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WINTER EXHIBITIONS LAUNCH

Thursday 18 January 2018
Members’ Preview: 5–6 pm
Public Reception: 6–7:30 pm

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Celebrate four new exhibitions at the Agnes’s Winter Season Launch on Thursday 18 January: Shame and Prejudice: A Story of Resilience: A Project by Kent Monkman; The Powers of Women: Female Fortitude in European Art; Log Cabin: A Canadian Quilt and “He First Brought It to Perfection”: John Smith and the Mezzotint in Early Modern England. These shows run 6 January through 8 April 2018.


FEATURE EXHIBITION

Kent Monkman’s Shame and Prejudice: A Story of Resilience was created as a response to Canada 150 sesquicentennial celebrations. Monkman’s gender bending, time travelling alter-ego, Miss Chief Eagle Testickle is the guide on a journey through Canada’s history that starts in the present and takes us back to a hundred and fifty years before Confederation. Miss Chief leads us through the harsh urban environment of Winnipeg’s north end and contemporary life on the reserve, and all the way back to the period of New France and the fur trade, addressing some of the darkest chapters of Canada’s past and narrating a story of Canada through the lens of First Nations’ resilience.

As both artist and curator of the exhibition, Monkman places his own paintings, drawings and sculptural works in dialogue with historical artifacts and artworks borrowed from museum and private collections from across the country.

This circulating exhibition was produced by the Art Museum at the University of Toronto in partnership with the Confederation Centre Art Gallery, Charlottetown, and has been made possible in part by the Government of Canada and the Ontario Arts Council. Lead Sponsor: Donald R. Sobey Family Foundation. The Agnes thanks: The George Taylor Richardson Memorial Fund, Queen’s University.


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FEMALE FORTITUDE IN EUROPEAN ART

While the fathers of Christianity cautioned against the seductive power of the feminine sex in the fourth century, it was in the early Renaissance that the literary and visual theme of women channeling their sexuality into action spread across Europe. Beginning with Phyllis and growing to encompass such protagonists as Delilah, Judith, Salome and Bathsheba, the “power of women” theme served as a fascinating platform for the expression of female empowerment and male folly. The advent of the Protestant Reformation in the early sixteenth century added new dimensions to the theme’s momentum, incorporating such imagery as Adam and Eve, forceful housewives dominating their husbands, and sinister witches. All manifestations of the theme, however, spring from the idea that female sexuality is fundamentally dangerous.

The Powers of Women expands upon this theme to consider how female fortitude was visualized in early modern Europe. It considers the virtues, imperfections and desires of these biblical and mythological characters within the framework of social norms of the period. It interrogates the historic conventions of female agency and prompts us to measure them against our own.


A CANADIAN QUILT

The Log Cabin quilt is as distinctive in design as it is in versatility. Strips of fabric, or “logs,” are stitched around a square “hearth” to form a block, or “cabin.” Depending on how logs are pieced and blocks arranged, a Log Cabin can take varied forms, such as Barn Raising, Straight Furrow, Sunshine and Shadow, and Pineapple. In the nineteenth century, the Log Cabin quilt pattern was described as “Canadian patchwork,” evoking the colonial homestead. Log Cabin quilts, however, have broad cultural presence—as a nexus of trade networks, artistic exchange, community building and contemporary expression. Featuring quilts from the Heritage Quilt Collection at the Agnes, along with special historical and contemporary works from other collections, Log Cabin reveals the many ways in which a Log Cabin can tell a story and embody meaning within regional, national and global contexts.


JOHN SMITH AND THE MEZZOTINT IN EARLY MODERN ENGLAND

The new printmaking technique of mezzotint found a modest audience in continental Europe, but, around 1700, it achieved incredible popularity in England. “He First Brought it to Perfection” focuses on the printmaker-publisher John Smith (1652–1743), who captured the market with his sophisticated mezzotint prints after Renaissance and contemporary masters. It frames his achievements within the context of the printmaking tradition in England and evinces his savviness regarding the art market.


CONTINUING EXHIBITIONS

To 8 April 2018: Stories to Tell: Africans and the Diaspora Respond to the Lang Collection.



The Agnes Etherington Art Centre is a platform for teaching and learning at Queen's University that also serves as Southeastern Ontario’s public art museum.

For further information, contact Kate Yüksel at (613) 533.2190 or kate.yuksel@queensu.ca.


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Agnes Etherington Art Centre
36 University Avenue, Queen’s University
Kingston, ON K7L 3N6
www.agnes.queensu.ca
Facebook: aeartcentre
Twitter: @aeartcentre
Instagram: @aeartcentre

Agnes Etherington Art Centre is an accessible venue, more details can be found here.


Image: Kent Monkman, The Scream, 2017, acrylic on canvas. Collection of the Denver Art Museum, Native Arts acquisition fund. From the exhibition Shame and Prejudice: A Story of Resilience.

Image: Jacques Ignace de Roore, Susanna and the Elders, about 1735, oil on panel. Gift of Alfred and Isabel Bader, 1985 (28-272). From the exhibition, The Powers of Women: Female Fortitude in European Art.


THE AGNES THANKS Queen’s University, the Canada Council for the Arts, Ontario Arts Council, City of Kingston Arts Fund through the Kingston Arts Council, Ontario Arts Foundation, Government of Canada, and Lloyd Carr-Harris Foundation, along with funds held at Queen’s University, including: The Bader Legacy Fund, David and Patti Bain Memorial Fund, Janet Braide Memorial Fund, Celebrating Agnes Fund, Franks Fund, Rita Friendly Kaufman Fund, Justin and Elisabeth Lang Fund, David McTavish Art Study Fund, Chancellor Richardson Memorial Fund, George Taylor Richardson Memorial Fund, John L. Russell and Gerald Brenner Fund, Iva Speers Fund for Art Education, and Stonecroft Foundation for the Arts Fund. We are grateful for the crucial ongoing support of our members, and corporate and private donors.

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