The Textile Museum of Canada announces the sole Canadian presentation of “Artist Textiles: From Picasso to Warhol”

The Textile Museum of Canada – located in Toronto – is pleased to debut “Artist Textiles: From Picasso to Warhol,” running from May 2 to Oct. 4. This major summer exhibition offers a fascinating overview of textile design by some of the world’s most celebrated artists – including Pablo Picasso, Salvador Dali, Sonia Delaunay, Henri Matisse, Henry Moore, Andy Warhol and Alexander Calder.

With over 200 printed works on fabric, fashion and accessories – many on public display for the first time – “Artist Textiles” represents art movements such as Fauvism, Cubism, Constructivism, Modernism, Surrealism and Pop Art, as well as the work of leading fashion designers and textile manufacturers.

Highlighting the artists’ use of textiles as a medium for combining art and mass production, the exhibition shines new light on creative practice across the 20th century in Europe and North America.

Says TMC executive director Shauna McCabe, “’Artist Textiles’ tells us so much about the breadth of artists’ intention and imagination, even for those we think we know quite well. That names such as Picasso, Matisse and Warhol produced such sophisticated, commercially viable designs for use in everyday life suggests that their professional worlds were much more varied than one might expect. Clearly, the intersection of art and design has consistently engaged artists – modern to conceptual to contemporary.”

This major exhibition of works on fabric by leading artists begins in the 1910s with designs by English painter Wyndham Lewis, although it was Fauvist painter Raoul Dufy who became the first 20th-century artist to become seriously and successfully involved in producing textile designs. It was after the Second World War that artist textiles would flourish, produced by a new wave of leading artists with conceptual and Pop sensibilities.

In 1950s New York, Fuller Fabrics worked with Picasso – along with Joan Miró, Fernand Léger and Marc Chagall – to produce affordable “art by the yard.” This post-war enthusiasm provided the perfect conditions the following decade for the thriving design culture of 1960s London with personalities such as British textile designer, fashion icon and artist Zandra Rhodes, also known as the “Princess of Punk.”

“Artist Textiles: From Picasso to Warhol” is circulated by the Fashion and Textile Museum, London, U.K., and is on view at the TMC May 2 – Oct. 4. The Textile Museum of Canada is located in downtown Toronto (55 Centre Ave.) and is open daily 11 a.m.-5 p.m., Wed. 11 a.m.-8 p.m.

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