Past Exhibitions 2008-2009

In addition to our permanent art and artifact displays, Glenbow maintains an active exhibition program throughout the year. Exhibitions are often drawn from our collections. We also host travelling exhibitions from museums and art galleries around the world.


Through the Looking Glass and The Paradise Institute

Through The Looking Glass

September 26 – November 16

This exhibition takes a close look at the altered world of dream spaces and reversals. Glenbow Museum's former President and CEO Jeff Spalding curated this exciting exhibit, drawing connections to the playful, poetic themes of the Lewis Caroll classic of the same name. Don’t miss this chance to explore a world of new and shifting possibilities.

The Paradise Institute
by Janet Cardiff and George Bures Miller

Glenbow is proud to present world-renowned Alberta The Paradise Institute
sound artist Janet Cardiff and her artwork The Paradise Institute.

The Paradise Institute creates a new artistic format located between two disciplines, a hybrid genre borrowing from installation, video projection, audio, sculpture and performance; where artists effectively

function as movie directors, screenwriters, composers and radio play producers.

Read More

Run Glenbow Museum - The Movement Movement

Sunday, October 12, 12:30p

Join Toronto artists Jessica Rose and Jenn Goodwin when they bring their own brand of performances art to Glenbow. Pioneers of gallery running, watch (or join) these artists as they run through our galleries, transforming the museum visitor experience from spectator to participant. Part of M:ST, a city-wide performance art festival.

For more information, or to register online beginning September 29, visit


Reweaving a Life

February 22 - September 28, 2008

Casa con techo de paja en Tlamazcazapa [Thatched house in Tlamacazapa], 2006, Karen Kulyk, gouache and watercolour on paper.

The "Reweaving a Life" art project portrays the daily reality of the Nahua women of Tlamacazapa, Mexico, who live in acute poverty and who are caught in a complex web of social disintegration, coupled with environmental toxicity and water shortage. Life revolves around basket-making, a traditional art, which provides their basic income.

A group of nine Nahua women opened their hearts and their homes to artists who produced a series of paintings, each portraying aspects of their lives and the coming social changes. The process of interacting with the artists and engaging in reflective processes about their lives, their work and their hopes is the beginning of a unique journey for these women.

A combination of traditional basketry and contemporary art about the basket makers, "Reweaving A Life" enables a strong and courageous group of Indigenous women to place increased value on their work and on themselves as individuals.

Sponsored by Riddell Kurczaba

Image: Casa con techo de paja en Tlamazcazapa [Thatched house in Tlamacazapa], 2006, Karen Kulyk, gouache and watercolour on paper.


The Big Gift

June 6 - September 27, 2008

A Collaborative, 3-Venue exhibition opening at the Glenbow Museum, the Alberta College of Art and Design's Illingworth Kerr Gallery and the University of Calgary's Nickle Arts Museum.

Nickle Arts Museum, University of Calgary
June 6 - Sept 27, 2008 (East Gallery)

June 20 - July 25, 2008 (Main Gallery)
Public Opening: July 1, 1:00 p.m. to 4:00 p.m.

Illingworth Kerr Gallery, Alberta College of Art + Design
July 3 - August 30, 2008
Public Opening: July 3, 5:00 p.m. to 7:00 p.m.

Glenbow Museum
July 25 – September 14, 2008
Public Opening: July 26 All Day, free admission until noon.

Since Jeff Spalding's arrival at Glenbow, works of art from across Canada have been pouring into the museum. In a spontaneous show of affection for our new CEO and President, artists, art collectors, dealers and supporters from coast to coast have generously donated over 600 works worth over $1.2 million. From video installation to paintings to photographs to sculptures - the range is absolutely stunning!

Glenbow is thrilled to share these spectacular gifts with audiences across the city. Come explore this treasure trove of art in an unprecedented three-venue exhibition at Glenbow, the Alberta College of Art and Design's Illingworth Kerr Gallery and the University of Calgary's Nickle Art Museum.


