History

Hamilton Artists Inc. (The Inc.) is a charitable, not-for-profit artist-run centre. Founded in 1975 by a core group of area artists reacting to the lack of professional exhibition venues available, the original Hamilton Artists’ Co-op was initiated as an arena for artists to exhibit artwork and meet with their peers to promote art production in the City of Hamilton. The gallery received operations funding in 1976 and received charitable status in 1981 after its incorporation as an artist-run centre in 1979. Since its inception, The Inc. has been committed to the values of artist-run culture, offering an alternative to commercial spaces and established public galleries and museums by providing artists with opportunities for critical engagement, exploration, and risk-taking.

In 1988, V. Jane Gordon established a Curatorial Committee to encourage regional research, curating and writing using the model of artist-as-curator.  Building on this strategy, the current Programming Committee continues to initiate curatorial investigations, community partnerships and off-site projects. We serve members of our community at all stages in their careers by presenting local, national, and international exhibitions, workshops, artist talks, and professional development services. As a member-driven organization, we provide our more than 250 members with an accessible and inclusive forum to address the social and professional needs of artists through workshops, lectures, and our dedicated Members’ Gallery.

In 2011, with the support of committed members and financial support from public funders and private donors, The Inc. opened the doors to a brand new, fully accessible facility, owned and operated by Hamilton Artists Inc. In 2015, The Inc. celebrated its 40th anniversary and launched the ArcelorMittal Dofasco Courtyard. In 2016, The Inc. implemented a new role of Executive Director. In 2016-2017, The New Committee was developed, an Inc. initiative that organizes events and forms partnerships to increase the representation of Indigenous peoples, visible minorities, and other marginalized groups in the arts and provide anti-oppression resources and educational opportunities for people involved in art and culture in Hamilton. The Inc. continues to define and disseminate a regional dialogue within a national and international context by presenting challenging contemporary artwork, fostering local artist initiatives, and stimulating critical discourse.

A shortlist of our programming includes:

2018 [Res]idual – Group exhibition featuring works by Audie Murray, KC Adams, Tania Willard, Thirza Jean Cuthand, and tunchai redvers. Curated by Chelsea Brant. Catalogue texts by Chelsea Brant, Shelley Niro, and tunchai redvers.

2017 Never cut with a knife what you can cut with a spoon – Group exhibition featuring works by Richard Ibghy & Marilou Lemmens, Kelly Mark, members of (F)NOR (Donna Akrey, Margaret Flood & Svava Thordis Juliusson), Hazel Meyer, and Jo-Anne Balcaen. Curated by Caitlin Sutherland.

2017 Domestic Brew: Craft Beer Garden and Domestic Brew: 99 Bottles of Beer on the Wall – Installations by Shake-n-Make (Liss Platt and Claudia B. Manley) on the Cannon Project Wall and in the ArcelorMittal Dofasco Courtyard. Essay by Stephanie Vegh.

2016 3rd Stage – An installation by Reece Terris in the ArcelorMittal Dofasco Courtyard. Essay by Benjamin Prus.

2016 Warmblood – A solo exhibition by Vicky Sabourin. Essay by Daniella Sanader.

2015-16 Tapestry: Queering the Gaze – Photographic installation by JJ Levine on the Cannon Project Wall. Essay by Shauna Jean Doherty.

2015 Visual Poetics of Embodied Shame – A solo exhibition by Chun Hua Catherine Dong. Essay by Victoria Sung.

2015 Into the Wild – A group exhibition curated by Caitlin Sutherland and featuring work by Sonny Assu, Jason Brown, Leisure, Duane Linklater, Alex McLeod, Darren Rigo, Elinor Whidden, Young & Giroux, as well as select works from the permanent collections of the Art Gallery of Hamilton and the Workers Arts and Heritage Centre.

2014 HERE – A solo exhibition by Berenicci Hershorn, accompanied by an extended publication with writing by Andrea Carvalho, Paul Couillard, Elizabeth Chitty, Shannon Cochrane, and Andrew James Peterson.

2014 Butterflies: Species at Risk at the Edge of Reason – An exhibition by Robyn Moody.

2013-2014 Tour China: Yam Lau – Cannon Wall Project, Curated by Irene Loughlin.

2013 Addressing Nature: Works by Johannes Zits. Essay by Corrie Jackson.

2012 Jacked! An exhibition by Steven Laurie.

2011 4 from 6: Four Artists From Six Nations – Curated by Shelley Niro, featuring works by Brenda Mitten, Tracey Anthony, Jay Carrier, and Elliott Graham Doxtater Wynn. Essay by Ryan Rice.

2010 Mooswa, Muskwa, PuskwaMoostoos: Digital Creations with Immemorial Relations – An exhibition of video/installation and digital paintings by Cree artist Jude Norris.  Essay by Tannis Nielsen.

