Frank Gehry - Art Gallery of Ontario, Toronto

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Frank Gehry - Art Gallery of Ontario, Toronto

Postby artfanz » Sun Sep 07, 2008 8:08 pm

Apparently the "new" ago opens on November 14th, with the unveiling of the Gehry alterations. For those in Toronto the AGO offers free admission for three days starting on the 14th for the unveiling.
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Re: Gehry's AGO

Postby Paul Clerkin » Mon Nov 10, 2008 7:26 pm

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Re: Gehry's AGO

Postby Paul Clerkin » Thu Nov 13, 2008 4:22 pm

A new look, a new bond with residents
The Globe and Mail

Emerging from the debris of decades of squabbles and hundreds of pages of legal documents, Toronto's Art Gallery of Ontario unveils its revamped and redesigned home this week in a state of happy detente with neighbourhood residents who once voiced fierce opposition to its transformational plans. The tensions and spats between homeowners of the Grange area date back to expansion projects completed in 1974, 1977 and 1993, which were opposed and altered by a small but tenacious group determined to protect the area's residential quality from the seemingly ever-expanding structure in their midst. But as they contemplated weeks of costly legal hearings at the Ontario Municipal Board over the most recent construction, the two sides chose then CITY-TV reporter (now city councillor) Adam Vaughan, a neighbourhood resident, as a go-between for meetings. The result was a settlement that allowed for the construction of the AGO as it now exists and the blooming of a co-operative spirit that had been lacking for decades. Many residents were less than thrilled with the first two stages of the 1970s expansion by Canadian architect John C. Parkin, completed in 1974 and 1977. In 1987, the gallery began discussing “the next stage of the construction,” putting the residents' backs up again, according to Ceta Ramkhalawansingh, one of the residents who has led the charge for years.

http://www.theglobeandmail.com/servlet/story/RTGAM.20081112.wresidents12/BNStory/Entertainment/home

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Revamped AGO a modest masterpiece
Toronto Star

he Art Gallery of Ontario may not be one of Frank Gehry's biggest projects, but it is one of his best. The scope of the scheme, a $276-million remake of the venerable institution, simply didn't give the architect the financial and physical wherewithal needed to produce the sort of monument that captures the world's attention and changes cities. But what the world doesn't know won't go unnoticed – or unappreciated – here in Toronto. To put it simply, Gehry's revamped AGO is a masterpiece, but just as important, it is the easiest, most effortless and relaxed architectural masterpiece this city has seen. Just as great virtuosi make playing a musical instrument look like something a kid could do, great architects have a way of making their works appear inevitable. There is simply no other way the gallery could have ended up; this is it. Or so we believe. Nothing about the new AGO smacks of being arbitrary, eccentric or driven by vanity, the desire to shock, or, for that matter, please. This is a building that takes its every cue from the program; it is a place to view art.

http://www.thestar.com/article/535107

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Gallery joins a global wave of renos
Toronto Star

It should come as no surprise to find CEOs and trustees of many of the world's leading art galleries and museums on hand for tomorrow's public reopening of the Art Gallery of Ontario. A new museum opening is the 21st century's version of a royal wedding. Besides, these visitors have either gone through much of the same thing or are likely do so – depending on their individual economies worldwide – in the near future. In today's international art market, major galleries indulge in matching aspirations while needing to find similar solutions for similar problems. Take the Los Angeles County Museum of Art. Earlier this year, LACMA opened its own major addition, the stand-alone Broad Museum of Contemporary Art designed by the Italian architect Renzo Piano. Much like the late Ken Thomson, the AGO's chief benefactor, Eli Broad had sufficient clout and cash to pave LACMA's road to renewal, but even he caused some bumps along the way. LACMA used Broad's contentious "gift" – the multi-billionaire real-estate tycoon let it slip a month before his museum opening that he was only loaning his collection, not donating it – to refocus its role as a museum. "We realized we had an opportunity before us to show everyone we're a different museum," said LACMA president Melody Kanschat. "People should be entering our collection from our perspective and that's from a West Coast perspective."

http://www.thestar.com/article/535017

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Frank Gehry talks about his AGO redesign
Toronto Star

