Walking Onto an Art Stage

Photography by Craig Boyko

Imagine a canvas coming to life, the subject matter stepping off the surface and onto a stage. That’s what visitors will have in store upon viewing the Art Gallery of Ontario’s Drama & Desire exhibit, an interactive display that examines the relationship between art and theatre. The viewer will walk onto a magical stage set with more than 100 paintings and drawings by such artists as Degas, Delacroix, David, Ingres, Blake, Beardsley, Toulouse-Lautrec and Vuillard to name a few. It’s a journey through history where the artists’ subjects evoke emotion and are rooted in real life, starting with the French Revolution and ending just prior to the First World War. This exhibit is truly like no other, a unique experience activating your senses with enhanced sound, live and recorded performers, video intermingled with various stage props — all among these beautiful paintings.

With this being the only North American stop, this is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity — many of these paintings are on loan from New York’s Metropolitan Museum of Art, the Louvre and the Musée d’Orsay in Paris, and the British and Victoria and Albert museums. The exhibit is on from June 19 to Sept. 26. Visit www.ago.net for further information or call 416-979-6648.

–Barbara Glaser