To celebrate its 100 years, the Winnipeg Art Gallery's 100 Masters: Only in Canada exhibit opens on May 11. With loaned pieces headed to Winnipeg from 30 galleries across the country, there's a lot of art hanging in the WAG that's never been on display here before.
SCENE asked curatorial assistant Ali King to give us a peek into the big shipping crates and tell us about some of the pieces in the exhibit:
Giovanni Paolo Panini was the leading view painter in Rome in the 18th century, known for his masterfully choreographed scenes of ancient and modern Roman buildings and spaces.
Giovanni Paolo Panini, A Capriccio of Roman Ruins
with the Arch of Constantine, c. 1755. Oil on canvas. Art Gallery of
Ontario, Toronto (WAG)
Panini often created a composite of structures, and, as with many of these arrangements, the role of capriccio (a mixture of real and imaginary features) cannot be overlooked.
For artists and patrons alike, these impressive structures, like those presented here, evoked the mystery of ancient worlds, the glories of mythology and biblical narratives, and archaeological discoveries.
In this work Panini has positioned the famous arch in the centre of the composition where it appears dwarfed by the classically designed aqueduct that extends across the entire painting.
To the left of the Arch of Constantine are two of the oldest extant buildings in Rome from the second century BCE: the circular Temple of Vesta and the Temple of Fortuna Virilis, which sit next to each other in the Piazza Bocca della Verità, the ancient Forum Boarium by the Tiber River. 100 Masters: Only in Canada opens at the Winnipeg Art Gallery on May 11.
Related: WAG's Stephen Borys talks about putting 100 Masters together