For Frank Gehry – the man who reinvented the Art Gallery of Ontario – what matters most about this week's grand reopening is feeling the late Ken Thomson would have approved. "It sounds terribly romantic," the 79-year-old architect said yesterday in an exclusive phone interview with the Star, "but I had a strong feeling as David (Ken's son) and I were working on installing his collection, we could feel Ken's presence." It is a deep regret for Gehry that Thomson, who died in 2006, will not be there for the opening. And now, owing to a family medical emergency, Gehry worried he might have to cancel plans to fly here today by private plane for tonight's black-tie thank you dinner in the AGO's Baillie Court and tomorrow's media conference. How the AGO project developed, Gehry revealed, is different from what he was orginally asked to do: design a new building near the south end of Grange Park to house the Thomson collection. If Gehry does make it to the opening, he will surely receive a hero's welcome. And what he is most proud of is how the art looks. "There are these fashion trends widely emulated in the gallery world," Gehry says. "If you love art, you have to pay attention to how you show it. Putting things on a pedestal hurts the art and I didn't want to do that. It's a miracle, but the galleries for Ken's Canadian collection are the best I've ever done. Even with white cubic spaces we managed to give them soul."

http://www.thestar.com/entertainment/article/535213
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Re: Frank Gehry - Art Gallery of Ontario, Toronto

Postby Paul Clerkin » Fri Nov 14, 2008 4:58 pm

A virtual tour of the new AGO
Toronto Star

We don't just go to an art gallery and leave it at that. We expect something back. I wasn't sure what that was for me prior to visiting Frank Gehry's reconfigured Art Gallery of Ontario, despite weeks of brain-busting media coverage. Once inside though I came across a panel of desolate-looking ink drawings by Seth, the Canadian cartoonist, one ending with text caption reading: "In these places and others like them, time is standing still." Time. That was it. I wanted that sense of stopping time as I looked at a picture. I needed a place to disappear into for part of a day. After all, isn't this precisely the sort of basic experience Matthew Teitelbaum has promised from his gallery, now with almost 50 per cent more space for art? Is it not to "take us back to the very basic question," as the AGO director put it, "what is art?" To that end, I have compiled an hour-by-hour diary of my first two AGO visits earlier this week and yesterday.

http://www.thestar.com/entertainment/article/536567

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The Art Gallery of Ontario has extra money. Our suggestion: Build an AGO Modern
National Post

The Art Gallery of Ontario is expected to officially release today, Friday, a bit of news that it surprised journalists with at a media preview the day before. The gallery has — quietly, in the midst of its nearly completed renovations — raised $24-million beyond its stated goal of $276-million, which itself was a bump from $254-million. So, unless the AGO needed $300-million all along and wasn't telling, it now has money to spare. What if the gallery were to resist the temptation to literally spend it all in one place? As terrific as the renovated building is, Toronto could also really use a big, new contemporary art museum. Considering the fundraising muscle the AGO wields, it should either build the thing or get the ball rolling. Yes, so far, Frank Gehry's AGO appears to be as beautiful and well-thought-out as you've been hearing (ask us again in a year or so when we've had a chance to kick the vertical grain Douglas fir tires a little more). OK, ta-daa! It's done. Why keep pouring money into it?

http://network.nationalpost.com/np/blogs/theampersand/archive/2008/11/14/memo-to-the-ago-don-t-spend-it-all-in-one-place.aspx

----

Finished AGO puts Gehry's fears to rest
The Globe and Mail

Neighbourhood kid turned star international architect Frank Gehry had his creative spirit on full display yesterday as he spoke about transforming his native landscape on the eve of today's ribbon cutting at the revamped Art Gallery of Ontario. Mr. Gehry revealed a restless desire to tweak and refine his ever-shifting vision of the gallery, against the backdrop of a wooden staircase that wriggles above the AGO's Walker Court and boasts as many twists and turns as the architect's project. "I think it's a real Frank Gehry building. I mean, remodelling is tough. It's hard to pull parts and pieces together, and there's stuff I'd like to do still," he said. Mr. Gehry held court alongside gallery director and CEO Matthew Teitelbaum and president Charles Baillie, who announced the completion of the AGO's $276-million fundraising campaign. "If we had a little bit more money, I'd go back and do a few things," Mr. Gehry said and, turning to Mr. Teitelbaum, added gently, "which we can talk about some day." His urge to drive change has transformed both the building and the early designs that he had to unveil before he was ready - to meet procedural deadlines. But Mr. Gehry's discomfort over the preliminary mock-ups, which represented the idea for the project in its infancy, gave way yesterday to pride in the finished product.

