OTTAWA, Dec. 18, 2014 /CNW/ - Just in time for the holidays, the National Gallery of Canada presents two captivating new exhibitions: M.C. Escher: The Mathemagician, organized by the Gallery and the Art Gallery of Alberta, and Clocks for Seeing: Photography, Time and Motion. Both exhibitions will be on display from December 20, 2014 to May 3, 2015.
M.C. Escher: The Mathemagician features a selection of 54 remarkable works representing the different themes and areas of study that fascinated this extraordinary artist: the Italian landscape, perception, mathematics, impossible architectures and the regular division of a planar surface.
Although also a draftsman, book illustrator, tapestry pattern designer and muralist, Maurits Cornelis Escher (1898-1972) was first and foremost a printmaker. Throughout his career, which spanned from 1919 to 1969, he produced some 450 different prints. Those featured in this exhibition are the results of his experimentations with printing processes, including woodcuts, wood engravings, lithography and mezzotint. Fascinated with the geometric logic of mathematics, Escher created imaginary situations using illusion and collapsed space.
The title of the exhibition, The Mathemagician, is a neologism combining two words that usually communicate oppositional concepts—mathematics and magic. This fusion of two different ways of seeing and understanding the world is intended to capture the essentially paradoxical nature of Escher's work, with its polarities of order and chaos, reality and impossibility, perception and illusion, limit and infinity.
These extraordinary works are taken from the National Gallery of Canada's collection, the world's third largest public collection of Escher's prints, after the collections at the M.C. Escher Foundation and the National Gallery in Washington, D.C.
One of the artist's sons, George Escher, who has been in Canada since the 1950s, is responsible for the Gallery's remarkable collection, thanks to successive donations totalling nearly 230 works in the 1980s and 1990s.
Those who would like to learn more about Escher's life and musings can dive into a selection of the artist's correspondence with his son George and his daughter-in-law, published under the title Letters to Canada, 1958-1972. On sale at the NGC Bookstore and at shopngc.ca, the Gallery's online shop.
Upon exiting M.C. Escher: The Mathemagician, visitors will have the opportunity to explore another fascinating exhibition: Clocks for Seeing: Photography, Time and Motion. This exhibition features some 40 historical and contemporary photographs that encompass practices ranging from science to art. A total of 19 artists will be on display, including the famous Ilse Bing, Harold Edgerton, Henri Cartier-Bresson, Eadweard Muybridge, Michael Snow and Serge Tousignant, to name only a few.
Through their works, these photographers focus in particular on the notions of time and motion. For example, Eadweard Muybridge deconstructs the movement of a rider on his mount, while Harold Edgerton stops time at the moment of an atomic bomb's explosion, which happens too quickly for the human eye to capture.
Clocks for Seeing: Photography, Time and Motion gives visitors the opportunity to discover a variety of photography techniques used from the end of the 19th century to modern times. It also reinforces the extent to which photography can shape our perception of the world around us.
Adult art tours for the two exhibitions will be offered as of January 6, 2014.
The Annual Kathleen M. Fenwick Memorial Lecture
The life and art of M.C. Escher remembered by his son George Escher. In the Auditorium, on Thursday, March 5 at 6 pm. Ticket required: $8 (Adults), $7 (seniors and students), and $6 (Members).
NGCmagazine.ca, the National Gallery of Canada's online magazine, is a frequently updated source of information on the Canadian art world and events at the National Gallery of Canada. Correspondents from across the country provide engaging and exclusive content on historical and contemporary art in Canada. This online magazine also includes interviews with artists.
Tickets: $12 (adults); $10 (seniors and full-time students); $6 (youth: 12-19); $24 (families: two adults and three youth). Admission is free for children under the age of 12 and for Members. Includes admission to the NGC Collection.
The NGC is open Tuesday to Sunday from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m., and Thursdays until 8 p.m. Closed Mondays. Open between December 26 and 31. Closed on December 25 and January 1. For more information call 613-990-1985 or 1-800-319-ARTS.
About the National Gallery of Canada
The National Gallery of Canada is home to the most important collections of historical and contemporary Canadian art. The Gallery also maintains Canada's premier collection of European Art from the 14th to the 21st century, as well as important works of American, Asian and Indigenous Art and renowned international collections of prints, drawings and photographs. Created in 1880, the National Gallery of Canada has played a key role in Canadian culture for well over a century. Among its principal missions is to increase access to excellent works of art for all Canadians. For more information, visit gallery.ca
Images are available in the Gallery's Media Centre, through the section "For the media" at gallery.ca
SOURCE: National Gallery of Canada
For further information: For media only: Josée-Britanie Mallet, Senior Media and Public Relations Officer, National Gallery of Canada, 613.990.6835, [email protected]