A Legend in Canadian Art
Story by Katherine Fawcett
Gathie Falk - 8 Red Boots
1973, red-glazed ceramic in painted-plywood-and-glass cabinet
C anadian artist Gathie Falk has been an innovator and a visionary for more than six decades. The incredible diversity of her artwork, whether in painting, ceramic and bronze sculpture, photography, or video, celebrates certain domestic and everyday themes. Bronzed apples. Ceramic cabbages, seemingly floating in mid-air. Flower beds, blooming. Shoes, showcased. Falk’s work has a whimsical and experimental quality, yet with her brilliant conceptual flips, she defies expectations and inspires new ways of understanding and seeing.
Falk, now in her nineties, was raised in central Canada by Russian Mennonite immigrant parents. Her art reflects a background of hard work in an agrarian landscape, creatively combined with the legacies of Surrealism and Pop art. Think of Andy Warhol but with a feminist, Mennonite, Canadian Prairies twist.
“This is a real opportunity for us to celebrate the range of her production over time,” said Curtis Collins, Audain Art Museum’s Director and Chief Curator. Viewers will see such iconic pieces as The Problem with Wedding Veils, 8 Red Boots, Chair with Fish and Pink Ribbon, Red Angel, and Picnic with Dog.
Falk currently lives in Vancouver, and has received countless accolades, including the Audain Prize for Lifetime Achievement in Visual Arts, the Order of Canada, and the Governor General's Award in Visual and Media Arts.
Revelations, a touring exhibition of Falk’s work, will be displayed at the AAM from Nov. 25, 2023, to May 6, 2024. This show provides a unique opportunity to experience Falk’s astonishing canon of work in the venerated gallery, one of only two venues in Western Canada. The exhibition is curated by Sarah Milroy, Chief Curator of the McMichael Canadian Art Collection. audainartmuseum.com
Post Featured Image:
Gathie Falk - Picnic with Dog
c. 1976, ceramic, paint media