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Jackson’s Wars: A.Y. Jackson before the Group of Seven

This rare examination of the work of painter Alexander Young (A.Y.) Jackson (1882–1974) in the decade before the Group of Seven’s formation in 1920. Curated by historian Douglas Hunter, Jackson’s Wars will feature rarely seen paintings made during the artist’s trips abroad to study painting in Italy, Belgium, and France, as well as his evocative depictions of rural Quebec and Ontario made upon his return. Of particular note will be a handpicked selection of Jackson’s paintings made during the First World War depicting the devastation of the battlefields in France, which would have a lingering impact on his interpretations of the Canadian landscape. Jackson’s Wars: A.Y. Jackson before the Group of Seven provides an opportunity to reframe the legacy of one of Canada’s most significant artists.

River of Dreams: Impressionism on the St. Lawrence

In the late 19th century, the Impressionist movement found a footing in Canada, and Quebec artists quickly responded with works of rare beauty and sophistication. Many Quebec artists trained in France during this period, carrying the pollen of European modernism back with them to Canadian soil. Landscape and city scenes were staples of their work, and this show will assemble a choice collection of master works that trace a journey from the bustling streets of Montreal—then Canada’s financial capital—down the St. Lawrence River to Quebec City, through the beloved Charlevoix region and out to the windswept cliffs of the Gaspé Peninsula. The exhibition will offer not just a magisterial statement on the outstanding quality of Quebec painting, but also a glimpse into the heart and soul of a culture, seen through the eyes of her most beloved and foundational artists. The survey will include works by William Brymner, Ozias Leduc, James Wilson Morrice, Henrietta Mabel May, Marc-Aurèle de Foy Suzor-Coté, Maurice Cullen, Clarence Gagnon, and others, and will be drawn from a host of public and private collections. To accent these works, archival photography and objects of material culture from the period will be added to deepen the viewer’s experience of the moment in which the artists were working, augmented by historic recordings drawn from Quebecois musical culture. The result will be an immersive time-travel experience like no other.

Pizandawatc / The One Who Listens / Celui qui écoute

Presenting a selection of works by Anishinaabe/French artist Caroline Monnet, this exhibition centers on a recent series of sculptures that explore language reclamation and intergenerational transmission through an engagement with the idea of land as a carrier of ancestral memory. Meaning “the one who listens” in Anishinaabemowin, the title, Pizandawatc, comes from the traditional name of Monnet’s maternal family before surnames were changed by the Oblate missionaries at Kitigan Zibi, in the Outaouais region of Quebec. The title honours the artist’s great-grandmother, Mani Pizandawatc, who was the first in her family to have her territory divided into reserves. At the same time, the title references a receptive way of being in the world, reflected throughout Monnet’s artistic practice.