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News / November 2, 2017

News in Brief: Fear of a Closure at ACAD, and More

A key Canadian art school might be “an institution on the verge of unsustainability.” Plus: Award wins for Jana Sterbak and Kent Monkman. 
The Alberta College of Art and Design. Photo: Facebook. The Alberta College of Art and Design. Photo: Facebook.

Our editors’ weekly roundup of art news.

The Alberta College of Art and Design is fending off reports of precarity and possible closure. The CBC recently obtained a report that described ACAD as “an institution on the verge of unsustainability.” On Wednesday, ACAD president Daniel Doz held a town hall with students about the issue; the meeting was closed to media. Doz tells CBC, “Things are really good this year..”But it is our responsibility to look at the future—and one of the key components is really how we manage our finances.” The CBC reports more than $6 million has been spent on consultant fees at the college in recent years, a figure the faculty are objecting to. The school was founded in 1926, and prominent ACAD alumni include Alex Janvier, Geoff McFetridge, Jeremy Tankard and Elaine Cameron-Weir. (CBC Calgary)

Jana Sterbak has won the 2017 Prix Paul-Émile Borduas, Quebec’s highest distinction for the visual arts. The artist’s career spans more than 40 years: she’s most widely known for the meat dress—Vanitas: Flesh Dress for an Albino Anorectic (1987)—and she represented Canada at the 2003 Venice Biennale. Her sculpture, installation, video and performance works have been presented in major exhibitions at the National Gallery of Canada, London’s Serpentine Gallery, the Museum of Contemporary Art of Chicago and others. Her works are in numerous international collections, such as the Centre Georges Pompidou and the Walker Art Center. In 2012, she received a Governor General’s Award in Visual and Media Arts.

The 2017 Ontario Premier’s Awards for Excellence in the Arts are out. The winners were announced Tuesday night in a ceremony at Canada’s National Ballet School in Toronto. Kent Monkman won the $35,000 individual arts award. The emerging artist of the year award, a $15,000 prize, went to Brian Rideout, a Toronto-based representational painter. Debajehmujig Storytellers, Canada’s first and only professional theatre company located on a reserve, won $50,000 in the arts organization category. (press release)

The Royal BC Museum has opened a major exhibition of First Nations art in Bogota. The Museo del Oro loaned the Royal BC Museum a selection of stunning pre-Hispanic gold artefacts from Colombia that became a gallery-within-a-gallery for the feature exhibition “Gold Rush!” in 2015. “First Nations Masterworks from BC” is the Royal BC Museum’s response: a loan of treasures, equally priceless in material and cultural significance. It includes works by Charles Edenshaw, Bill Reid and Susan Point, among others. (The City Paper Bogota)

Stuart Keeler has been hired as senior art curator at TD Bank. Recently, Keeler worked at the City of Mississauga as managing director and curator of its museums division, and as executive director and curator at the Art Gallery of Mississauga. (press release)

Is Vancouver a new music-video must? A music video filmed entirely in Vancouver by Twice, a nine-member Korean pop group, has racked up almost 21 million views since its release on Monday. The music video shows the singers in several classic Vancouver locations, including Stanley Park, Gastown, the White Rock Pier and a trip on the SkyTrain, making the video “recognizably Vancouver,” a UBC professor who teaches courses on pop music told the CBC. This could foretell a new era of Vancouver-based pop music videos, says CBC. (CBC News)