http://www.theglobeandmail.com/servlet/story/LAC.20081114.AGO14/TPStory/National

----

Restrained masterpiece
The Globe and Mail

If any doubt remains that the Toronto-born Frank Gehry is one of the world's great architects, his overhaul of the Art Gallery of Ontario, which opens today, should erase it. Mr. Gehry's AGO is a restrained masterpiece, and a reminder of the power of architecture to reinvent ideas, institutions and cities. The proof of Mr. Gehry's genius lies in his deft adaptation to unusual circumstances. By his standards, it was to be done on the cheap, for a mere $276-million. The museum's administrators and neighbours were adamant that the architect, who is used to being handed whole city blocks for over-the-top titanium confections, produce a lower-key design, sensitive to its context and the gallery's long history. Working mostly in glass and Douglas fir, Mr. Gehry has given us a thrilling series of spaces, from a 200-metre-long glassed-in sculpture gallery, suspended over a public street, to an elegant new centre for contemporary art high above a park at the rear of the AGO. The revamped museum is a fitting home for an excellent and growing collection, which now includes some 2,000 pieces donated by the late Kenneth Thomson. The city of Toronto is nearing the end of an unprecedented round of cultural construction. Some of its results - Daniel Libeskind's renovation of the Royal Ontario Museum and Jack Diamond's Four Seasons Centre for the Performing Arts - opened to mixed reviews. A few, including a new film centre and a blockbuster museum of Islamic art bankrolled by the Aga Khan, are still to come. None is likely to engage Toronto as meaningfully as Mr. Gehry, who grew up a few blocks from the AGO before leaving to make his career in Los Angeles. His creation embraces the city, exposing gallery-goers to new views of the jumbled, multi-layered aesthetic that defines so much of it. But its beauty also challenges Toronto, a place that has never been concerned enough with looks, to do better.

http://www.theglobeandmail.com/servlet/story/LAC.20081114.EAGO22/TPStory/Comment

----

We see ourselves in AGO - and we like it
Toronto Star

In Toronto right now, all roads lead to the AGO. Which is as it should be: As remade by Frank Gehry, the new Art Gallery of Ontario is the kind of project this city dreams about having. Not only is the building casually though profoundly brilliant, it will be a magnificent home for art. It also engages happily with the surroundings, more connected to the city than its previous incarnations. But given Toronto's deep-seated feelings of inadequacy, the AGO must also serve another purpose, namely that of bolstering the sometimes fragile civic ego. We believe we are ignored, that the rest of the world has failed to recognize what we have accomplished here. In fact, the rest of the world holds Toronto and Canada in surprisingly high regard, higher than it deserves. Go anywhere – Europe, America or Asia – mention this city, this country, and the response is unabashed enthusiasm. Until Barack Obama was elected president of the U.S. last week, Americans travelled the globe pretending to be Canadians. No, it's not that the world doesn't love us, it's that we don't love ourselves. Given the overweening sense of entitlement we see, say, in the States, perhaps one shouldn't be too quick to complain about this.

http://www.thestar.com/GTA/Columnist/article/536657
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Posts: 5427
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Re: Frank Gehry - Art Gallery of Ontario, Toronto

Postby Paul Clerkin » Fri Nov 14, 2008 4:58 pm

A virtual tour of the new AGO
Toronto Star

We don't just go to an art gallery and leave it at that. We expect something back. I wasn't sure what that was for me prior to visiting Frank Gehry's reconfigured Art Gallery of Ontario, despite weeks of brain-busting media coverage. Once inside though I came across a panel of desolate-looking ink drawings by Seth, the Canadian cartoonist, one ending with text caption reading: "In these places and others like them, time is standing still." Time. That was it. I wanted that sense of stopping time as I looked at a picture. I needed a place to disappear into for part of a day. After all, isn't this precisely the sort of basic experience Matthew Teitelbaum has promised from his gallery, now with almost 50 per cent more space for art? Is it not to "take us back to the very basic question," as the AGO director put it, "what is art?" To that end, I have compiled an hour-by-hour diary of my first two AGO visits earlier this week and yesterday.

http://www.thestar.com/entertainment/article/536567

----

The Art Gallery of Ontario has extra money. Our suggestion: Build an AGO Modern
National Post

The Art Gallery of Ontario is expected to officially release today, Friday, a bit of news that it surprised journalists with at a media preview the day before. The gallery has — quietly, in the midst of its nearly completed renovations — raised $24-million beyond its stated goal of $276-million, which itself was a bump from $254-million. So, unless the AGO needed $300-million all along and wasn't telling, it now has money to spare. What if the gallery were to resist the temptation to literally spend it all in one place? As terrific as the renovated building is, Toronto could also really use a big, new contemporary art museum. Considering the fundraising muscle the AGO wields, it should either build the thing or get the ball rolling. Yes, so far, Frank Gehry's AGO appears to be as beautiful and well-thought-out as you've been hearing (ask us again in a year or so when we've had a chance to kick the vertical grain Douglas fir tires a little more). OK, ta-daa! It's done. Why keep pouring money into it?

