers for Africa” at Or Gallery; Anne Low’s “Witch With Comb” at Artspeak; and Giovanna Swaby’s “We All Know Each Other” at Unit/Pitt.

Elsewhere in the city, Jeff Hallbauer’s new paintings debut at Wil Aballe Art Projects on September 7 from 6 to 8 p.m. New paintings by Kim Dorland and Gordon Smith go on exhibit at Equinox Gallery starting on September 8. Back Gallery Project presents Sarah Delaney’s “The Causal Effect” and Renée Lee Smith’s “Both Sides, Now” with an opening reception September 7 from 5 to 8 p.m.

At the Belkin Art Gallery on September 7 from 6 to 9 p.m., “The Beautiful Brain” offers the first North American museum exhibition to present the drawings of Santiago Ramón y Cajal, a Spanish pathologist, histologist and neuroscientist renowned for his discovery of neuron cells and their structure.

Montreal and Area

A variety of openings take place in the city this week as part of Momenta Biennale de l’image. (For more general details on this event, check out our news item.) Some of the openings of core and satellite exhibitions include: Taryn Simon at the Musée d’art contemporain September 7 at 7:30 p.m.; Meryl McMaster at the Musée des beaux-arts on September 7; and Erin Shirreff starting on September 8 from 5 to 8 p.m. at Darling Foundry.

In other mediums and locales: Cal Lane and Lois Andison have a show of sculpture and other media opening at Art Mur on September 9 from 3 to 5 p.m. Janet Werner and Gabriele Beveridge show paintings and assemblages, respectively, at Parisian Laundry beginning on September 8. Cynthia Girard’s “La Main Invisible” opens September 7 at 6 p.m. at Galerie McClure. Pierre Julien and Tristram Lansdowne offer prints and watercolours at Galerie Nicolas Robert starting September 9 at 3 p.m. Jacinthe Loranger opens a show at Arprim on September 9 at 3 p.m.

Galerie Verticale opens “Territoires rituels” September 7 from 4 to 8 p.m. at Chalet du Parc Rosaire-Gauthier. Experience work by Magali Babin, Jamie Ross and others. Atelier Circulaire debuts “Fantastica Mexico” by Arthur Desmarteaux September 8 at 5:30 p.m.

A bit of a drive outside of town, Alexandre David opens a new sculpture-architecture piece at Musée d’art contemporain des Laurentides on September 13 from 6 to 9 p.m.

Toronto and Area

The Toronto International Film Festival has a lot on tap for everyone starting September 7. Check out our list of nine picks for recommendations.

“Habits of Care” launches at Blackwood Gallery on September 13 with an opening reception and performances at the Blackwood Gallery from 6 to 8 p.m. Watch for works by Lisa Busby, Claire Fontaine, Deborah Ligorio and others curated by Helena Reckitt. “Aleesa Cohene: I Don’t Get It” opens September 8 at Gallery 44 from 6 to 8 p.m.; there is also a brunch talk by the artist September 9 from 12 to 2 p.m. “Ben Woolfitt: Days. End.” debuts September 9 at Richard Rhodes Dupont Projects.

Tecumseth Street openings abound: Divya Mehra’s “You have to tell Them, i’m not a Racist” opens September 7 from 6 to 8 p.m. at Georgia Scherman, with another Mehra project opening September 9 from 5 to 7 p.m. at Art Metropole. Susan Hobbs Gallery hosts an opening for “The Guest’s Shadow” with works by Rhonda Weppler and Trevor Mahovsky on September 7 from 6 to 8 p.m. Balint Zsako’s “Blood Orange” and Howard Podeswa’s “Still Life With Paper” open September 7 from 6 to 8 p.m. at Birch Contemporary.

There is a reception for “Unsettling,” featuring work by Lori Blondeau, Basil AlZieri and others at the Doris McCarthy Gallery on September 13 from 5 to 8:30 p.m. Jess Riva Cooper’s ceramics and Jeffrey Chong Wang’s paintings open at Gallery House on September 9 from 7 to 10 p.m. Corwyn Lund’s “Incisions and Illusions” opens September 9 from 4 to 6 p.m. at Zalucky Contemporary. Alex Turgeon‘s “Good Housekeeping” opens September 8 from 6 to 9 p.m. at Franz Kaka. Allyson Vieira‘s “Work Over Time” opens at Daniel Faria Gallery on September 9 from 4 to 6 p.m.

“walking across, talking through,” opening September 7 from 6 to 9 p.m. at the Art Gallery of Mississauga, features art by Dana Claxton, Nalini Malani, Lisa Myers and Sumaira Tazeen. Also opening that night at the AGM: “Transcending Signs,” which includes work by Ken Lum and Panchal Mansaram, and a project by Hiba Abdallah called “Souvenir Shop.” Asylum seekers are the focus of  “Intersection” by Michel Huneault, opening September 8 from 6 to 9 p.m. at Circuit Gallery. The Ryerson Image Centre opens a variety of shows on September 13, including one based on Canadian photos in the New York Times archive, and another featuring the premiere of Zacharias Kunuk‘s lastest film.

