Canada’s outstanding arts and culture

Beyond their incredible permanent collections, Canada’s top museums and art galleries are featuring some fascinating exhibitions this fall and winter. From Haitian Vodou to French Impressionist paintings, here are a few great reasons to head indoors on a cool day.

Vodou exhibition, Canadian Museum of Civilization, Hull, QC, Nov. 15, 2012 to Feb. 23, 2014: Forget Hollywood zombies and sensational myths and let real Vodou practioners from Canada’s Haitian community share their spiritual traditions featuring 300 rare artifacts from one of the world’s most important collections. You’ll come away transformed.

Frida & Diego: Passion, Politics and Painting, Art Gallery of Ontario, Toronto, ON, Oct. 20, 2012 to Jan. 20, 2013: In the midst of revolutionary change, Mexico’s most famous artists created surreal and modern paintings mixing the personal and political. See the passions of Frida Kahlo and Diego Rivera explode on canvas with 75 paintings and works on paper.

Nature Unleashed: Inside Natural Disasters,Canadian Museum of Nature, Ottawa, ON, on now until May 5, 2013: Humbling and sometimes horrific, natural disasters change the way we understand the world, and each other. From earthquakes and volcanoes to hurricanes and tornadoes, see how nature’s forces have shaped the planet and our ideas of power.

Fairy Tales, Monsters and the Genetic Imagination, Glenbow Museum, Calgary, AB, until Jan. 2, 2013: Contemporary artists have more than monsters on their minds in an exhibition inspired by the fantastic stories and characters of myths, fairy tales and science fiction. See the grotesque and the good as these artists blur the lines between human and animal.

A History of Impressionism: Great French Paintings from the Clark, Montréal Museum of Fine Arts, Montréal, QC, until Jan. 20 2013: Tour the French countryside and gritty cities through the greatest collections of French Impressionism in North America. If you know your Monet from your Degas, and even if you don’t, this exhibit of 74 extraordinary paintings is for you. ‘Oooh’ and ‘ahhh’ before works by Toulouse-Lautrec, Renoir, Gauguin, Manet, Monet and more.

Shaping Canada: Exploring Our Cultural Landscapes, Canadian Museum of Immigration at Pier 21, Halifax, NS, until Nov. 18, 2012: You’re definitely part of the picture in an exhibition that examines the ways groups and individuals maintain and create their cultural identities in Canada. See contemporary portrait photography featuring fascinating folks like the Sikh motorcycle club, as well as archival images, oral histories, and artifacts.

Photo: Cat. 14
Claude Monet
Tulip Fields at Sassenheim, near Leiden
© The Sterling and Francine Clark Art Institute, Williamstown, Massachusetts, USA, 1955.615
Courtesy Montréal Museum of Fine Arts

Article courtesy of the Canadian Tourism Commission. The text has been modified from the original.