May 20 to September 10, 2017
Opening Reception | May 19, 2017
This retrospective presents more than five decades of Alex Janvier’s remarkable paintings and drawings, spanning from early in the artist’s career in the 1960s to the present day. It consists of more than a hundred of his most impressive works, drawn from public and private collections across Canada, and features his best-known pieces alongside those that rarely have been seen. Works on paper, canvas and linen range in scale but are consistent in their unique approach to representing a Dene geocultural landscape. A long-time resident of Cold Lake First Nations in northern Alberta, Janvier combines Denesuline iconography and modernist abstraction in his paintings to express a personal aesthetic that relates to his physical and cultural surroundings. Janvier’s graceful abstractions also include representational imagery that references an ancient past, more recent histories of Aboriginal peoples and his experience of the effects of colonization and residential schools. The exhibition celebrates this extraordinary artist’s lifetime of creativity, knowledge and perspective gained from his love of the land, art and Dene culture.
Organized by the National Gallery of Canada