Lectures and Talks

Art Connects | Artist Talk: Ken Lum

Tue May 26, 2020 | 1:30 PM

Vancouver Art Gallery

Tuesday, May 26 | 1:30 PM


Stay home. Stay safe. Stay connected with our new series of online gatherings, Art Connects!

In this edition of Art Connects, the Gallery invites Ken Lum to speak about his artistic practice. The renowned Vancouver-born artist will take a look back at a selection of his works in the Gallery’s permanent collection and reflect on his first career retrospective, presented at the Gallery in 2011.

We will also hear how Lum has been coping during the pandemic while living in the United States. As Lum has written in a featured essay in Canadian Art, “[i]t is through art that I am constantly challenged to understand the world and my place within it, even if that place is one that I am not entirely at home in.”

In conversation with Melissa Lee, Director of Education and Public Programs.

Questions? Submit them during the Zoom presentation using the Q&A function. You can also engage with your fellow attendees and panelists during the event using the Chat function.

New to Zoom? Learn how to register and attend a webinar here »


Vancouver-born artist Ken Lum has produced iconic artworks that speak to the complexities of class, race, labour and language, always framed by his mordant sense of humour. A prolific writer, teacher and artist, Lum is best known for his public artworks as well as his thinking about monuments. He is known worldwide for his conceptual and representational art in a number of media, including painting, sculpture and photography. Lum is currently the Marilyn J Taylor Presidential Professor and Chair of the Department of Fine Arts in the Weitzman School of Design, at the University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia. He has also taught at the University of British Columbia in Vancouver, where he was Head of Graduate Studio Fine Arts. A founding editor of the Yishu Journal of Contemporary Chinese Art, he has published extensively, including an artist’s book project he co-conceived with philosopher Hubert Damisch. He has an active and long art exhibition record including Documenta 11, the Venice Biennale, Sao Paulo Biennal, Shanghai Biennale, Carnegie Triennial, Sydney Biennale, Liverpool Biennial and Gwangju Biennale, among others. He has had solo exhibitions at the Kunstmuseum Luzern, Witte de With Center for Contemporary Art in Rotterdam, Badischer Kunstverein in Karlsruhe, National Gallery of Canada and Vancouver Art Gallery. Since the mid-1990s, Lum has worked on numerous major permanent public art commissions including for the cities of Vienna, the Engadines (Switzerland), Rotterdam, St. Louis, Leiden, Utrecht, Toronto and Vancouver. He has also realized temporary public art commissions in Stockholm, Istanbul, Torun (Poland), Innsbruck and Kansas City. In 2017 he was made an Officer of the Order of Canada. In February 2020, Lum was awarded the Gershon Iskowitz Prize and a Governor General of Canada award in Visual and Media Arts.


Presented by: