In collaboration with Barbara Edwards Contemporary, the exclusive representatives of the Estate of Sorel Etrog, Winchester Galleries presents SOREL ETROG: THE EVOLUTION OF THE FIGURE, February 14 to March 18, 2017. There will be a special opening reception on Saturday, February 18 from 2:00 pm to 4:00 pm.
This exhibition includes bronze and steel figurative work that has been curated from key periods in the artist’s career including Early, Links, Screws & Bolts, Hinges and Rivets.
In his essay to accompany the exhibition, Beaverbrook Art Gallery’s Senior Curator Jeffrey Spalding notes: “Etrog’s sculpture has covered a wide range of formal territory. However, the underpinning of his aspirations aligns with the long legacy of surrealist abstracted figuration associated with Alberto Giacometti of the 1930s and Max Ernst circa 1940s. An underlying element of this aspect of surrealist sculpture is the capacity to ‘shape-shift’ or transfigure. Picasso collages together a bicycle seat and handlebars to create a ‘personification’: Bull 1942. This type of visual punning, allowing forms to simultaneously be their benign prosaic selves while also being capable of being read as a secondary form. This device is a mainstay of much tribal art, as it was with Etrog throughout his career. This mechanism permitted many witty and playful formal explorations. Most certainly Etrog’s sculpture of the early 1970s embraces this approach. He created these ‘personages’ such as Mannequin and Baluba by tinkering with common hardware store nuts, bolts, screws and wing nuts, building mock heroes from mundane, everyday materials.”
Award winning artist Sorel Etrog (1933 – 2014) is a true Canadian treasure, with a career that spanned over 50 years. Etrog represented Canada at the 1966 Venice Biennale and received many important commissions including EXPO ’67, Sunlife Centre Toronto and Olympic Park Seoul Korea. In 1968, he designed the Canadian Film Award more commonly known as the Genie Award. He has collaborated on books with Eugene Ionesco and Samuel Beckett and his film “Spiral” was shown on CBC in 1975.
Etrog was appointed Member of the Order of Canada in 1994 and was made a Chevalier of Arts and Letters by the government of France in 1996. His work resides in a number of permanent public collections including the Tate Museum in London, the Museum of Modern Art and the Solomon Guggenheim in New York, the Kunstmuseum in Basel, Musée National d’Art Modern in Paris, the Tel Aviv Museum, the Art Gallery of Ontario and the National Gallery of Canada.
Accompanying the sculpture of Sorel Etrog will be an exhibition of works on paper by Yves Gaucher, Ann Kipling, Harold Klunder, Jean McEwen and Jean Paul Riopelle.