SI08: Art+Design

June 25 - August 17, 2008

Sled Island Music Festival is a four-day, multi-venue festival which showcases a wide variety of emerging and established musical talent.  This year, Sled Island is adding a visual arts component to the roster.  SI: Visual Arts is a chance to see the diverse work of young artists and cultural producers. SI08: Art + Design will occupy a number of downtown spaces, and is an opportunity to question a range of popular visual experiences, and examine how a new generation reads and bridges new art with ideas of the past.

SI08: Art + Design at Glenbow organized by Mary-Beth Laviolette, Glenbow Museum Senior Art Curator and curated by Wayne Baerwaldt, Director/Curator, Illingworth Kerr Gallery, Alberta College of Art + Design

Check out the following installations/performances at Glenbow!

Thick and Thin
July 25 – September 28
4th floor gallery, Glenbow

Miriam Bankey (Calgary, Ab)

Kyle Beal (Montreal, Qc)

Dave And Jenn (Calgary, Ab)

Patrick Lundeen (Brooklyn, Ny)

Chris Millar (Calgary, Ab)

Kim Neudorf (Calgary, Ab)

Ryan Slugget (Austin, Tx)

Artistic innovation is at the core of this exhibition, bringing to light the work of artists whose aesthetic and material concerns have been formed by a Calgary milieu over the past ten years. Can we deduce the influences of a Calgary painting community from artists such as John Will to Chris Cran? Are there disparate influences that do not have precedents in this milieu? Is there a hybrid aesthetic in development? These and other questions will be examined in the exhibition.

Curated by Wil Murray.

Cloaca #5
Wim Delvoye
June 25 - August 17
2nd floor Glenbow, Gallery 7

Wim Delvoye's work challenges traditional conventions of taste. In a series of groundbreaking kinetic installations Ghent-based Delvoye has been developing since the mid-1990s, the artist has created machine-sculptures which duplicate the human digestive system without calling on ‘human characteristics'. The various components of the digestive system are replicated, creating an intestinal microclimate of bacterial flora. The work requires constant care, much like a human body, and produces a surprise every day!

Wildflowers of Manitoba

Noam Gonick & Luis Jacob
June 25 - July 13
2nd floor Glenbow, Gallery 7

This installation includes still photos, moving images, sound and performance art from Lake Winnipeg's shores. The installation includes interrelated short film projections in which four young men act out an improbable survivalist lifestyle during the summer of 2006. The script establishes a "nature" film set and a nostalgic vision of a youth-cult. The sets and subjects evoke a distant, more innocent era for alternative, collective lifestyles circa 1967. The work includes film projections, a sound track by the Quebeçois band Harmonium, forest camp gear and live models set in a 12-foot high geodesic dome.

WARNING: Please be advised this exhibition contains nudity and sexuality.

Peach Pit, Fanbase

June 25 - August 17
3rd floor Glenbow, next to Mavericks

Merrill Beth Nisker, better known as Peaches, is an electroclash artist based in Berlin, Germany. She plays almost all the instruments for her songs, programs her own electric beats and produces her records. Nisker's music and performance are preoccupied with gender identity meant to incite and radicalize audiences. Her lyrics and live shows self-consciously blur the distinction between male and female. The installation takes the form of a unique cave, its walls lined with things fans have thrown onstage during her concerts over the last four years. You'll also hear audio of Peaches' fans co-performing one of her best known songs.

WARNING: Please be advised this exhibition contains nudity, sexuality and coarse language.

The Landscape Generator
Tim van Wijk
Level 2 at Glenbow
July 15 – August 17

Crank the handle of Tim van Wijk’s big, ingenious machine with its disks and gears. Watch as layered arrangements of miniature landscape elements and scenic sites will emerge–but not the kind seen in postcards and conventional landscape paintings. Designed to simulate the experience of driving through British Columbia’s interior, the sculpture presents the viewer with a constantly shifting view of a layered landscape.

