Marc Chagall meets Esther Warkov: WAG Opens Three New Exhibits

Winnipeg, Manitoba, May 26, 2016: The Winnipeg Art Gallery is preparing for the opening of two exhibitions featuring famed 20th-century artist Marc Chagall, alongside a show highlighting Esther Warkov, one of Manitoba’s most distinctive painters. All three exhibits launch May 28 with a public opening at 7:00pm.

Presented in partnership with the National Gallery of Canada, Chagall: Daphnis & Chloé showcases 42 lithograph prints by the artist, widely considered the crowning achievement of his career as a printmaker. The NGC@WAG show is complemented by Chagall & Winnipeg, revealing the tale of friendship that developed between Chagall and former WAG Director Dr. Ferdinand Eckhardt. Both exhibits run until September 11.

On view until October 16, Esther Warkov: Paintings, 1960s-1980s presents a retrospective of the distinguished Winnipeg artist highlighting one of her defining periods.

“Spring is the perfect time to showcase Chagall’s vibrant work as part of our NGC@WAG partnership with the National Gallery Canada,” states Dr. Stephen Borys, WAG Director & CEO. “Visitors will learn about Chagall’s relationship to the WAG in Chagall & Winnipeg, and also experience an exciting display of paintings by celebrated Winnipeg artist Esther Warkov.”

Launched in 2013, NGC@WAG has resulted in the production of over ten exhibitions, bringing to Winnipeg some of the finest works in the national collection. The latest collaboration features Russian-born Jewish artist Chagall, a pioneer of modernism, and his illustrations of Daphnis & Chloé, depicting the semi-erotic tale written by the ancient Greek poet Longus.

Chagall: Daphnis & Chloé presents some of the treasures of the national collection seldomly shown in public given their fragility. The exhibition highlights Chagall’s unique style and fanciful, richly coloured imagery. The National Gallery is pleased to collaborate with the Winnipeg Art Gallery to make works from the National collection accessible to more Canadians” states NGC Director and CEO Marc Mayer.

In contrast to Chagall, Warkov’s work was forged in Winnipeg’s North End. Her stylized motifs reveal the clear influence of the Eastern European immigrant community into which she was born. The artist will be in attendance for the opening.

“Warkov is adamant that her paintings do not tell a specific story and invites the viewer to meander through her work,” states Andrew Kear, WAG curator of Historical Canadian Art and exhibition curator. “It is exceptional to view Warkov and Chagall alongside each other; the stylistic parallels are stunning.” 

In conjunction with Chagall, the public is invited to attend a talk and tour on May 28 at 3:00pm with Sonia Del Re, NGC Associate Curator of European, American and Asian Prints and Drawings. An Art for Lunch talk will be held June 8 with WAG curator Andrew Kear. Feast, a French dinner and tour of Chagall, is planned for June 16, July 14, and August 11. Tickets are available at Guided drop-in tours are also offered free with admission on various dates listed at Chagall-inspired summer art camps for kids are running in July and August, and Family Fusion days with hands-on activities are planned for July 24 and August 28. For details visit

The Warkov exhibit will be explored in guided, drop-in tours on the following dates: May 29; July 3; September 11, 25.

The WAG is grateful for the support of the Jewish Foundation of Manitoba, and Terracon Development Ltd and media sponsors: Pattison Outdoor Advertising, the Winnipeg Free Press, Classic 107, CTV Winnipeg, and Prairie Public Broadcasting.

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

Tammy Sawatzky
Public Relations Coordinator
Winnipeg Art Gallery


The Winnipeg Art Gallery is a cultural advocate – a lens and forum – helping people see and experience more through art. Playing a vital role in the community, engaging and enriching people of all ages and backgrounds through art and culture, the Winnipeg Art Gallery thrives as a creative, innovative, and accessible place for learning, discovery, and inspiration.



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