Thursday, January 1, 2009

First day of 2009 at the AGO

If you live in the Toronto area or visit the city you must, and I emphasize MUST, visit the new Art Gallery of Ontario. We decided to start our year with a visit today and we came away tired but thoroughly impressed with the new building and the collection on display. Toronto has finally joined the world of great art galleries. Matthew Teitelbaum, Frank Gehry and the late Ken Thomson must all be congratulated on what has been achieved here. I wouldn't know where to start with the praises. The building is beautiful. And it works. It invites, it holds the art well, beautifully in fact. The building is art. And the art inside is captivating in it's breadth and beauty.

I admit I am a sucker for the Group of Seven, and the collection is beautifully rich in works. The section on drawing is wonderful. The curators have done an excellent job of hanging, with the flow of one area into the next feeling like going from one section of a marvelous treasure cave to the next. But a cave it definitely is not since the rooms feel open and yet intimate at the same time. We bought memberships so that we can return again and again, and so we will.

The visit cannot help but inspire. I wanted to return and draw, but since I will leave that to tomorrow I've posted a small sketch from my Ungava works that was inspired not by a gallery, but by the land itself.

Happy 2009! It feels good.