Don Coyote

Matt Masters, Terrance Houle and others
June 25-28; July 4-12
Glenbow ConocoPhillips Theatre at 7:30 p.m.
$7 per person
Call 403.268.4110 for tickets

Classic country singer and Calgary performance artist, Matt Masters, has co-created a multimedia Western cabaret musical called Don Coyote. Masters plays the role of Don Coyote in a 12-part stage cabaret where Masters sings country music while actors in three key character roles drive the narrative.  Calgary artist Terrance Houle's original video projections will be part of a changing and dynamic backdrop.

Don Coyote is a 21st-century resident of southern Alberta who goes crazy and becomes a cowboy troubadour, roaming rural Alberta while singing songs and righting wrongs. Don Coyote's story is not a re-telling of Don Quixote but does draw inspiration and parallels from it, using the windmills of Pincher Creek, for example, as alternate geographical markers and illusions to power while providing a great setting for a story that is largely a cyber construct from Don Coyote's computer.

Co-produced by the Illingworth Kerr Gallery at the Alberta College of Art + Design

Honouring Tradition: Reframing Native Art

February 16 - July 13, 2008

Frederick R. McDonald, Nêhithawak (Woodland Cree) (1957-) Big Bear's Dilemma, Paper Promises, 1998, acrylic on canvas. Collection of Glenbow Museum. Purchased, 1998.  998.041.001.Come and experience rich Native art in our new exhibition, Honouring Tradition:
Reframing Native Art
. Past and present meet and interact in this breathtaking display of over 200 colourful objects including shirts, moccasins, baskets, paintings, photographs and mixed media works. Honouring Tradition challenges views which define historical art pieces as separate from contemporary Aboriginal art.

Glenbow collaborated with Aboriginal artist Frederick McDonald to bring you this exhibit. With his help, beautiful artworks were selected fromGlenbow's powerful collection. The selected pieces honour the importance of community, the connection to land and place and the tradition of storytelling.

Jane Ash Poitras, Gerald Tailfeathers, Judy Chartrand, Allen Sapp, Bob Boyer,
Joane Cardinal-Schubert, Robert Houle, Alex Janvier and Roger Crait are just a few of the artists featured in this exhibition.


Exhibition Companion Book

Honouring Tradition book coverThe exhibition will be accompanied by a full colour, 150 page book featuring 75 images and commentary from exhibit contributors.

The breadth of Aboriginal art in this publication, lavishly documented in more than 65 full-colour photographs, honours the importance of community, the connection to land and place and the tradition of storytelling.

This Glenbow produced publication is available for purchase in the Glenbow shop during the run of the exhibition.
Visit the Glenbow Museum Shop.


Four Curators, One Blog

Honouring Tradition Curators BlogOur goal is to consider both the traditional art forms alongside contemporary paintings and multimedia work. As a curatorial team, we are many voices: Gerry Conaty (Director of Curators), Beth Carter (Ethnology Curator), Quyen Hoang (Art Curator) and Frederick McDonald. Through this blog, we will share our thoughts and ideas as we move forward with the exhibit development.

We invite you to contribute your comments. Visit us at

Temples of India: Photographs by Niru Bhatia

Temples of India: Photographs by Niru Bhatia

May 2008 - July 2008

Photographer Niru Bhatia has travelled off the beaten track to record the glorious temples, sculptures and art of the many regions of India. Many of these locations have now been declared UNESCO World Heritage sites.  From 5th century ruins to elaborate modern centres of worship, this photography exhibit showcases the vibrancy and continuity of Indian cultures.

