Cliff Eyland Community Celebration 

WAG-Qaumajuq celebrates work of artist Cliff Eyland with exhibition reception 

Winnipeg, Manitoba, Treaty No. 1 Territory, April 26, 2022: In celebration and remembrance of a beloved member of the Winnipeg arts community, the Winnipeg Art Gallery (WAG)-Qaumajuq is hosting a free community program to honour the life and work of Cliff Eyland, an evening presented in conjunction with the exhibition Cliff Eyland: Library of Babel – A Retrospective. 

Cliff Eyland was an artist, writer, educator, and curator. In his art practice he is known for his prolific output and commitment to the 3×5” file card format inspired by library card catalogues. Cliff’s influence extended throughout the Winnipeg art community through his work as director with Gallery One One One (now known as the University of Manitoba School of Art Gallery) and his teaching at the University of Manitoba. His most public works are library commissions installed in Halifax, Edmonton, and locally here in Winnipeg at the Millennium Library, where his 3×5” file card format paintings are on display at the library entrance. 

This special event will feature a clip from Adam Brooks’ documentary film, Cliff: A Portrait of an Artist, followed by remarks by Dr. Stephen Borys, guest curator Robert B. Epp, and Cliff Eyland’s wife, Dr. Pam Perkins. Following the program, guests are invited to enjoy the exhibition and cash bar. 

The free event will take place Friday, April 29, 2022, at 7:00pm. 

 

Quick Facts:  

  • Cliff Eyland (1954-2020) was an artist, writer, educator, and curator, best known for his commitment to the 3×5” library file card format in his art. 
  • The exhibition Cliff Eyland: Library of Babel – A Retrospective, which features over 1,000 of Cliff Eyland’s paintings and drawings, is curated by longtime collaborator Robert B. Epp and inspired by ‘The Library of Babel,’ a short story by Argentine author Jorge Luis Borges and his notion of the library as the universe. 
  • An exhibition catalogue, Cliff Eyland: Library of Babel – A Retrospective, will be available for purchase at the WAG Shop. The catalogue highlights Eyland’s work and art practice through images and essays. Status Update, which explores a selection of the collaboration between George Toles and Cliff Eyland, is also available.  
  • Cliff Eyland: Library of Babel – A Retrospective is open until May 15, 2022.
  • The FREE reception includes entrance into the exhibition and a cash bar, and will take place Friday, April 29, 2022, at 7:00pm. 

 

Quotes: 

“Cliff Eyland was a gifted artist and brilliant intellectual. He will be remembered as a truly singular Canadian painter driven by the constant desire to create art that is at once provocative, playful, alien, and beautiful.” 

Robert B. Epp, Guest Curator, Cliff Eyland: Library of Babel – A Retrospective  

 

“Cliff found joy and inspiration in the vibrant Winnipeg arts communities in which he participated, and having his career celebrated through a WAG-Qaumajuq retrospective meant the world to him.  This splendid exhibition by Robert Epp is a marvellous tribute to his passion and creativity.” 

Dr. Pam Perkins, Distinguished Professor, University of Manitoba 

 

“Without a doubt, Cliff Eyland’s influence as an artist, educator, and curator has left an indelible mark on the Winnipeg arts community – and beyond. Cliff’s impact as an artist, curator, and educator can be seen in museums, libraries, and public spaces throughout the country. We are honoured to gather here at WAG-Qaumajuq and remember an artist oriented toward community and creation.” 

Dr. Stephen Borys, Director & CEO, WAG-Qaumajuq 

 

Support

The WAG thanks the Canada Council for the Arts for their support of Cliff Eyland: Library of Babel – A Retrospective.  

Our gratitude extends to Pam Perkins for her support of the exhibition catalogue. 

 

Associated Links  

Cliff Eyland Exhibition Reception 

Cliff Eyland: Library of Babel – A Retrospective 

Cliff Eyland website 

 

Stay Connected  

Follow us on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram #atwag 

  

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For more information or to arrange interviews, please contact:  

Hanna Waswa
Public Relations Officer
Winnipeg Art Gallery
204.789.1295
hwaswa@wag.ca
 

Amy Rebecca Harrison
Engagement Supervisor
Winnipeg Art Gallery
204.789.1347
aharrison@wag.ca 

 

The Winnipeg Art Gallery (WAG)-Qaumajuq 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. Opened in March 2021, Qaumajuq connects to the WAG on all levels, celebrating the largest public collection of contemporary Inuit art in the world. The new WAG-Qaumajuq cultural campus is now one of the largest art museums in Canada. To learn more visit wag.ca. 

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The Winnipeg Art Gallery is located on Treaty No. 1 the original lands and waters of Anishinaabe, Ininiwak, Anishininiwak, Dakota, and Dene peoples, and on the homeland of the Métis Nation.
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