TRIBUTE + TRIBUTARIES AT THE AGO: A critical show looking at Toronto from 1971 – 1989

Wanda Nanibush in front of  “Culture Revolution” at the AGO (


TRIBUTE + TRIBUTARIES was an exhibition that ran from 2016 and only recently closed the end of May, 2017 at the Art Gallery of Ontario. The show was curated by Wanda Nanibush who was the newly appointed curator of Indigenous art, a first, at the time of the opening.

The group show, that included artists 65 artists, was well received with much press covering the exhibition.



Exploring the experimental energy of an era, Toronto: Tributes + Tributaries, 1971-1989 brings together more than 100 works by 65 artists and collectives to highlight an innovative period in Toronto art history. Amidst the social and political upheavals of their time, the generation of artists that emerged in Toronto during the 1970s and 1980s pushed the boundaries of conventional painting, sculpture and photography, exploring new ways of art making including video, installation and performance. Drawing heavily from the AGO collection Toronto: Tributes + Tributaries, 1971-1989 fills the entire fourth floor of the AGO’s Contemporary Tower. (read more…)



THE TORONTO STAR – AT THE AGO, A RIVER THAT FLOWS, FINALLY, IN MULTIPLE DIRECTIONS: Toronto: Tributes + Tributaries taps into rich wells of material outside the city’s more official art history (Murray Whyte)

To put a fine point on it, Tributes + Tributaries opens with a bang: a towering photo-portrait of Bear, son of First Nations artist Jeff Thomas, from 1984 against the crumbling brick of a downtown-Toronto streetscape. It sends a signal: historically, the city is where colonial reality begins, but it’s also where theirs, as free indigenous people, ends.

THE GLOBE & MAIL – AGO exhibition tackles an era of social turbulence in Toronto (Brad Wheeler)

THE NATIONAL POST – How the AGO is finally paying tribute to the Indigenous art it previously didn’t appreciate (Laura Pedersen)

NOW TORONTO – New AGO curator Wanda Nanibush shines light on Toronto art in the 80s (Fran Schechter)

MOMUS – Toronto the Good, in Two Histories (Philip Monk)


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