Monday, November 3, 2014

Therapy Session at the Art Gallery of Ontario

Matthew McDonald is one of Humber College’s four international student advisors. While he helps all of Humber’s international students, he takes special responsibility for helping Business School students at the North Campus. Read more about him and other recent additions to the Humber International Centre team here.

At the Humber International Centre, we try to plan events that our #HumberGlobal students will like. We know from experience that trips to major Canadian attractions such as the CN Tower and Niagara Falls are some of the most popular choices. Sometimes, however, it’s nice to try something different!

So, this September, we organized a trip to the Art Gallery of Ontario (AGO), hoping that at least five or ten art-loving students would join be downtown. I was delighted that a group of 30 students were able to take an evening away from school to benefit from the museum’s free Wednesday night admission.

The AGO is one of my favourite buildings in Toronto, because it looks great inside and out! I was thrilled to be able to share it with some of Toronto’s newest residents!

Inside the museum, to my delight, there was an exhibit curated by one of my favourite pop philosophers, Alain de Botton. I enjoyed the way his descriptions made each piece of art accessible to those of us without a background in fine art or offered new (and modern) readings of each piece of art. The exhibit, called Art as Therapy, treated five different themes (e.g., money). I also enjoyed the way museum-goers were encouraged to tweet about their #artastherapy experience.

The kids’ exhibit also had an opportunity for social media fun! #WeAreSocial! A number of us grown-up kids had fun taking pictures after the little kids were finished.

 Less playful but equally interactive was an ongoing photography competition, for which we museum-goers were able to view four international photographers’ work and then cast our vote. The winner will receive the $50,000 prize AIMIA | AGO Prize! This year’s four finalists were from Canada, Mozambique, the US, and Israel.

Of course, the AGO also has traditional art galleries focusing on everything from the Italian Renaissance to contemporary Canadian sculpture. From the global to the local, from the pensive to the playful, from the old to the new, the AGO has something for everyone.

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