The Art Gallery of Ontario

The Art Gallery of Ontario
I’ve lived in this great city of ours in Toronto Ontario for 40 ..something years and I have never visited the Art Gallery.  It was founded in 1900 by a group of private citizens, then known as the Art Gallery of Toronto.  It has over half a million square feet in physical space making it the largest art Gallery in North America!

Still I have never even really desired to go.  I have been to the Royal Ontario Museum a few times, but not the Art Gallery.  It has a certain stigma to it.  The idea of standing in front of a picture or pictures and staring at it as it hangs perfectly on a wall behind a piece of delicate glass where I can’t or won’t be allowed to touch it, or take a picture of it even..well that did not strike me as an interesting day out.


Until of course today when I saw the masters and all that they produce.  Hundreds of years ago with the likes of Monet, Rembrandt a tiny sketch of Michelangelo, some drop dead gorgeous paintings from the European masters such as Thomas Gainsborough, Auguste Rodin, Claude Monet, Edgar Degas, Paul Cézanne, Vincent van Gogh, Pablo Picasso and René Magritte. 

Modern Art?
Please if I may say a word about modern art? It was difficult for me to see masterpieces from individuals carving statues out of ivory or marble or tiny books inscribed by hand that took years of someone’s life compared to something that looked like pieces of odds and ends in a junk yard that just squashed together and called artwork? 

I suppose beauty is in the eye of the beholder and that is what the essence of the Art Gallery is all about.  You are not allowed to take photographs inside the gallery, but it is well worth a visit because there is something really special about looking at the white paint that was brushed on an eyelid creating an effect, or that tiny thin hair of an eyebrow that was put there painstakingly by an artist.  You just don’t get the same thing from a book or the internet.  You have to actually be there to see what I mean.

Right now the ‘Maharaja’ display is on until the end of the month.  The Art Gallery is expensive if you’re not a member.

Check website for details: http://www.ago.net/visit