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October 04, 2002 - Image 111

Resource type:
The Detroit Jewish News, 2002-10-04

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About LOW

The Art Gallery of Windsor has had
different homes in its quest to focus
attention on the works of Canadian
artists. Launched in 1943 at
Winstead Manor, where borrowed
exhibits were featured, the gallery
became incorporated in -1944, when it
began building its own collection.
The AGW moved into a renovated
brewery warehouse on the riverftont in
1975 and temporarily relocated to the

V Cut; a 1967 acrylic on unprimed
canvas, was found through an art
dealer in Toronto almost 20 years
later. It had been exhibited at the
1967 "Sao Paulo IX Biennial
"We always thought that the more
abstract, the better," Baker says.
"Abstract work is never boring. People
can see more each time they look."
Two other Canadian artists repre-
sented in the Baker exhibit include
Michael Matthews and Paul Hutner.
Matthews' artistry can be seen in an
abstracted landscape from his Prairie
Diamond series, while Hutner's style is
showcased in a gestural work titled


High Park.
The entire collection ranges from a
welded steel sculpture, Table Piece, by
British artist Anthony Caro, to a non-
representational painting, Circular
Presence, by Russian-born American
artist Jules Olitski, one of the world's
leading post-painterly abstractionists.
Two other American artists, Alex
Katz and Frank Stella, also have a
presence. Stella's style is showcased in
two of his signature pieces, Monkey
Rope, a lithograph, etching aquatint,
relief and silkscreen, and Bene come it
Sale, an etching, aqautint and colored
relief print. Katz, at the forefront of
the Pop and American neo-realist
movements and best known for his
flat, dispassionate portraits, demon-
strates his approach through a photo-
lithograph of poet John Ashbery.
Of personal importance is Gamos, a
welded structure by the late
Michigan-based sculptor Joseph
Wesner. The Bakers knew Wesner as
head of sculpture instruction at the
College for Creative Studies in
Detroit. He had been a student at
Cranbrook Academy of Art.
"The Bakers show a very good eye
for art," says Glen Cumming, director
of the AGW. "They collected a diver-
sity of contemporary work, and there
aren't many pieces by Jack Bush avail-
able now. Their choices make for a

Devonshire Mall in 1993, when its direc-
tors decided to rent its rivet-front site to
the Province of Ontario. The gallery
returned to its former waterfront area in
2001, when it entered a new building.
The gallery has nearly 2,900 works of
art, including paintings, drawings,
prints, photos, sculptures, illustrations
and videos. The pieces reach back to
1750 and show their greatest numbers
in later 19th-century Canadian paintings
and works of the early 20th century

--- Suzanne Chessler

good educational tool, particularly for
young art students, who can see an
array of different options they might
The AGW normally acquires about
50 works per year as a result of dona-
tions and purchases, which are funded
by grants, bequests and other mone-
tary gifts. In 2001, more than 175
sculptures, drawings, paintings, prints
and photographs were added to the
permanent collection for use in future
exhibitions and public programming.
There are no ongoing exhibits at
the gallery. Instead, traveling works
and theme shows go on display.
The Baker Foundation, in another
donation, recently gave 100 images by
this country's most notable photogra-
phers to the University of Michigan,
where Morris Baker earned a degree
in architecture and Beverly Baker
graduated in music. That gift was
shown at the university's Museum of
"My husband was a very careful
purchaser," Beverly Baker says. "He
would look at a work he liked for a
very long time before making a deci-
sion. He wanted to be sure it was
right for our collection.
"One important consideration in
donating art is the facilities the receiv-
ing institution has in maintaining the
works. I'm sure that the Art Gallery of
Windsor will be a good place to keep
these pieces." ❑


E esy


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