Temporary exhibition

30 January 2014 — 1 June 2014

Kent Monkman – Welcome to the Studio


This exhibition has ended

Discover internationally renowned contemporary artist Kent Monkman and his latest artistic work, inspired by the McCord Museum collection.

This original installation, which focuses on the relationship between photography and painting, will plunge you into the world of photographer William Notman as well as that of painter Gustave Courbet, leader of the realist movement.

Welcome to the Studio, a work comprised of more than 30 portraits by Notman, was inspired by the celebrated Courbet work The Artist’s Studio – A real allegory summing up seven years of my artistic and moral life (1855), viewed by many as a manifesto of 19th century realism.

Visitors are invited to take part in an immersive experience by placing themselves in the middle of the work to view their own self-portrait, then by sharing this self-portrait on social media networks, using #WTTS.

Purchasing the work

The McCord Museum is seeking to purchase Welcome to the Studio: An Allegory for Artistic Reflection and Transformation, the artwork created by Canadian artist Kent Monkman as part of the Museum’s Artist in Residence program. The work is currently on exhibition at the Museum. To acquire the work, the McCord Museum is calling on Montrealers, Friends of the Museum, to help it raise the necessary funds. A generous donor has already confirmed he is prepared to contribute.

Created as an homage to Montreal, the work focuses on the relationship between photography and painting, a theme central to both the Notman studio’s activities and the history of photography in the 19th century. For these reasons and to take advantage of this opportunity to show is Notman Photographic Archives collection in a new light, it is important for the Museum to retain and permanently display this work.

Visitors wishing to be part of the initiative are invited to leave a donation in one of the boxes set up for this purpose as they exit the exhibition hall or at the McCord Museum ticket office. It is also possible to make a donation of $50 or more by calling 514-398-7100, extension 237, in order to receive a tax receipt.

About the artist

Kent Monkman is an artist of Cree ancestry who works in a variety of media, including painting, film/video, performance and installation.

Monkman enjoys depicting various power relationships, which he reverses and often completely upends. At the heart of his artistic practice are the representation of identities, notably Aboriginal, and the construction of historical narratives. His use of irony and his many visual art history references create a new order where reality and fantasy merge.

The artist has been featured in many solo and group exhibitions in galleries and major museums in Canada and abroad.

Kent Monkman lives and works in Toronto. Click here to learn more.

About the Artist-in-residence program

Artist-in-residence, a McCord Museum program, invites contemporary artists to explore and interact with the Museum’s collections to create a work for display in a temporary solo exhibition. The program allows the Museum to present its collections from new perspectives by associating history with the fine arts and the past with the present.

What people are saying about it

« The Canadian artist's latest work, as part of the McCord Museum's Artist-in-Residence program, is a stunning, enigmatic study of the intricate relationship between painting and photography. » Katia Jean Paul, KatiaJeanPaul.com

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