Exhibition celebrating works of Grace Nickel opens at WAG-Qaumajuq
Grace Nickel, master ceramicist, is the 2023 recipient of the Saidye Bronfman Award
Winnipeg, Manitoba, May 24, 2023: The Winnipeg Art Gallery (WAG)-Qaumajuq is pleased to announce the opening of Grace Nickel: Inter Artes et Naturam (Between Art and Nature) in partnership with the Manitoba Craft Council.
Over the course of her career, Grace Nickel’s observational approach has led her to explore themes of devastation, memorial, and our cultural relationship to mortality. Nickel’s artwork has been exhibited both nationally and internationally — including the 2002 solo show A Quiet Passage: Grace Nickel at the Winnipeg Art Gallery. Nickel’s studio practice embraces new technologies and methods by building on traditional ceramic histories and processes. Today, she primarily produces experiential sculptural installations, introducing organic forms to more familiar porcelain shapes like vases or columns. For instance, Nickel often references textures drawn from nature, especially trees, as a metaphoric proxy for the cyclical nature of the human body and human existence.
This solo show is a celebration of a leading Manitoban artist recognized worldwide for her innovative work and technical skill. Inter Artes et Naturam (Between Art and Nature) opens to the public on May 27, 2023.
- Grace Nickel is an artist and educator. Nickel’s art practice is focused on sculptural ceramics and installation. She investigates how material, process, and scale impart meaning to form and how they influence the aesthetic qualities of studio work in an exploration of traditional and new technologies.
- Inter Artes et Naturam (Between Art and Nature) was curated by Tammy Sutherland, Director of the Manitoba Craft Council and Dr. Riva Symko, Head of Collections & Exhibitions and Curator of Canadian Art at WAG-Qaumajuq.
- Grace Nickel has won awards in the Mino International Ceramics Competition and the Taiwan Ceramics Biennale, and has had numerous solo exhibitions in Canada, including at the Art Gallery of Nova Scotia, the Winnipeg Art Gallery, the Art Gallery of Burlington, and the Moose Jaw Museum & Art Gallery. Her work can be found in permanent collections including the Museum of Modern Ceramic Art in Gifu, Japan, the New Taipei City Yingge Ceramics Museum in Taiwan, and the Fule International Ceramic Art Museums project in China. She has participated in the Cheongju International Craft Biennale, in Korea, and her work has been selected for several NCECA Annual Exhibitions in the United States. Nickel currently teaches at the University of Manitoba and lives in Winnipeg.
- Established by the Bronfman family in 1977, the Saidye Bronfman Award is the most prestigious distinction in fine crafts in Canada. Each year, the Canadian Museum of History acquires either a single work or a series of works by the winner. The Award is administered and promoted by the Canada Council for the Arts as part of the Governor General’s Awards in Visual and Media Arts.
“Inter Artes et Naturam (Between Art and Nature) embraces the fullness of Grace Nickel’s contemplative vision of mortality and cyclical remembrance. We’re thrilled to partner with the Manitoba Craft Council to bring forward this exquisitely crafted exhibition of Grace’s work; the connective threads between pieces become almost visible as you pass through the Gallery.”
— Dr. Stephen Borys, Director & CEO, WAG-Qaumajuq
“I am so pleased to be presenting a small peak into Grace’s phenomenal oeuvre here at WAG-Qaumajuq. Her thoughtful, studied approach to the workings of nature, and to the processes of ceramics is evident throughout this exhibition. In fact, the show itself can be experienced as a single, cohesive artwork unto itself – indicative of the ways in which the artist continues to build upon her work as an evolving set of practices, ideas, and research.”
— Dr. Riva Symko, Head of Collections & Exhibitions and Curator of Canadian Art, WAG-Qaumajuq
“Grace Nickel’s reputation for painstaking research, persistence in exploring new territory, and exquisite craftsmanship have earned her the respect and recognition of colleagues, critics, and curators at an international, national, and local level. We’re thrilled to partner with WAG-Qaumajuq to present a solo exhibition of her work, giving visitors a glimpse into why she was selected as 2023 recipient of the prestigious Saidye Bronfman Award.”
— Tammy Sutherland, Director, Manitoba Craft Council
WAG-Qaumajuq thanks the Manitoba Craft Council for their partnership.
For more information or to arrange interviews, please contact:
Public Relations Officer
Winnipeg Art Gallery
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.