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 Michael James Aleck Snow  (1929 - )

About: Michael James Aleck Snow
 

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Lived/Active: New York/Ontario / Canada      Known for: minimal abstract painting, photo montage, video

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This biography from the Archives of AskART:
The following biographical information, submitted August 2006, is from the artist, who was born in Toronto, Canada in 1929.
        
Michael Snow works in many mediums: painting, sculpture, video, films, photography, holography, drawing, books and music.

BIOGRAPHY
Michael Snow

This artist works in many artistic disciplines: painting, sculpture, video, films, photography, holography, drawing, books and music. 

In 2004, the Université de Paris I, Panthéon-Sorbonne awarded him an honorary doctorate.  The last previous artist so awarded was Pablo Picasso.

Snow’s works are exhibited regularly in museums and galleries, particularly in Paris, Brussels, Berlin, Montreal, Toronto and New York. His works were included in the shows marking the reopening of both the Centre Pompidou in Paris in 2000 and the MoMA in New York in 2005. In March 2006 his works were included in the Whitney Biennial. 

In his 2002 Village Voice review of *Corpus Callosum, J. Hoberman wrote “Rigorously predicated on irreducible cinematic facts, Snow's structuralist epics—Wavelength and La Région Centrale—announced the imminent passing of the film era. Rich with new possibilities, *Corpus Callosum heralds the advent of the next. Whatever it is, it cannot be too highly praised.” *Corpus Calossum was screened at the Toronto, Berlin, Rotterdam, and the Los Angeles film festivals amongst others. I

In January 2003, Snow won the Los Angeles Film Critics Association, Douglas Edwards Independent Experimental Film/Video Award for *Corpus Callosum.  His numerous films have premiered in major film festivals all over the world.  Five of his films have premiered at the Toronto International Film Festival (TIFF). In 2000, TIFF commissioned Snow with Atom Egoyan and David Cronenburg to make short films, Preludes, for the 25th Anniversary of the Toronto International Film Festival. 

His public art works include the iconic geese, Flight Stop, at the Eaton Centre and The Audience at the SkyDome/Rogers Centre, both in Toronto. His works have been in virtually every Canadian pavilion at every world fair since his Walking Women sculpture was in Expo 67 in Montreal. 

In 1993 The Michael Snow Project was a many month, multi-venue major retrospective of Snow’s works in Toronto including public venues and at the Art Gallery of Ontario and The Power Plant. Concurrently his works were the subjects of four books published by Alfred A. Knopf Canada.

Walking women are the subject of his most recent book work BIOGRAPHIE of the Walking Woman / de la femme qui marche 1961-1967 (2004), published in Brussels by La Lettre vole. It is all images of public appearances of his famous icon.

Anarchive2: Digital Snow describes Michael Snow as “one of the most significant artists in contemporary art and cinema of the past 50 years.”  This 2002 DVD was initiated by Paris’ Centre Pompidou and produced with the support of la foundation Daniel Langlois, Université Paris, Heritage Canada, the Canada Council, Téléfilm Canada and Montreal’s Époxy.  It is an encyclopaedia of his works in many media, browsed in a manner inimitably and artfully created by Snow. Its 4,685 entries include film clips, sculpture, photographs, audio and musical clips, and interviews.

He is both a jazz pianist and an experimental musician. He performs regularly in Canada and abroad, often with CCMC, the improvisational music ensemble with which he has performed for more than a decade and with which he has released more than a half dozen albums. 

EXHIBITIONS: Current and Upcoming
    A solo exhibition of Snow’s installation works will be presented at MALI (Art Museum of Lima) in Peru, opening June 2006.  His work appears in Ethnic Marketing, an international exhibition at the Tehran Museum of Contemporary Art, also opening June 2006.
    Sculpture and video by Snow will be in Palindromes at the Biennale d’art contemporain du Havre, France, opening June 2006, continuing to September 2006 (curated by Claude Gosselin). In May 2006, he will present a film program and solo piano concert at Xcèntric, Centro de Cultura Contemporània de Barcelona.
    Snow’s i new moving-image work titled The Window Suite (formerly known as Exposures) will be installed on the façade of the Pantages hotel/condominium complex in downtown Toronto in spring 2006.  His proposal for the site was selected in a competition of June 2003, and has been in production since that date.
    At the Whitney Biennial, opening 2 March 2006 (until May) in New York, Snow shows three works: the films SSHTOORTTY, WVLNT… and video installation SHEEPLOOP.
    The group exhibition Raconte-moi/Tell me will open in September 2006 at the Forum d’art contemporain in Luxembourg

