The Centre for All Canadians

Donald Andrus: A Retrospective

In the early 1990s, Donald Andrus began painting again after an almost 25-year hiatus, during which he pursued an academic career. Since moving to Prince Edward Island in 1998, Andrus has been productive in a range of mediums. This exhibition aims to provide an overview of this period of the artist’s career, featuring highlights from his various bodies of work, ranging from drawings and abstract painting to his later portraits.

Donald Andrus has always been engaged with the core issues of painting. Abstraction, or non-objective painting, was his dominant mode until 2010. Through this practice, oppositions are held in tension. Painting is at once an idealized world, separate from everyday concerns, and also a material object—the result of physical processes, direct manipulation of materials, as well as the artist’s choices. In his abstract work, Andrus has taken up the challenge of entering into the web of expectations that have surrounded “pure painting.” Andrus creates a bridge between the real (world) and abstraction as “imaginative truth.”

When Andrus developed a separate practice of figurative portrait painting, starting in 2010, the works remained emphatically material, bearing the marks and residual wear-and-tear of their making. The Cadenza series, which launched Andrus’s portrait practice, is characterized by the tension between the image of a given subject’s face and the materiality of painting conveyed by the works’ cracked and scratched surfaces.

Curated by Ihor Holubizky and Pan Wendt

Join us at the Confederation Centre Art Gallery at 7 PM on March 9 for the book launch of Donald Andrus: The Shape of Desire.

Photo credit: ICARUS No. 21, 2106, mixed mediums on canvas, 48” X 36” (121.9 X 91.4 cm)


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