(we really really liked the new Art Gallery of Ontario)

-Lorna Mills & Sally McKay

- L.M. 11-14-2008 7:10 am

how did you get the exclusive invite? we are going tomorrow
- anthony (guest) 11-14-2008 8:24 am

They threw a big artist party last night. I hadn't seen any media images of the Gallery Italia (the big woody hall) previous to walking into it so I was just blown away at the sight of it.
- L.M. 11-14-2008 2:51 pm

Last night was a very big deal for me cause I played with blingee for the very first time. Also, the new AGO is lovely. As I wandered around I didn't even see the Ken Thomson wing. And while I heard from a venerable Toronto curator that it is very nice, I'm glad it's not shoved in your face front and centre. Also, Lothar Baumgarten's embarrassing Monument to the Native People of Ontario seems to be gone from Walker Court. Cudos to the curatorial team for that decision! There are some awkward moments in the contemporary galleries (like a tiny little room for "Feminist Art" as if pretty well all art since the 70s wasn't somehow inflected with feminism) but unlike the new ROM, the architecture works in favour of exhibitions. The grand spaces and the intimate spaces flow into one another, and it was easy for us to get pleasantly lost, then pop out into something truly stunning like the douglas fir gallery. Walking up and down the external curvy staircase at the back, I imagined the ghosts of the Boulton family rising up from The Grange below to hover petulantly outside the windows wondering why they weren't invited to the 21st Century gala. Take that Boultons! You guys were awful.

And now... More Blingee! This is the AGO's l'il architecture buddy, seen from the external staircase windows.

Alsop & AGO

- sally mckay 11-14-2008 4:01 pm

I updated the front post credit so it didn't look like I made all the blingees.

I also felt sort of silly last night when I tried on that strapless red gown, but now I see that it was totally appropriate, because I got to dance with everyone.
- L.M. 11-14-2008 4:19 pm

One of the two men in the bottom image is the AGO director, Mathew Teitelbaum, who will probably now call security next time he sees us stalking him. And, of course, Canadians should recognize the lovely picture of the ho artist Sandra Rechico and her pimp artist, Andrew Harwood.
- L.M. 11-14-2008 4:39 pm

No worries L.M., my noobish blinging pales next to your finely honed expertise, and I am simply honoured to be blinging in your company.
- sally mckay 11-14-2008 4:49 pm

I showed Blingee to my class (that's what passes for university instruction in my tiny world) and sent them to the blingee work of the awesome Olia Lialina. (it's like an Ice Dance thing and Canadians & Russians can really get behind that sort of stuff)
- L.M. 11-14-2008 5:52 pm

blingee, baby ......
some of us have aging machines ....
don't slow us down .....

- ThE bRu (guest) 11-15-2008 3:26 am

I missed the opening because I needed to continue researching for a thesis I am preparing. This was my first glimpse and I can't think of a better one. Thank-you for those gifs! they are an occasion and even possibly historic.
- zach (guest) 11-15-2008 3:55 am

sorry ThE bRu! With all that glittery shiny it's hard not to pile it on.
- sally mckay 11-15-2008 4:58 am

Thanks Zack.

There was a lot of positive responses to the reno, (almost a rebuild) especially when you consider that most people were cynical after the ROM's architectural disaster, ("That fucking carbuncle growing out of the ROM") and our impatience with the AGO's strange compulsion to rip the building down every few decades and raise money for a new one. (We really thought that we would be making fun of some big mess, but we turned them into Blingees of Love)

I had been underwhelmed with the outer front facade design until I walked into the Big Woody Hall, then it all made sense.

Sally is right about the wee feminist room, when I first saw it, Janet Morton was standing in the middle of it with her baby, and a WTF? look on her face. (total comedy gold)

- L.M. 11-15-2008 4:45 pm

how many times have I been called a ho on this site I wonder
- SR 11-15-2008 5:57 pm

Thanks for the blingee! I'm looking forward to seeing the revamped digs. Nice to hear your take on the space. Harwood in a suit? Things really have been revamped.

- thom (guest) 11-15-2008 8:01 pm

He looked amazing, just like an Eastern European mobster.

And Sandra I forgot to call you a ho when I posted about your show w/Gwen at Mercer. (so I shall rectify that immediately.)

- L.M. 11-15-2008 8:45 pm

Speaking of Sandra and Gwen's show, nice review in the Globe and Mail today by Gary Dault! And Sarah Milroy got all political about museology in her take on the AGO - whoo-hoo. A rare good Globe day for art coverage.
- sally mckay 11-15-2008 9:04 pm

Milroy review, Dault review
- L.M. 11-15-2008 10:20 pm

My burning question: Is the outdoor Henry Moore back on the corner where it belongs?
- M.Jean 11-17-2008 1:16 pm

yup. Even the indoor ones (the "bone room" as L.M. called it) are still the same.
- sally mckay 11-17-2008 2:40 pm

I frankly couldn't care less about the indoor ones, but I'm besotted with the one outdoors. I'm so glad to hear it's back.
- M.Jean 11-17-2008 3:08 pm

that fantastic rainbow neon time based peice (who i never figured out who it was by) that was at the back of the ago, facing china town, is no longer there.

- anthony (guest) 11-21-2008 10:23 am

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