Lectures and Talks

The Gallery's public lectures, classes and discussion groups presented by artists, curators, art historians, critics and collectors are springboards for understanding and appreciating the world of art and visual culture, for exchanging ideas and for debating issues. These events take many forms, ranging from traditional slide presentations to informal artists' talks in the galleries. They bring renowned scholars, critics and artists to Vancouver, setting local art and artists in an international framework and drawing together some of the brightest minds of our time.

For more information please call 604.662.4700

Visionary Partner for Art Education:
Ji Ping Bai

Video Documentation

Visit the Gallery's video page, to view documentation of lectures and talks.

Vimeo - Vancouver Art Gallery
Image credit: Walden Pond, Concord, MA, Photo: jcsullivan24, CC BY-NC 2.0
JUL 24
TUES 6:30pm
1st and 2nd Floor
at the Gallery
Reclusive Cosmopolitans:
A Series of Poetry Activations

David Milne: Modern Painting and Cabin Fever

In conjunction with the exhibitions David Milne: Modern Painting and Cabin Fever, join us for a series of poetry interventions in the galleries, taking place on selected Tuesday evenings through June and July. This series of programs will provide a space for the literary and visual arts to convene and find new ways of relating to each other.

Poems will be selected and performed throughout these exhibitions by Danielle LaFrance, Colin Browne, Shazia Hafiz Ramji, and Kerriann Cardinal, among others. Using the ideas of retreat and solitude as a starting point, texts selected will be read, sung or otherwise offer different kinds of encounters with the work on view at the Gallery. The texts recited by the poets represent a dialogue with the exhibitions and their concerns—be it an interrogation, an argument, an appreciation, a love letter, a question, a complaint, a commentary, a contextualization—performing myriad ways of engaging.


COLIN BROWNE’s most recent collection, The Hatch, was published by Talonbooks in 2015. Entering Time: The Fungus Man Platters of Charles Edenshaw, a book-length essay exploring three argillite platters carved by Haida artist Charles Edenshaw, appeared in 2016, also from Talonbooks. His most recent project, Music for a Night in May, a collaboration with composer Alfredo Santa Ana for soprano and string quartet, was premiered at the Vancouver East Cultural Centre in May 2018. “Unfinished Business,” an essay about the Nisga’a song at the heart of the Canadian opera Louis Riel was published online by The Capilano Review in spring 2018. Browne was guest curator for the Vancouver Art Gallery’s 2016 exhibition, I Had an Interesting French Artist to See Me this Summer: Emily Carr and Wolfgang Paalen in British Columbia. He was a founder of the Kootenay School of Writing and taught in the School for the Contemporary Arts at Simon Fraser University. He is currently working on a new collection of poetry, The Here, which will appear in 2019.

SHAZIA HAFIZ RAMJI received the Robert Kroetsch Award for Innovative Poetry for Port of Being, forthcoming with Invisible Publishing in fall 2018. She was a finalist for the National Magazine Awards and Alberta Magazine Awards. Her fiction has been longlisted for the Fiddlehead's 2018 fiction prize and received an honourable mention for The Humber Literary Review’s 2018 Emerging Writers Fiction Contest. Her poetry is forthcoming in Best Canadian Poetry 2018.

DANIELLE LAFRANCE lives, writes, and works on occupied and stolen Musqueam, Squamish, and Tsleil-Waututh lands. She is the author of two books of poetry, species branding (Capilano University Editions 2010) and Friendly + Fire (Talonbooks 2016). Between 2012 - 2016, she co-organized the feminist materialist collective and journal series About a Bicycle, with Anahita Jamali Rad. Recent attempts at Spanish-English poetry translations have been published on the online magazine inPeregrinos y sus Letras and in The Capilano Review. Her writing is marked with militancy, feminism, resistance, and "a cappella pornography" (Cam Scott) that relentlessly aims to look at and break apart the radical root of things. "The only way out is through" (Anita Phillips).

KERRIANN CARDINAL calls Vancouver home but is originally from Fort McMurray, Alberta. When she isn’t back packing in the mountains or practicing yoga she can be found working on various projects that encourage and create discourse on subjects that are socially relevant, educational and empowering. She is an actor, story teller and creative collaborator. Her experience working with other artists, community members, youth and the public in various capacities and in diverse settings such as festivals, special events, film/tv, theatre and music continues to inspire her to engage in relevant and meaningful work. Kerriann believes we all have stories to share whether it be on stage, on social media or over tea with a friend.

Image credit: Kevin Schmidt, DIY HIFI, 2014–16, Wood, Lowther DX55 speakers, DIY kit tube amplifier, cables, hardware.Courtesy of the Artist and Catriona Jeffries, Vancouver
JUL 14
SAT 3pm

3rd Floor Gallery
Free for members or with Gallery admission
Utopian Possibility
Curator’s Tour with Grant Arnold
Kevin Schmidt: We Are The Robots

Join Grant Arnold, Audain Curator of British Columbia Art, for a tour of Kevin Schmidt: We Are The Robots. The exhibition presents Schmidt’s exploration of DIY knowledge production, pointing at both the utopian aspects of wide distribution of knowledge over the Internet and the simultaneous pressures to commodify and brand knowledge that circulates through this system.  Drawing upon the origin of the Czech word ‘robota’—meaning ‘forced work’—Arnold will highlight the ways in which Schmidt asks the viewer to consider the systems and mechanisms through which popular culture is reproduced.

Grant Arnold is the Audain Curator of British Columbia Art at the Vancouver Art Gallery, where he contributes to the exhibition program and development of the collection. Recent exhibition projects include Pictures From Here; Susan Point: Spindle Whorl (with Ian Thom); and SPIRITLANDS: (t)HERE Marian Penner Bancroft Selected Photo Works 1975–2000. Arnold has contributed essays to a number of publications and has lectured on historical and contemporary art at a variety of conferences and institutions. He received his M.A. in art history from the University of British Columbia in 1996, after studying at the University of Saskatchewan and the Banff School of Fine Arts
Image credit: Kevin Schmidt, DIY HIFI, 2014–16, Wood, Lowther DX55 speakers, DIY kit tube amplifier, cables, hardware.Courtesy of the Artist and Catriona Jeffries, Vancouver
JUL 20
FRI 7pm

3rd Floor Gallery
Free for members or with Gallery admission
Amateur Quests
Artist Talk with Kevin Schmidt
Kevin Schmidt: We Are The Robots

Interested in the aesthetics of knowledge production by DIY communities, Kevin Schmidt replicates the processes and modes of address to manifest utopian ideas. For this conversational and participatory tour, join the artist as he invites visitors to be implicated in the processes of production, listening and learning with the interactive and instructional components of the works on display. 

*TICKETED EVENT | All programming is in the Gallery and free with Gallery Admission unless otherwise indicated.
Dates and times are subject to change. Please check back for complete up-to-date listings.