Many Lives Mark This Place
March 7 – June 7, 2020
About The Exhibition
In 2014, Ontario-based painter and printmaker John Hartman (b. 1950) embarked on a project to capture the intimate relationship between more than thirty leading Canadian authors and the places that inspire them. Hartman’s diverse roster of subjects included writers Esi Edugyan, Ruth Ozeki, M.G. Vassanji, Thomas King, Lisa Moore, Neil Bissoondath, Susan Swan and David Macfarlane. The result was a body of large-format portrait paintings that celebrate the richness of Canada’s literary fabric. The McMichael is pleased to debut John Hartman: Many Lives Mark This Place, a special exhibition celebrating the artist’s efforts organized by the Woodstock Art Gallery.
Many Lives Mark this Place will feature approximately thirty large-scale paintings from Hartman’s portraits series and a selection of large landscape paintings that showcase the artist’s recognized skill for depicting nature. Through powerfully uniting the parallel fields of literature and visual art, Hartman underscores our collective desire to take inspiration and celebrate Canada from coast to coast. The portraits speak to the power of the imagination in experiencing – physically, emotionally and philosophically – the diverse landscapes of our country and the stories that they hold.
Many Lives Mark This Place will be accompanied by a series of public literary discussion panels with the featured writers led by McMichael Chief Curator Sarah Milroy. An accompanying exhibition catalogue will be available at the Gallery Shop and features colour plate reproductions paired with written responses by each of Hartman’s subjects.
For media inquiries and more information, please visit the Press Room.
John Hartman, b. 1950 Neil Bissoondath beside the St Lawrence River, 2018 oil on linen 40 x 46 inches Courtesy Nicholas Metivier Gallery, Toronto