Don Kwan

Landscape, Loss, and Legacy

February 22, 2022
 - January 22, 2023

Curators: Don Kwan; Meghan Ho and Catherine Sinclair

Firestone Reverb

Don Kwan is a queer third-generation Chinese-Canadian artist, whose work explores place, identity, representation and family memory across time. Using a multidisciplinary approach for this exhibition, Kwan engages with the City of Ottawa’s Firestone Collection of Canadian Art (FCCA).

Reflecting upon modernist depictions of landscape in Canada, Kwan explores legacies of inclusion and exclusion, rooted in land-based settler colonialism. Whether landscape, abstraction, or portraiture, 20th-century Canadian modernism, which is the basis of the FCCA, was founded at a time when discriminatory policies such as the Chinese Exclusion Act were in place, affecting the participation of Chinese-Canadian artists in artistic circles.

As such, within a process of reclamation, research and exchange with Ottawa Art Gallery (OAG) curators, Kwan brings his selection from the FCCA into dialogue with his own artistic practice, which considers family and memory. Through a discourse on iconic “Canadian” and “Chinese” images and objects, and examination of his own family’s history of more than a century in Canada, Kwan considers the question: What does it look like to belong in the Canadian landscape?

This exhibition is part of the OAG’s Firestone Reverb series, in which contemporary artists are invited to respond to the FCCA by putting new work into conversation with this well-known collection of historical art.

With support from TD Bank Group

This exhibition was realized with the support of the City of Ottawa, the Ontario Arts Council and the Canada Council for the Arts, as well as the RBC Foundation’s support of the OAG’s Connect: Artist Mentorship Program.

A Portrait of the Artist with Lantern in the Landscape, 2019, digital photograph. Photo: J. Cameron. Courtesy of Don Kwan.

 

关日安  风景、遗失及传承

关日安是一位第三代华裔加拿大同性恋画家。他的作品探索历史长河中的家庭记忆、象征、身份及地点。在本次展览中,关日安涉猎多个领域,采用了渥太华市政府的费尔斯通加拿大艺术收藏的一些画作。

通过思考现代艺术流派对加拿大风景的描写,关日安探究了包容与排斥的后果及影响,及其以土地开拓为基础的殖民主义根源。不管是风景画、抽象画或者是肖像画艺术,20世纪的加拿大现代艺术(费尔斯通加拿大艺术收藏的根基)被发现于诸如《排华法案》一类的歧视性政策存在期间。该类歧视性政策影响到了华裔加拿大艺术家对艺术圈的参与。

这种情况下,在同渥太华艺术馆馆长的研究、交流、反刍的过程中,关日安将其从费尔斯通加拿大艺术藏品中挑选的作品与他自己的艺术实践(研究家庭和记忆)结合起来进行对话。通过论述标志性的“加拿大人”和“华人”的图像和物品,以及检视他自己的家庭在加拿大一个多世纪的历史,关日安思考了这样一个问题:归属于加拿大的风景之中究竟是什么样的?

本次展览是渥太华艺术馆“费尔斯通回响”系列的一部分,该系列邀请当代画家创作与费尔斯通这一著名的历史艺术品收藏相呼应的新作品。

由关日安、Meghan Ho, Catherine Sinclair

感谢道明银行支持!

本次展出得到了以下单位的支持:渥太华市政府、安大略艺术委员会、加拿大艺术委员会;同时,感谢加拿大皇家银行基金会对渥太华艺术馆的“衔接:画家导师项目”的支持。

 

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