GROUPS

Private Group Tours and Workshops

The McMichael offers a suite of virtual and in-person experiences to inspire your friends, family and colleagues with the art of Canada! Whether you’re planning a corporate meeting, birthday party or wine-and-cheese event, add an artistic touch with a paid private guided tour of one of our current exhibitions or have your guests explore their creative side with an in-studio workshop. All tours are led by an experienced McMichael docent. 

Our interactive and inspiring programs will rejuvenate and entertain your group.

Booking Details & Inquiries:

The booking process can be started quickly and easily by completing the Inquiry Form below.  Once submitted, McMichael staff will follow up to confirm all booking details.

Virtual Adults Group Tours

Indigenous Art at the McMichael

This virtual overview of Indigenous art at the McMichael, including iconic works from past and current exhibitions, will highlight the cultural and stylistic diversity of Indigenous artists, while addressing the common challenges experienced by their communities, such as Canadian policies of cultural assimilation, the residential school system and forced displacement.

“A Like Vision”: The Group of Seven at 100

Enjoy this virtual guided tour of “A Like Vision”: The Group of Seven at 100, which celebrates the centenary of the Group of Seven’s 1920 inaugural exhibition. Explore popular masterpieces and hidden gems by every member of the Group, revisit old favourites and experience new surprises.

Private In-Person Group Visits

Bring your group to experience the spirit of Canada at the McMichael. We will be thrilled to plan a day that meets your group’s interests, providing a unique art-viewing experience in a natural setting. Choose a tour of the permanent collection or special exhibitions, enjoy an art workshop or a presentation. Customized itineraries with specially tailored workshops can be arranged for groups of 10 or more.

 

In-Person Adult Gallery Tours

Introduction to the McMichael Tours 

Discover what’s new at the McMichael with one of the following in-person tours. Each tour provides an overview of artworks, great for guests new to the gallery and for frequent visitors wanting to revisit their favourite artists and artworks.

 

McMichael Highlights

This in-person engagement of the permanent collection focuses on the most important aspects of the McMichael’s art of Canada collection, such as the paintings of Group of Seven and their contemporaries, modern Inuit, and Indigenous art, as well as more recent contemporary artistic movements.

 

Special Exhibition Tours 

Looking for a tour on a specific artist? Choose from the following special exhibitions to create a customized tour suited to the interest of your group:

William Kurelek: Jewish Life in Canada

This tour explores the work of beloved Ukrainian Canadian painter William Kurelek (1927–1977) and will focus on the McMichael’s major new acquisition of Kurelek’s suite of 16 paintings entitled Jewish Life in Canada. Painted in the mid-1970s, Kurelek intended the suite as a gesture across the cultural divide, implicitly demonstrating his open-mindedness toward Canadians of cultural and religious backgrounds different from his own. Please note: a tour of the Tom Thomson gallery is available as a 30-minute add-on to the “A Like Vision” tour. 

Gathie Falk: Revelations

Explore piles of fruit, floating cabbages, and expanses of brightly coloured flowerbeds by of one of Canada’s most visionary and experimental artists, Gathie Falk. Discover these manifestations of Falk’s rampant imagination through her exploration of the disciplines of painting, ceramic, performance art and installation over the span of a half century. 

Wanda Koop: Lightworks

This tour shines a light on the masterful painter of light and colour. Wanda Koop’s work has engaged with abstraction since her earliest days, and in her more recent paintings she explores colour and light as subjects in themselves, masterfully engineering her canvases through the application of dozens of layers of deftly controlled pigment. The resulting surfaces seem to glow from within, suggesting euphoric states of vision. This tour will also cover Koop’s Light Sticks—a suite of long, thin shaped works that bear strips of intense colour and patterning, arranged sculpturally against the wall—a breakthrough into the third dimension. 

Elisapee Ishulutaq: My World

Delve into the world of Elisapee Ishulutaq’s epic oil stick drawings of life in and around Pangnirtung, Nunavut, which draw us deeply into her way of seeing, transmitting an indelible view of life in the Arctic seen through her unique lens. Large panoramic drawings provide holistic views of life in the hamlet of Pangnirtung, while smaller works evoke the dazzling world of birds in flight, boats at sea, or the inky back expanses of the night sky in the depths of winter. Intriguing, too, are her hybrid scenes in which Arctic realities are counterbalanced by imagery from an imaginary south—and the unexpected appearances of elephants or leafy trees.

In-Person Adult Art Workshops

 

Watercolour Painting Studio

Explore the medium of watercolour paint with a McMichael instructor who will guide your group through techniques, tips and tricks to create their own unique artwork. Choose from the following themes to focus artmaking on specific genre or painting skill: seasonal landscape painting, still life or colour theory. 

Acrylic Painting Studio

Follow along with a McMichael Instructor as they guide your group through the steps of making a creative acrylic painting. Painting techniques and methods will be put into practice with the creation of your own artwork. Choose from the following themes to guide your artmaking: explore the genre of landscape painting, try your hand at a still life, or dive deeper into colour exploration by focusing on colour theory. 

Oil Pastel Studio

Engage with the versatile medium of oil pastels with an experienced McMichael Instructor to create your own artwork inspired by your choice of theme. Explore how oil pastels can transform a still life, express a seasonal landscape, or help develop your sense of colour theory with this creative and expressive medium. 

Art & Nature Meditation Workshop

This unique stress-relieving outdoor/indoor workshop is inspired by the Japanese tradition of shinrin yoku (forest bathing). The workshop begins with a silent meditation walk on the McMichael’s grounds, combined with en plein air sketching activities. Back in the studio, participants will reflect on their outdoor experience by using their preliminary sketch to create a polished painting during an instructor-led watercolour workshop. 

In Person Adult Outdoor Programs

Outdoor Discovery Tour

This accessible stroll will cover several historic landmarks of the McMichael’s grounds, such as the original McMichael home, Thomson Shack and Cemetery, as well as outdoor sculptures and art installations. The conversation will revolve around the presence and legacy of various Indigenous communities in the Humber River Valley corridor known as The Carrying Place Trail, and address the cultural and environmental impact of the settler politics. Guests will also explore Signe and Robert McMichael’s vision of the grounds surrounding their home from the perspective of their planting and outdoor art strategy. The tour will stop at the newly named Minokamik Garden to introduce a new ecological approach in the cultivation and maintenance of the gallery grounds.

Art & Nature, Well-being Workshop*

Based on a direct interaction with art and nature, this workshop encourages relaxation along with art and nature appreciation. Participants will enjoy a short silent meditation walk/observation on the gallery grounds followed by a discussion circle and an en plein air sketching activity will allow participants to reflect on their observations.

*Please note, this program can be adapted to accommodate any individuals living with cognitive and/or mobility needs.

Picnic Permits

To host a group of 10 or more people on our grounds, you will have to purchase a Picnic Permit.

To start the conversation about how to create the perfect programming according to your group’s interests, please contact our Sales Manager, Angela Poletto at 905.893.1121 ext. 2536 or by email

Current & Upcoming Exhibitions

“A Like Vision”:
The Group of Seven at 100

January 25, 2020 - August 21, 2022

From Water to Water: A Way Through the Trees

October 13, 2021 - February 28, 2023

William Kurelek: Jewish Life in Canada

April 12, 2022 - August 21, 2023

Wanda Koop: Lightworks

May 21 - Nov 20