Dream: A Tale of Wonder, Wisdom & Wishes

August 18, 2007 to July 6, 2008

Dream A Tale of Wonder, Wisdom and Wishes by Susan V. Bosak.Watch as Glenbow's 4th floor art gallery transforms into Dream: A Tale of Wonder, Wisdom & Wishes. This exhibit features amazing original artwork created by 15 top children's illustrators from five countries, including Governor General's Award winner Barbara Reid and two-time Caldecott Medal winners Leo and Diane Dillon. Come see everything from watercolour and collage to digital and plasticine pieces.

The exhibit is based on the award-winning bestselling book Dream by Susan V. Bosak which tells a multilayered, poetic story about hopes and dreams across a lifetime. It has won a remarkable 11 national awards. Says The Bloomsbury Review, "Richly crafted and thoughtfully written, 'Dream' is a dazzling project that challenges us to find a dream and follow it."

You're never too young or too old to dream! Explore the power of dreams and the power of art to inspire us to achieve those dreams.


Tracing History: Presenting the Unpresentable

February 16 - June 22, 2008

Tracing History: Presenting the Unpresentable is a complimentary exhibit featuring four contemporary Aboriginal artists. Tanya Harnett, Faye HeavyShield, Terrance Houle and Adrian Stimson have all explored Glenbow's collections and respond with their own new work in this thought-provoking exhibit.

Their art speaks to a sense of history that shifts between truth and fact, past and present, right and wrong. The artists make us see change as an integral part of history, identity and tradition.


Mark Brecke, A tense Sudanese Liberation Army rebel stands guard. 2004Mark Brecke, A tense Sudanese Liberation Army rebel stands guard. 2004


March 14 - 21, 2008

DARFUR/DARFUR is a provocative photography exhibit that was projected onto Glenbow Museum's walls facing Stephen Avenue and 1st St. S.E. from March 14 to 21, 2008. Over 170 colour and black-and-white images by seven internationally acclaimed photojournalists and one former U.S. Marine brought into focus the landscape
the culture and the people that are currently under attack in the Darfur region in western Sudan.

The photographs, dating from 2003 to the present, were taken in Darfur by former U.S. Marine Brian Steidle and photojournalists Lynsey Addario, Mark Brecke, Helen
Caux, Ron Haviv, Paolo Pellegrin, Ryan Spencer Reed, and Michal Safdie. The exhibit was premiered in 2006 and has been displayed at museums across North America, Europe and Africa, including The Holocaust Memorial Museum in Washington, D.C., the Jewish Museum in Berlin, the Montreal Museum of Fine Arts and the Royal Ontario Museum in Toronto.

For the Love of Rubens

For the Love of Rubens, hearts for Valentines February 14 - 17, 2008

It was love at first sight on February 14th
when Glenbow Museum unveiled a Studio
of Rubens painting titledThe Fruit Dance (c.1616-1617).
On long term loan to Glenbow from a generous Canadian collector, the painting is a feast for the eyes!

Our unveiling celebration included a presentation by internationally recognized scholar of Renaissance and Baroque art, Paola Pacifici.

Emily Carr, Big Raven, 1931, oil on canvas, Collection of the Vancouver Art Gallery, Emily Carr Trust, Photo: Trevor Mills, Vancouver Art Gallery

Emily Carr, Big Raven, 1931, oil on canvas, Collection of the Vancouver Art Gallery, Emily Carr Trust, Photo: Trevor Mills, Vancouver Art Gallery

Emily Carr: New Perspectives on a Canadian Icon

October 27, 2007 - January 27, 2008

Presented by:

Glenbow was proud to be the only prairie venue to host this national touring exhibition organized by the Vancouver Art Gallery and the National Gallery of Canada.

This unique show explored Carr's art and her life, something not done in earlier retrospectives. A remarkable Canadian woman and a trailblazer, no other artist in Canadian history has sparked as much popular and scholarly response as Emily Carr. The exhibit featured nearly 200 objects by Carr and other, including paintings, drawings, watercolours, caricatures, ceramics, sculpture, hooked rugs, books, maps and photographs.

Organized and circulated by the Vancouver Art Gallery and the National Gallery of Canada.

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