August 7 – September 5, 2004
At the Toronto Centre for the Arts, 5040 Yonge St.
Opening reception, TUESDAY, AUGUST 17 from 5 to 8 p.m.
Bob Boyer Dana Claxton Ruth Cuthand Edward Poitras
Faye HeavyShield Ron Noganosh Robert Houle
Curated by Lee-Ann Martin.
The Museum of Contemporary Canadian Art, (MOCCA), is pleased to present A History Lesson – Contemporary Aboriginal Art from the collection of the MacKenzie Art Gallery, guest curated by Lee-Ann Martin and taking place in our North York galleries from August 7 to September 5, 2004. In collaboration with the MacKenzie Art Gallery, A History Lesson will be included in the multi-venue Planet IndigenUs festival, organized by Harbourfront Centre and the Woodland Cultural Centre, at various venues in and around Toronto from August 13 – 22, 2004.
At MOCCA, the exhibition will be an expanded version of A History Lesson, originally curated by Martin, and presented at the MacKenzie Art Gallery, Regina, ( May 17 – August 24, 2003 ), which focussed on four artists from Saskatchewan – Bob Boyer, Dana Claxton, Ruth Cuthand, Edward Poitras – with works drawn from that gallery’s permanent collection. Works also from the MacKenzie’s collection by Faye HeavyShield, Ron Noganosh and Robert Houle will be included in this expanded presentation.
This exhibition invites an understanding of historical events that have been ignored or misinterpreted for too long through the perspectives of contemporary Aboriginal artists. Their works speak to ancient and recent concerns that underscore the shared history between non-Aboriginal and First Nations cultures. At the heart of these cultural tensions are two conflicting frameworks: the rights of Aboriginal peoples to self-determination and recognition versus the imposed structures of governments, churches, law enforcement agencies and the military.
A History Lesson will also mark an exciting yet bittersweet moment for the Museum of Contemporary Canadian Art, as this will be the final exhibition in our North York venue, in the Toronto Centre for the Arts. In September 2004, MOCCA will relocate its facilities to the downtown core of Toronto to enhance our ability to make substantial contributions to the Canadian and international cultural discourse. We hope that you will share our enthusiasm for our future activities by keeping abreast of our developments and the exciting programs we have planned. Consult our website or contact us for additional information. www.mocca.toronto.on.ca
A History Lesson is supported by Canada Council for the Arts, Government of Canada, Harbourfront Centre, MacKenzie Art Gallery, Ontario Arts Council, Woodland Cultural Centre.