by Megan Bailey, Communications Specialist
George Gershwin (1898 - 1937) is often called one of the great musical geniuses of the 20th century. With a broad creative range, his music goes beyond boundaries of classical or popular music; jazz or Broadway. Gershwin’s music is truly universal and is appreciated by audiences around the world.
A year after George Gershwin composed An American in Paris, British-born artist Sybil Andrews (1898 - 1992), who came to Canada in 1947, created Concert Hall, the dynamic work chosen for the cover of the Calgary Philharmonic Orchestra’s new CD, Rhapsody in Blue: The Best of George Gershwin.
These two artists, born in the same year, experienced many of the same cultural and social events that shaped their work. In much the same way that Gershwin could depict the sensual nuances of human experience through his music, Sybil Andrews created carefully designed artwork that offered a new way to look at everyday life.
For over 60 years, Andrews created a consistent body of linocuts, developing her distinctive style in the 1930s at a time when the effects of Cubism and Futurism were influential in British art. By choosing subjects from the everyday world around her, she brought a new vision to subjects that might be otherwise overlooked or considered commonplace.
“Isn't it a little like magic that we can get our thoughts and emotions down on paper and canvas and paint,” Andrews said. “The viewer can treasure the very essence of our thought, and experience it for himself.”
With a collection of over 1,500 objects including all of her famous colour linocuts and the original linoleum blocks, paintings in oil and watercolour, drawings, drypoint etchings, sketchbooks, and personal papers, Glenbow Museum is a major study centre for Andrews’ life and work. Glenbow is pleased to showcase her work to the community outside of our galleries and to join with the CPO to introduce Gershwin lovers to the influential style of Sybil Andrews.
Some of Sybil Andrews’ artwork can be viewed on Glenbow Museum’s 2nd floor, just outside of the Modernist Gallery, or visit our online exhibition, Impress.
The Calgary Philharmonic Orchestra’s new CD, Rhapsody in Blue: The Best of George Gershwin can be purchased in the Glenbow Museum Shop.