New 80s Throwback Show Opens at WAG

Winnipeg, Manitoba, September 27, 2018: A new exhibit about the 1980s is opening at the Winnipeg Art Gallery (WAG). The 80s Image features 45 paintings and photo-based works by artists who helped define the decade: Peter Doig, Wanda Koop, Ken Lum, General Idea, and many more. The show runs from September 29 until spring 2019.

In the years that launched the music video and the 24-hour live news cycle, the 80s saw video, television, cinema, satellite and computer imagery, and billboard advertising dominate the arts scene. The 80s Image explores the curious resiliency of painting and still-photography throughout the decade, and how artists responded to the quickly changing media landscape, as well as the political and economic climate.

The 80s Image kicks off as part of Culture Days Manitoba and Nuit Blanche Winnipeg celebrations at the WAG on September 29. All galleries will be free from 11am to 5pm for national Culture Days. The Gallery will re-open from 6pm to 4am for Nuit Blanche Winnipeg, a free, all-night celebration of contemporary art. See event details here.

Quick Facts:
• 45 paintings and still-photographs, and video-based work from the WAG’s vast collection and loans. 
• Features rarely shown pieces such as General Idea’s AIDS, displayed only once before at the WAG in 1992.
• Explores artistic activism, protesting sexism and colonialism, and responding to social crisis.
• Artists represent Canada and the wider international community, with about a dozen Manitoba artists.
• Download the FREE Winnipeg Art Gallery app and enjoy an 80s playlist curated by CKUW 95.9, exhibit map, and more.
• Admission: Adult $12; Student (with valid student card)/Senior (60+ years of age) $10; Child (5 years and under) FREE; Family (up to two adults and four children under 18) $28; WAG member FREE.
• The WAG is Canada’s oldest civic art gallery and is home to over 27,000 artworks spanning centuries, media, and cultures, including the largest public collection of contemporary Inuit art on earth.

Drawn largely from the Winnipeg Art Gallery collection, with a handful of magnificent loans, the WAG is excited to bring back the 80s this fall. Thirty years later, many of the important issues that defined the 1980s continue to resonate today.
-Dr. Stephen Borys, Director & CEO, Winnipeg Art Gallery

People who lived through the 1980s and even those who are younger continue to be fascinated by the decade with synth pop back in style, high-waisted jeans, and shows like Stranger Things. In The 80s Image, visitors will see there are many similarities with our current cultural climate. The show isn't simply a nostalgic retreat.
-Andrew Kear, Chief Curator and exhibition curator, Winnipeg Art Gallery

September 29 • Celebration of Culture Days Manitoba opens all galleries for free from 11am to 5pm with art-making activities and performances. The Gallery will re-open from 6pm to 4am for Nuit Blanche Winnipeg, a free, all-night celebration of contemporary art.
September 29, 30; October 6, 7, 13, 14, 20, 2pm • Guided drop-in tour of The 80s Image. Free with Gallery admission.
• 80s Film Nights • 7-9pm • $10 • Cash bar and snacks, 13+ event
        o October 5: The Breakfast Club
        o October 19: Sixteen Candles
        o November 9: Ferris Bueller’s Day Off
October 10, 12pm • Art for Lunch Tour: The 80s Image with Chief Curator Andrew Kear. Free with Gallery admission.
October 26, 7pm • Friday Night Curator Tour: The 80s Image with Chief Curator Andrew Kear, FREE with Gallery admission, cash bar.
November 1, 7pm • Artist Talk with Ken Lum: The 80s Image artist on his varied media and issues of identity. Presented by the University of Manitoba School of Art and Plug In Institute of Contemporary. Free admission.
• Visit for more related programming.

Artists include: Roy Arden, Barbara Astman, Eleanor Bond, Bob Boyer, David Buchan, Brian Burnett, Sheila Butler, Lynne Cohen, Sorel Cohen, Carole Conde/Karl Beveridge, Douglas Curran, Peter Doig, Stan Douglans, William Eakin, Evergon, Cliff Eyland, FASTWÜRMS, Rosalie Favell, Suzanne Funnell, Suzanne Gauthier, General Idea, Larry Glawson, Jack Goldstein, Will Gorlitz, Janice Gurney, Robert Houle, Natalka Husar, Nomi Kaplan, Wanda Koop, Stephen Livick, Ken Lum, David McMillan, John Paskievich, Alison Rossiter, Tony Scherman, Jeffrey M. Thomas, Marsha Whiddon, John Will, and Tim Zuck.

The Winnipeg Art Gallery would like to thank and acknowledge the generous support of CKUM 95.9FM.

Associated Links:
Winnipeg Art Gallery

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For more information or to arrange interviews, please contact:
Catherine Maksymiuk
Manager, Media & Marketing
Winnipeg Art Gallery

Tammy Sawatzky
Public Relations Coordinator
Winnipeg Art Gallery

About the Winnipeg Art Gallery
The Winnipeg Art Gallery is a cultural advocate using art to connect, inspire, and inform. Playing a dynamic role in the community, we are a place for learning, dialogue, and enjoyment through art. The WAG holds in trust the largest public collection of contemporary Inuit art on earth. To celebrate the art and to honour the Inuit, the WAG is building the Inuit Art Centre, the first of its kind in the world. Set to open in 2020, the Centre will bridge Canada’s North and South through exhibitions, research, education, and art making. To learn more visit



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