On November 19, the Ontario Associate of Art Galleries (OAAG) will host the OAAG Awards, an event that “celebrates and recognizes the exhibitions, publications, and programming of Ontario’s public art galleries over the past year.”
Far and Near: the Distance(s) between Us — curated by Henry Heng Lu (MVS 2017) as part of his Master of Visual Studies degree — is on the short list for Exhibition of the Year (Budget Under $20,000 Thematic). Lu’s exhibition ran last year from September 6 to October 9 at the University of Toronto’s Art Museum.
Far and Near: the Distance(s) between Us offered different perspectives on the Chinese Canadian community’s historical and cultural evolutions by “exploring notions of distancing and being distanced in relation to race, identity, sexuality and their relation with Chinese Canadian history.”
The idea of distance unfolds in multiple layers: in the geographic sense, as in going through a distance from point A to point B, like the construction process of the Canadian Pacific Railway; in the cultural sense, through the mainstream’s imposition of stereotypes, as in how the Chinese Canadian community has been culturally differentiated and essentialized; and in the context of the Chinese community itself, as in who is “Us”, and the distances between different groups of ethnic Chinese.
The exhibition featured works by Alvis Choi aka Alvis Parsley, Chun Hua Catherine Dong, Gu Xiong, Will Kwan, Ho Tam, Ken Lum, Morris Lum, Karen Tam, Chih-Chien Wang, Paul Wong, and Winnie Wu.
The Art Museum, comprising two galleries located just steps apart — the Justina M. Barnicke Gallery at Hart House, and the University of Toronto Art Centre at University College — is one of the largest gallery spaces for visual art exhibitions and programming in Toronto and a vital cultural resource and destination for arts and academic communities world wide.
The 41st OAAG Awards Gala takes place at the Harbourfront Centre on Monday, November 19, at 6pm. Winners will be announced live during the ceremony.