Material Tells
23 June – 8 September 2019

Oakville Galleries in Gairloch Gardens & at Centennial Square

Taking the politics of making as its point of departure, this group exhibition explores the cultural meanings that emerge from the materials artists use. Each of the eleven artists on view brings to the fore often-overlooked narratives, reconstituting and revising images, objects and histories through their unique material engagement.

Several artists engage social and political narratives that lie embedded within everyday provisions, such as sugar, textiles, flowers, and clay. Others use materials such as resin, steel, bronze, and wax to share intimate stories, whether about domesticity, family history, migration, or belonging. Read together, each of the works in Material Tells suggests a fluid and nuanced understanding of how histories and their subjects come to be, reflecting on the processes by which cultural narratives are pieced together, broken apart and otherwise reconfigured in the hands of artists.

Curated by Daisy Desrosiers

Participating artists

Alvaro Barrington, Kevin Beasley, Shannon Bool, Beverly Buchanan, Jesse Chun, Marie-Michelle Deschamps, Azza El Siddique, Ja'Tovia Gary, Felix Gonzalez-Torres, Iris Häussler, and Kapwani Kiwanga.

Opening Hours

in Gairloch Gardens

Tuesday & Wednesday: 1:00 pm–5:00 pm
Thursday: 1:00 pm–8:00 pm
Friday: 1:00 pm–5:00 pm
Saturday: 10:00 am–5:00 pm
Sunday: 1:00 pm–5:00 pm

at Centennial Square

Tuesday to Thursday: 11:00 am–9:00 pm
Friday: 12:00 pm–5:00 pm
Saturday: 10:00 am–5:00 pm
Sunday: 1:00 pm–5:00 pm

Please note that the Galleries will be closed Sunday 1 September 2019.

Related Programs

Family Art Workshop

25 August 2019

Bring the whole family to Oakville Galleries for a free art workshop inspired by the work of Iris Häussler as seen in Material Tells. Take in a brief tour of the show, then head into our Education Centre where participants will use fabric and other found materials to make collages, stickers and other artworks of their design.

Learn more

Authors on Art: Lawrence Hill

8 September 2019

Join us for our Authors on Art series with acclaimed writer Lawrence Hill. Held alongside Material Tells, an exhibition that looks at how cultural narratives are embedded in the materials artists use, Oakville Galleries has invited Hill to discuss his work as a writer.

Learn more

ARTbus: Exhibition Tour

23 June 2019

Ride the ARTbus and discover some of the season's best exhibitions in the GTA! Visit the Art Museum at the University of Toronto, the Art Gallery of Burlington and Oakville Galleries.

Learn more