2009 Carbon Interiorities – Interarts residency with Vida Simon and Rachel Echenberg.  Essay by Curator Irene Loughlin.

2008  Histoires – Paintings by Acadian artist Mario Doucette.  Essay by Erin Langille.

Off site 2008  The Urban Moorings Project  Cootes Paradise Royal Botanical Gardens – Public Art Installation by Tor Lukasik-Foss, Steve Mazza, Susan Detwiler, Noel Harding, David Acheson.  Curated by Nora Hutchinson.  Catalogue Essays by Irene Loughlin, Nora Hutchinson and John Terpstra.

2007  Attila Richard Lukacs Essay by Sky Gilbert.

2007 Environs An exploration of Colina Maxwell, Matt McInnes, John Smith and Mirela Zdjelaric.  Essay by Curator Jim Riley.

2007 Edgey Fred Bilanzola Retrospective – Co-production with Art Gallery of Hamilton and Carnegie Gallery. In memory of Ferdinando Bilanzola (1956-2001).  Catalogue Essay by Bryce Kanbara.

2006 drift drag  An Exhibition by Fae Logie.

2006  Tune In, Turn On, Bleach Out  Marcia Huyer.  Essay by Anne Milne.

2005  In The Shadows:  An Exchange between Artcite, Windsor and Hamilton Artists Inc.  Catalogue Essay by Curator Simon Frank.

2004  Affectations Contact Festival Photographic works by Susan Dobson, Susan Bozic.

2003  Superstition II  An Exhibition by FASTWÜRMS

2002  Allegories  An Exhibition by Catherine Heard

2001 Photophobia 3 screening included recent works by film and video producers from across Canada, including Michael Balser, Pierre-Yves Cruaud, Lisa Hayes, Peter Karuna, Charles Officer, Su Rynard, Kika Thorne, Ian Toews, Jessie Wallace and others. Produced by The Art Gallery of Hamilton, Hamilton Artists Inc., Hamilton & Region Arts Council and Trinity Square Video.

Off-site 2000 Exile on James Street Jane Adeney, Michael Allgoewer, Dianne Bos, Gary Buttrum, Chris Eddy, Simon Frank, Chris Hortnett, Juliet Jancso, Ivan Jurakic, Laurie Kilgore, Tor Lukasik-Foss, Machyderm Inc., Rick Pottruff, Marianne Reim, Matt Schofield, Matthew Walker.  Publication Essays by C. Wells and Shirley Madill.

Off-site, 2000 Zone 6B: Art in the Environment Michael Allgoewer, Marlene Creates, Aganetha Dyck, Fastwürms, Alan Flint, Simon Frank, Marguerite Larmand, Mike MacDonald, Shelley Niro, Reinhard Reitzenstein, Peter von Tiesenhausen.
Publication essays by  Ivan Jurakic and Shirley Madill.

1999 Kelly Mark: Messages   In partnership with “Kelly Mark: 9 to 5” at the Art Gallery of Hamilton.  Co-Publication Essays by Ivan Jurakic, Shirley Madill, Cliff Eyland, Eileen Sommerman

1998  Industrial Strength Drawing: Rick Pottruff vs. Paul Walty Publication Essay by Gary Michael Dault.

1997  Communities  Spencer J. Harrison, Soonki Park Schaub, Marguerite Larmand, Sandra Vida & Cat Cayuga Publication Essay by Carol Podedworny

1993  Photo Re:Union Anne Milne

1994  Subconscious Mythologies Ivan Jurakic

1997  Valve Paul Ropel-Morski

1989 Shikata Ga Nai Bryce Kanbara

1988  The Eccentric Furniture Show V. Jane Gordon

Selected Community Programming Initiatives

2010-2009  New Harbours Sound Art Music Series  James St North Artcrawl, St Paul’s Cathedral.

2009 Massimo Grimaldi Installation presented in collaboration with The Art Gallery of Hamilton TURN ON Series:  Italian Contemporary Art.

2008  Carl Brown  Exhibition and Screening of the work Blue Monet Essay/Interview by Curator Josephine Massarella.

2008  Duality Games and Chirajito:  Clown Painter  Rita Kamacho and Ulysses Castellanos  Relational Performance Art at Mex-i-Can Restaurant, James St North, Hamilton, ON

2007 Considerations: Art from Wesley Urban Ministries  Wesley Urban Ministries Hamilton, ON

2007 Digital Dubscapes: Multi-Arts Installation/Event hosted by Klyde Broox

2007 Francois Morelli workshops in collaboration with youth at Jamesville Community Centre, co-produced with the Art Gallery of Hamilton.

(Limited copies of Publications noted are available at the gallery)

 

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