“True Nordic:” Scandinavia & Canadian Culture at Vancouver Art Gallery | BLOUIN ARTINFO
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“True Nordic:” Scandinavia & Canadian Culture at Vancouver Art Gallery

Lars Dressler and Jason Dressler, Brothers Dressler Branches Chandelier, 2009 white oak wood
(Courtesy of Brothers Dressler Photo: Brothers Dressler)

A conversation between the cultures of two countries takes place at the Vancouver Art Gallery this winter. “True Nordic: How Scandinavia Influenced Designed in Canada” is the title of this show that explores the vital influence of Scandinavian craft and industrial design on the evolution of Canadian culture. The show runs at the Vancouver gallery until early February 2018.

Featuring works from the past seven decades, the exhibit explains the way Scandinavian design was introduced in Canada and the manner in which its aesthetics and material forms were adopted, revised, and transformed. On display in the exhibit is a large-scale collection of furniture, textiles, ceramics, glass and metalwork - objects that offer an analytical survey of Canadian design practices from the 1930s to the present.

Scandinavian design found its way into Canada through traveling exhibitions, designer showrooms, and representations in popular magazines. However, its significant influence on Canadian design and craft production is connected to the influx of immigrants from the region during the Depression and after the Second World War. These new Canadians, often with expertise in the craft traditions of their native land, introduced the locals to a modern and functional aesthetic. Scandinavian crafts often made use of natural materials, had simplicity in its shape and boasted of expressive imagery - something that was appreciated much by the Canadian counterparts. The result was a new national design language that continues to influence artisans till the present day.

The show, organized by the Gardiner Museum, Toronto, has on showcase, more than a hundred prototypes, designer originals, limited editions and mass-produced wares. "True Nordic" concentres the enduring legacy of Scandinavian design principles in Canada.

Names like Niels Bendtsen, Bocci, Karen Bulow, Kjeld and Erica Deichmann, Thor Hansen, Andrew Jones, Janis Kravis, Carl Poul Petersen, Rudolph Renzius, and Marion Smith, are among the many designers whose works feature in this exhibit.

"True Nordic: How Scandinavia Influenced Design in Canada" is on view through February 4, 2018, at  Vancouver Art Gallery, 750 Hornby St, Vancouver, BC V6Z 2H7, Canada.

For details, visit: www.blouinartinfo.com/galleryguide/vancouver-art-gallery/overview

Click on the slideshow for a sneak peek at the exhibition.