Emily Carr Statue in Victoria



Emily Carr: Seeing + Being Seen (Exhibition Tour)

Emily Carr’s legacy is very much intertwined with the land and sites of the West Coast. She is celebrated for the way in which she articulated what she saw in these landscapes through painting and for how she interpreted and portrayed Indigenous village sites, landmarks, and culture.

The exhibition, Emily Carr: Seeing and Being Seen, is split into two sections. Half the gallery shows how she documented what was around her, highlighting many of the works she is admired for today. The other half focuses on how artists and historians of various backgrounds continue to interpret her legacy and body of work.

The section called Seeing displays 13 works by Carr focusing on bringing a more fulsome narrative to the intersection of land and cultures that Carr was documenting through her work. Not only showing what Carr recorded through her paintings at these sites, but also what other stories and lived experiences exist there.

Being Seen examines works by other artists impacted by Carr’s legacy. Artists who admire her work, historians who adore her, and works that hold her accountable and critique her engagement with Indigenous peoples. Showcased in this section are artists such as: Edythe Hembroff-Schleicher, Pat Martin Bates, Jack Shadbolt, Isabel Hobbs, and Joan Cardinal-Schubert offering many varied perspectives to engage with. Schubert’s work titled Birch Bark Letters to Emily Carr: Astrolobe Discovery depicts letters written to, and imagined conversations between Carr and the artist of Kainaiwa ancestry. All of these people see Carr through their own unique vantage point, and contribute to the ongoing discussion about what her work and legacy represent. The lens through which artists are seen by others shapes their legacy throughout their lives and after they are gone, and Emily Carr is no exception.

The Art Gallery of Greater Victoria is located on the traditional territory of the lək̓ʷəŋən speaking peoples, today known as the Esquimalt and Songhees Nations. We extend our gratitude and appreciation for the opportunity to live and work on this territory.

Videography and editing by Marina DiMaio.

This post is also available in: Español

Skip to content