EXHIBITIONS Just completed:
    Snow’s projection work Solar Breath (Northern Caryatids) was presented along with a selection of his films by Lumen/Evolution, in a week-long presentation of international experimental cinema in Leeds, UK in April 2006.
    His three-screen video installation That/Cela/Dat was included in the international group exhibition Smile Machines, curated by Anne-Marie Duguet, part of Transmediale.06 presented at the Akademie der Künste, Berlin, in February-March 2006.
    October Magazine, issue 114 (fall 2005) features three separate articles on Snow’s work, and an interview with Annette Michelson.
    SSHTOORTY was screened at Berlinale, the Berlin Film Festival, February 2006.
    Snow was visiting artist/lecturer at the Ecole Cantonale d’Art du Valais in Sierre, Switzerland, January 2006
    His video Sheeploop is projected in the Paris metro (Madeleine) during January 2006.
    Snow showed projection works and prints in a two-person exhibition with Sam Taylor-Wood at the Museum of Modern Art in New York September, October and November 2005.
Simultaneously the MOMA cinema showed a retrospective of Snow films.
He lectured at MOMA on October 5, 2005 in a new series of "media" lectures.
Snow was a visiting artist/lecturer at the Rhode Island School of Design in November 2005.
    Curated by Martha Langford for the Galerie de l’UQAM and Mois de la Photo, an exhibition of Snow’s work concentrating on Windows and Framing ran the months of September and October 2005 in Montreal.
    Projection works were in a major group exhibition Raconte-moi/Tell me October and November 2005 at The Musée des Beaux Arts, Quebec City.
Snow’s most recent film SSHTOORRTY had its Toronto premiere at the Toronto International Film Festival, Sept 13, 2005.

RECENT ACTIVITIES
     Snow was included in the important exhibition LisboaPhoto at Centro Cultural de Belem in Lisbon, Portugal (May 2005), in the section "Etats d'Images", co-curated by Raymond Bellour and Sérgio Mah.
    Invited to the Getty Foundation (Los Angeles) in April 2005, Snow was part of Filmmakers/Musicians with Tony Conrad for film screenings and a solo piano concert. His films were also screened at UCLA and Film Forum.
   Snow’s projection work Solar Breath…. Was in an international group exhibition curated by Raymond Bellour in Lisbon, Portugal in April/May 2005
     He was a visiting artist/professor at L’Ecole nationale supérieure d’art de Bourges, France, in December 2004 and May 2005. For May, he also presented two exhibitions: Hearing Aid at La Box, and Hue, Chroma, Tint at Transpalette, plus a solo piano concert
     In March 2005 Snow presented an evening of projections and music entitled Hue, Chroma, Tint at Daniel Langlois’ club 357c in Montreal.
     Further, his 1969/1970 slide-carrousel work, Sink, was in Small: The Object in Film, Video and Slide Installations at the Whitney Museum, New York (18 November 2004 – 6 March 2005). His recently-completed two-screen collaboration with Toronto filmmaker Carl Brown, Triage, was shown 22 November 2005 at the Museum of Modern Art, New York, as part of the renovated MoMA’s opening exhibitions, and again in December.
     Snow had three works in Timelength at Galerie Leonard et Bina Ellen, Concordia University (Montreal) 10 November – 22 December 2004.
    Works by Snow were included in a many-media group exhibition called Régarder, observer, surveiller, at Galerie Séquence, Chicoutimi, Quebec, August-September 2004.
    Photo-works were presented at PhotoEspana, Madrid, Spain, June-August 2004. 
    Kino Arsenal in Berlin presented a four-week retrospective of Snow’s film works, along with several video installation pieces, in June 2004. He presented a solo piano concert on a program with the performance of his recently-composed Hue, Chroma, Tint, for classical quartet, at the Hamburger Bahnhof. He also signed copies of his recently-published all-image bookwork BIOGRAPHIE, at Galerie/Verlag Barbara Wien.
    An honourary degree was conferred on Snow by Emily Carr Institute of Art and Design, Vancouver, on 8 May 2004.
    On 15 March 2004 Snow received an honorary doctorate (docteur honoris causa) at l’Université de Paris 1, Panthéon-Sorbonne.
    In March 2004, Snow co-exhibited (film retrospective plus photographic work) with Heinz Emigholz at Goethe-Institut Toronto. 
    During 2003-2004 Snow’s work was part of the touring exhibition Sound Tracks at Edmonton, Toronto, and Regina Saskatchewan in Canada.  At both Edmonton and Regina Snow also played a solo piano concert.
    A thirty-minute two-screen collaboration with Toronto filmmaker Carl Brown, titled Triage, had its world premiere at Goethe -Institut in Toronto, 22 April 2004.
    During February-June 2004, Snow’s Two Sides to Every Story was included in X-Screen. Filmische Installationen und Aktionen der 60er und 70er Jahre at MUMOK (Museum Moderner Kunst Stiftung Ludwig Wien), Vienna.
    New photoworks were presented in an exhibition titled Powers of Two at Jack Shainman Gallery in New York (Feb-March 2004), where Snow’s new all-image book BIOGRAPHIE of the Walking Woman / de la femme qui marche 1961-1967 (2004), published in Brussels by La Lettre volée, was also launched. Additional launches for BIOGRAPHIE were held in Toronto and Brussels in March 2004.




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