http://network.nationalpost.com/np/blogs/theampersand/archive/2008/11/14/memo-to-the-ago-don-t-spend-it-all-in-one-place.aspx

----

Finished AGO puts Gehry's fears to rest
The Globe and Mail

Neighbourhood kid turned star international architect Frank Gehry had his creative spirit on full display yesterday as he spoke about transforming his native landscape on the eve of today's ribbon cutting at the revamped Art Gallery of Ontario. Mr. Gehry revealed a restless desire to tweak and refine his ever-shifting vision of the gallery, against the backdrop of a wooden staircase that wriggles above the AGO's Walker Court and boasts as many twists and turns as the architect's project. "I think it's a real Frank Gehry building. I mean, remodelling is tough. It's hard to pull parts and pieces together, and there's stuff I'd like to do still," he said. Mr. Gehry held court alongside gallery director and CEO Matthew Teitelbaum and president Charles Baillie, who announced the completion of the AGO's $276-million fundraising campaign. "If we had a little bit more money, I'd go back and do a few things," Mr. Gehry said and, turning to Mr. Teitelbaum, added gently, "which we can talk about some day." His urge to drive change has transformed both the building and the early designs that he had to unveil before he was ready - to meet procedural deadlines. But Mr. Gehry's discomfort over the preliminary mock-ups, which represented the idea for the project in its infancy, gave way yesterday to pride in the finished product.

http://www.theglobeandmail.com/servlet/story/LAC.20081114.AGO14/TPStory/National

----

Restrained masterpiece
The Globe and Mail

If any doubt remains that the Toronto-born Frank Gehry is one of the world's great architects, his overhaul of the Art Gallery of Ontario, which opens today, should erase it. Mr. Gehry's AGO is a restrained masterpiece, and a reminder of the power of architecture to reinvent ideas, institutions and cities. The proof of Mr. Gehry's genius lies in his deft adaptation to unusual circumstances. By his standards, it was to be done on the cheap, for a mere $276-million. The museum's administrators and neighbours were adamant that the architect, who is used to being handed whole city blocks for over-the-top titanium confections, produce a lower-key design, sensitive to its context and the gallery's long history. Working mostly in glass and Douglas fir, Mr. Gehry has given us a thrilling series of spaces, from a 200-metre-long glassed-in sculpture gallery, suspended over a public street, to an elegant new centre for contemporary art high above a park at the rear of the AGO. The revamped museum is a fitting home for an excellent and growing collection, which now includes some 2,000 pieces donated by the late Kenneth Thomson. The city of Toronto is nearing the end of an unprecedented round of cultural construction. Some of its results - Daniel Libeskind's renovation of the Royal Ontario Museum and Jack Diamond's Four Seasons Centre for the Performing Arts - opened to mixed reviews. A few, including a new film centre and a blockbuster museum of Islamic art bankrolled by the Aga Khan, are still to come. None is likely to engage Toronto as meaningfully as Mr. Gehry, who grew up a few blocks from the AGO before leaving to make his career in Los Angeles. His creation embraces the city, exposing gallery-goers to new views of the jumbled, multi-layered aesthetic that defines so much of it. But its beauty also challenges Toronto, a place that has never been concerned enough with looks, to do better.

http://www.theglobeandmail.com/servlet/story/LAC.20081114.EAGO22/TPStory/Comment

----

We see ourselves in AGO - and we like it
Toronto Star

In Toronto right now, all roads lead to the AGO. Which is as it should be: As remade by Frank Gehry, the new Art Gallery of Ontario is the kind of project this city dreams about having. Not only is the building casually though profoundly brilliant, it will be a magnificent home for art. It also engages happily with the surroundings, more connected to the city than its previous incarnations. But given Toronto's deep-seated feelings of inadequacy, the AGO must also serve another purpose, namely that of bolstering the sometimes fragile civic ego. We believe we are ignored, that the rest of the world has failed to recognize what we have accomplished here. In fact, the rest of the world holds Toronto and Canada in surprisingly high regard, higher than it deserves. Go anywhere – Europe, America or Asia – mention this city, this country, and the response is unabashed enthusiasm. Until Barack Obama was elected president of the U.S. last week, Americans travelled the globe pretending to be Canadians. No, it's not that the world doesn't love us, it's that we don't love ourselves. Given the overweening sense of entitlement we see, say, in the States, perhaps one shouldn't be too quick to complain about this.

http://www.thestar.com/GTA/Columnist/article/536657
User avatar
Paul Clerkin
Old Master
 
Posts: 5427
Joined: Wed Mar 03, 1999 1:00 am
Location: Monaghan


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