Works on Paper
Works on Paper
The Winnipeg Art Gallery’s works on paper collection is comprised of approximately 6,000 objects, encompassing historical and contemporary production, along with works created by both Canadian and internationally recognized artists.
The Winnipeg Art Gallery’s works on paper collection is comprised of approximately 6,000 objects, encompassing historical and contemporary production, along with works created by both Canadian and internationally recognized artists. Given the unique and diverse opportunities paper can afford, the collection ranges in medium from collage to watercolour, from graphite drawings to prints, and from quick doodles and study sketches to fully conceived and completed works of art.
Paper has proven a popular, highly malleable, support for Manitoba artists in particular. It has been embraced differently at diverse historical moments, from the refinement of printmaking processes between the two World Wars by artists like W.J. Phillips, to the development of experimental ink graphics in the 1950s by, among others, Bruce Head, to the recent reinvigoration of drawing and collage by a generation of younger Winnipeg artists, such as Marcel Dzama.
There are several notable collections by a number of key artists in the WAG’s works on paper holdings. These include preparatory sketches by members of the Group of Seven, along with sketchbooks by Lionel Lemoine FitzGerald and Christiane Pflug, among others. Canadian artists represent sizeable and significant collections of drawings at the WAG; notables include FitzGerald, Alexander Musgrove, Bertram Brooker, Fritz Brandtner, Richard Gorman, and Eli Langer. In 1986 the WAG acquired over 200 surrealist pieces by Winnipeg-born artist Dalla Husband created when she was working in Paris in the 1930s. Of equal distinction are approximately 60 drawings that follow the separate trajectories of the impressive careers of nationally-renowned Manitobans Ivan Eyre and Esther Warkov to the present. Collage is also represented in the collection by a diverse range of artists, from Jack Shadbolt to Robert Houle, and includes a growing contingent of pieces by contemporary Winnipeg artists such as Paul Butler and Bonnie Marin.
The Gallery also holds extensive print collections, encompassing output by international historical artists such as Albrecht Dürer, Rembrandt, William Blake, J.M.W. Turner, Honoré Daumier, William Holman Hunt, and moderns like Picasso, Joseph Albers, Kenneth Noland, Jean Dubuffet, Francis Bacon, Robert Rauschenberg, Andy Warhol, and David Hockney. Canadian printmaking is represented through compilations of work by artists such as David Milne, W.J. Phillips, Henry Eric Bergman, Jean-Paul Riopelle, Yves Gaucher, Alex Colville, Ivan Eyre, and Suzy Lake. Of particular note is the WAG’s collection of over 30 serigraphs by a pioneer of prairie abstraction, Tony Tascona.
Building upon this important archive, the WAG continues to collect works on paper in all its various manifestations to further strengthen the rich resource for study this area of the collection provides.