Trinity Square Video is having an opening reception for its latest themed commission, the moving copy, on September 8 from 6 to 8 p.m. This group show will feature works by Amelia Zhang, Kiera Boult and Fallon Simard, among others; it is accompanied by an essay by Aaditya Aggarwal.

Angell Gallery hosts an opening reception for Greg Haberny’s “Rise Then Shine” September 8 from 7 to 9 p.m. Italian artist Paolo Ventura’s exhibition “The Last Days of Vacation” opens September 7 from 6 to 8 p.m. at Nicholas Metivier Gallery. There will be an opening reception September 8 from 6 to 9 p.m. for Margaux Smith’s exhibition “Amaurosis” at Wil Kucey Gallery.

sab meynert’s “Progress is a Spiral Upward” opens September 7 at Tangled Art Gallery. Red Head Gallery hosts an opening reception September 8 from 6 to 8 p.m. for Jack Butler’s exhibition “Blindfold.”


“At Pelican Falls,” an exhibition by Governor General’s Award winning artist Rebecca Belmore, opens September 8 at 7 p.m. at Platform, with an artist talk the next day at 2 p.m. “Floe Edge,” an exhibition of contemporary art and collaborations from Nunavut including Shuvinai Ashoona, Raven Chacon and Ningeokuluk Teevee, among others, opens at Urban Shaman on September 8 at 8 p.m. Yael Brotman’s “Waterfront” opens September 9 at Martha Street Studio.


A variety of art installations hit the streets of Hamilton during Supercrawl September 8 to 10—watch for work by Shelley Niro and Thea Jones, among others.

On September 8 from 7 to 10 p.m., the Assembly hosts an opening reception for Melissa Neil’s “smoking lake” and ​Margaret Flood’s “Something Round.” Deborah Koenker opens “Grapes and Tortillas” at the Workers Arts & Heritage Centre on September 8 from 7 to 9 p.m.


Orphan oil wells get the contemporary-art treatment in Alana Bartol’s “In Blood and Bone,” opening September 8 at 7 p.m. at Truck.

Michael Smith‘s exhibition “Descry” is celebrated with a reception at Trépanier Baer on September 8 from 6 to 8 p.m.

Herringer Kiss Gallery is debuting two exhibitions this week: Curtis Cutshaw’s “50” and Oksana Kryzhanivska’s “Metamorphosis,” curated by Marjan Eggermont in the HK Incubator. There will be an opening reception with artists in attendance September 7 from 5 to 8 p.m.

Chad Erpelding‘s “Taking Stock,” based on the TSX, opens September 8 from 7 to 9 p.m. at Alberta Printmakers.


Governor General’s Award winning artist Robert Fones is featured in a solo exhibition opening at Museum London on September 9. Also at the museum on September 7 from 7:30 to 9 p.m.: launch of a new biography of Greg Curnoe by James King.

“What is Left? What is Right?” also opens September 8 from 7 to 10 p.m. at Forest City Gallery; the show of 13 Canadian women artists is co-curated by Christina Battle and Jenna Faye Powell.

Quebec City

“Achromatopsie” is an exhibition opening September 8 at 6 p.m. at l’Oeil de Poisson. It includes art by Sylvain Bouthillette, Marie-Andrée Godin and Hugo Nadeau, among others.

Joan Fontcuberta and Katia Gosselin are featured in exhibitions at Centre Vu; vernissages are September 8 at 6 p.m.


Stardust, an interactive new media installation by Chowaniec Projects, opens September 13 from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m. at Wall Space Gallery’s project space.


Artwork by Cameron Forbes and Sandra Ledingham is featured in an exhibition at The Gallery/art placement opening September 7 from 7 to 9 p.m.


On September 8, Laura Kenney and Steven Rhude present the exhibition “Saving Maud” at Secord Gallery, featuring contemporary tributes to Maud Lewis. There will be an opening reception from 7 to 9 p.m.

September 8 from 6 to 9 p.m., Hermes will host an opening reception for an exhibition of works by Chad Jagoe and Michael Fuller. The Dalhousie Art Gallery also recently opened an exhibition of recent acquisitions that is worth a look, especially a photo series by Dana Claxton.


A Casual Reconstruction is a work by Nadia Myre that is informed by a dinner conversation she had with friends of Indigenous or mixed ancestry in Mi’kmaq territory. In this scripted performance, happening September 8 at 8 p.m. at Open Space, seven non-Indigenous people (actors) re-enact, perform and inhabit the voices of First Nation people while they discuss identity and living within Indigenous, Anglophone and francophone cultures.

Daniel Laskarin is featured in an exhibition at Deluge Contemporary starting on September 8 from 7 to 10 p.m.


Evans Contemporary presents a show of new paintings by Shelley Adler opening September 8 from 6 to 11 p.m. It’s part of an art crawl that evening across several Peterborough galleries.


Travis McEwen‘s “The Arch: Plans for a Heterotopic Space Opera” and Evergon + Jean-Jacques Ringuette‘s “Two Old Friends Play Chess” open at dc3 art projects on September 8 at 6 p.m.

Also notable in closings: the Alberta Biennial wraps up this week, September 10, at the Art Gallery of Alberta. (Read our review for insights.)

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

This article was corrected on September 7, 2017. The original stated that Aaditya Aggarwal curated a program at TSV rather than wrote the essay.

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