Our Exhibits

The Vancouver Art Gallery presents exhibitions of work by artists ranging from historic masters to leading-edge contemporaries. These include major thematic exhibitions, presentations of solo artists and smaller, more focused showcases. In a typical year, 2 to 3 exhibitions are borrowed from other institutions and 10 to 12 exhibitions are developed in-house, drawing on our permanent collection and loans of works from around the world. In addition, the Gallery tours a few of its exhibitions each year.

Touring Exhibitions

      ACROSS THE PROVINCE                      NATIONAL / INTERNATIONAL         

Across the Province

made possible with the generous support of the Killy Foundation

Across the Province is the Vancouver Art Gallery’s provincial touring program, which circulates exhibitions drawn from the Gallery’s permanent collection to partner institutions throughout British Columbia. Partners include: Art Gallery of Greater Victoria; Kamloops Art Gallery; Kelowna Art Gallery; Surrey Art Gallery; The Reach Gallery Museum, Abbotsford; Two Rivers Gallery, Prince George; and Nanaimo Art Gallery.

Image Credit: Annie Pootoogook, Listening to the Radio, 2005–06, pencil crayon, ink on paper, Collection of the Vancouver Art Gallery, Gift of Claudia Beck and Andrew Gruft, Photo: Trevor Mills, Vancouver Art Gallery

The Poetics of Space

The Poetics of Space features both historical and contemporary works that investigate the idea of space, whether visually, emotionally or conceptually founded. This exhibition takes its title from Gaston Bachelard's 1958 book of the same name that presents a psychic interpretation of "home".  In the text, Bachelard discusses the way our perceptions of shelter begin to delineate the very essence of how we think and imagine. Using this text as a starting point, the exhibition explores the symbolic meaning of spaces as tied to ideas of perception, memory, intimacy and experience.

Divided into three parts, the first section of the exhibition examines the ways artists have historically contended with conveying three-dimensional space on a two-dimensional plane. The second section of the exhibition presents a psychic interpretation of “home” and one’s prototypical experiences of personal space. The final section features works in which artists have conceptualized space in non-traditional ways, mapping it according to their own purposes or acknowledging its layered socio-cultural histories. As a whole, The Poetics of Space reveals the expansive and subjective ways in which artists have grappled with depicting and defining space.

This exhibition was first presented in 2015 at the Vancouver Art Gallery and features a range of works from the Gallery’s permanent collection including painting, drawing and photographyand includes both B.C.-based and international artists.

Kamloops Art Gallery
April 14 – June 30, 2018

Nanaimo Art Gallery
October 25, 2018 – January 6, 2019

Kelowna Art Gallery
February 1 – May 5, 2019

Organized and circulated by the Vancouver Art Gallery with the generous support of the Killy Foundation and is curated by Daina Augaitis, Associate Director, Vancouver Art Gallery and Emmy Lee Wall, Assistant Curator, Vancouver Art Gallery


The Vancouver Art Gallery presents approximately 15 temporary exhibitions annually, from which it selects major in-house curated exhibitions to travel to museums and galleries across Canada and around the world.

Howie Tsui: Retainers of Anarchy

The Gallery co-presents Vancouver-based artist Howie Tsui at OCAT Xi’an, China. Retainers of Anarchy is an amalgamation of fantastical martial arts tropes and characters woven together with threads of social and political realities in present-day Hong Kong to produce an artistic counter-narrative in the form of a large-scale animated hand drawing.

Born in Hong Kong and raised in Lagos, Nigeria and Thunder Bay, Ontario, Tsui straddles multiple worlds. For more than a decade, he has explored Asian history and pop culture, creating ironic cross-references to bring contradictions to the fore. We acknowledge the support of the Canada Council for the Arts.

OCAT – Xi'an, China
November 3, 2018 – January 31, 2019

Organized and circulated by the Vancouver Art Gallery, and curated by Diana Freundl, Associate Curator, Asian Art.

To learn more about our available touring exhibitions, please contact curatorial@vanartgallery.bc.ca