Yousuf Karsh, Pablo Picasso, 1954, silver gelatin on paper, collection of the Government of Alberta

Yousuf Karsh, Pablo Picasso, 1954, silver gelatin on paper, collection of the Government of Alberta

Sled Island will provide more opportunities than usual to stumble upon fantastic visual art and, with Jodie Rose at the helm, their visual arts section has aimed a little more towards developing projects that will continue throughout the year. Others will be more momentary, like performance-based and site-specific creations, as well as stage design, pop-up shows and usual gallery spaces that have special partnerships with Sled Island. See the guide tucked in our issues, on and on their website for more details!

If chaotic Stampede flashbacks and inner-city cabin fever are closer to your current reality, it might actually be a good time to take a quick scenic jaunt to some incredibly worthwhile out-of-town galleries – and then come back for Sled!

Various Artists
Whyte Museum of the Canadian Rockies – Main Gallery (Banff)
Until June 8

If you hop out soon enough, you can catch the final week of this entertaining show, which demonstrates changing ways we’ve recorded each other and ourselves visually, from highly technical photorealistic paintings, to casual selfies. They were selected from private and museum collections, including pieces by the original museum founders. The exhibit even features fond pet portraits, like “Cerberus 1,”by Chris Flodberg. Does the “1” indicate it’s the first in a series of portraits of this dog, or the first of many dogs of this name? We may never know, unless we go.

Sovereign Acts
Various Artists
Southern Alberta Art Gallery (Lethbridge)
Until June 15

Artists Rebecca Belmore, Lori Blondeau, Robert Houle, Terrance Houle, Shelley Niro, Adrian Stimson, and Jeff Thomas each creatively address indigenous cultural identity in a present context, as shaped by factors that have both limited and emphasized certain aboriginal traditions throughout history. Finding new ways to present these complexities, they are able to communicate in highly contemporary ways, different glimpses of how aboriginal culture is “performed.”

Rage Against Beige V
Various artists
Rabbit Hole Gallery (Basement of the Emporium of Impossible Things (Okotoks)
Until June 21

Not to be confused with the Gopher Hole museum! Tucked away in the basement of a popular antique shop is this bright gallery space showcasing high-quality paintings by several artists with more of a focus on abstracted, colourful landscapes, breezy florals and thoughtfully rendered portraiture. Included are pieces by artists like Aaron Sidorenko, featuring characters with eyes that fizz and twinkle magnetically, and Maryanne Jespersen, who relays familiar landscapes in blocks of dabbed-on citrusy tones amongst linear strokes of grass that recall Group of Seven precursors.

By Cait Lepla

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