Art Collection News

What's New with the Art Collection!

Mark Clintberg Solo Exhibition

September 4, 2015: Keep your eyes on the roof of Bata Library in October! A press release issued by Peterborough's Artspace today describes an upcoming exhibition which involves Trent University.

The Trent University Art Collection at 50 YearsJuly 31, 2015: The most recent issue of Archives News highlights the 50-year history of the Trent University Art Collection. Scroll to #54 on the ARCHIVES NEWS list of issues.

Anishinaabe Art Tour

May 8, 2015: A self-guided walking tour exhibit, curated by Jonathon Lockyer, director of Artspace and Trent alumnus, was recently launched at Trent University. Focused on Trent's Indigenous art, the exhibit is titled "On the Shores of Odoonabii-Ziibi: Anishinaabe Art from the Trent University Art Collection."

Trent's Indigenous Art to be showcased at Doors Open PeterboroughApril 30, 2015: Guided tours showcasing Trent’s Indigenous art are a feature of this year’s Doors Open Peterborough event. On May 2nd, visitors will have a unique opportunity to experience the many Indigenous works through tours conducted by exhibit curator and Trent alumnus Jon Lockyer, Director of Artspace. The 60-minute tours begin at 11:00 a.m. and 1:00 p.m. on the Symons Campus, starting in Bata Library with prints of five works by noted artist Norval Morrisseau and concluding across the Otonabee River in the First Peoples House of Learning. Titled “On the Shores of Odoonabii-ziibi: Anishinaabe Art from the Trent University Art Collection”, this exhibit highlights more than 20 artworks representing 50 years of contemporary Anishinaabe artistic traditions.
(Photo: Prints of works by Norval Morrisseau, Bata Library)

Inventory Follow-up ProjectSeptember 2014: We are fortunate again this year to have a TWSP student assistant working with us on the Art Collection. Jennifer Wallace, a 4th year student majoring in History, is following up on tasks generated from an art inventory project conducted last year. In consultation with the Trent Art Collection Presidential Advisory Committee, Jennifer will assist in making arrangements for professional rematting, reframing, and conservation treatment of artworks identified as needing attention. As the Art Collection is located in many areas throughout the University, you're likely to see Jennifer on her travels!

New Pedestal for Margaret Laurence Sculpture

January 2014:

Visitors to the Bata Library will notice the new black pedestal which has recently been installed to support the Margaret Laurence bust by artist Almuth Lutkenhaus. The work has been positioned permanently in front of an interior rubble aggregate wall (a feature of the Ron Thom architecture) and is centred between two new black benches. Aesthetically, this works well and the appearance of this cultural property-designated piece has been enhanced by these changes.

Art Collection Inventory to be ConductedSeptember 20, 2013: Student Rachel Hann is conducting an inventory of the University art collection during this current academic year. The project will entail locating all works of art (approximately 600 pieces) across the University campuses and providing updates on their condition, location, and security. An inventory at this time in the University’s history is timely and will help to facilitate control of the assets and ensure their safety into perpetuity. The art is dispersed across all campuses and located in offices, hallways, lecture halls, common areas, cafeterias, and on the grounds. We welcome Rachel, a student in Trent's School of Education and Professional Learning, to our staff!

New Art Collection Web SiteAugust 20, 2013. Sincere thanks to Librarian Gord Ripley for his assistance in transferring our web pages to the new site!

Two Sculptures by David James Unveiled during Head of the Trent Weekend

October 1, 2012. Two sculptures named "Portal" were unveiled on September 29th, 2012 at Trent University. One of these, comprised of kiln cast crystal, is located at Bata Library. This work is a companion piece to an 8000 pound granite sculpture located on the east bank of the Symons Campus. These works were created by artist and Trent Alumnus David James '68. To see images of the two pieces, please see Portal (2011.009.1) and Portal (2011.010.1). To see a Slide Show about the creation, development, transportation, installation, and unveiling of "Portal," click here.

Sculptures of Cultural Significance Donated to Trent

January 6, 2012. On a cold and windy afternoon in late December, an 8000 pound granite sculpture was installed at Trent University. Created by artist and alumnus David James, the sculpture "Portal" is comprised of Belfast black granite from South Africa and is approximately six feet tall and seven feet wide. Located on the slope between Peter Gzowski College and the Chemical Sciences Building, the work overlooks the nearby Warren Garden and is visible to passersby on the River Road and from the Faryon Bridge which crosses over the Otonabee River. Designated cultural property by Canadian Heritage, the massive piece is a cherished new acquisition. A smaller accompanying red glass sculpture by the same name "Portal" was also donated by the artist and will be installed during the spring inside the Bata Library. David James is internationally recognized and is an award-winning artist whose studio is located in Sutton, Quebec. 

"Trent University gratefully acknowledges the generous support of local community businesses such as Geo-Logic Incorporated, who helped prepare the site; Royden Moran, who contributed architectural design for the base; Drain Brothers for construction of the base, excavation and gravel; Dan Sims Concrete for the form and concrete; Doughty Aggregates for transportation from Bloomfield to Peterborough; Pete's Crane in Belleville and Redpath Crane Services in Peterborough for lifting Portal and putting it in place."

(extract from a Trent University news release, December 20, 2011)

P.K. Page Irwin

February 12, 2010: Trent University has recently received a large donation of art created by the poet and artist, P.K. (Patricia Kathleen) Page Irwin (1916-2010). The works are located at Traill College. Click HERE to see images and descriptions of the many works.

New On-Line Walking Tour Brochure

February 27, 2009: Trent University has been acquiring works of art since 1963. Currently, there are approximately 500 pieces in the Trent University Art Collection (TUAC). These works, done in a variety of media, are by local, national and international artists. Many of the works reflect the culture, history, environment and academic mission of Trent. Contemporary Aboriginal art and historic Canadian art are particularly well represented at Trent University. The TUAC does not exist in a gallery, but rather in public space. This is intentional! By integrating the TUAC into the living environment at Trent, people are able to have daily encounters with the collection. The vast majority of the collection is permanently exhibited.

Check out the new TUAC On-line Walking Tour Brochure. We hope you enjoy these selected works from the collection!

Tapestry Relocated to Wenjack Theatre

January 10, 2008: The "Otonabee River" tapestry by artist Friedel was relocated to Wenjack Theatre in mid-December. Few walls in the university could accommodate the large 36 foot tapestry! It was originally created for Otonabee College's former Senior Common Room in 1974-75 by artist-in-residence Friedel. It also hung for a period at OC's former Native Studies Lounge, but with renovations and the moving of departments, it became necessary to find a new home for it once again. Before being installed at Wenjack Theatre, "Otonabee River" was completely cleaned and conserved by a professional conservator over the summer and fall of 2007. A new large-print plaque will soon accompany the tapestry in its new location.

We wish to express our sincere appreciation to Trent's Physical Resources Department for taking on the complex job of hanging this massive multi-part 400 pound work of art in the Wenjack.

Heeney Banners Returned to Champlain College

January 10, 2008: The ten Heeney Banners created by artist Robert Murray were rehung this week in the Great Hall at Champlain College. The colours are vibrant after having been cleaned by a professional conservator. We're delighted that many people are commenting on them and expressing their pleasure at seeing them back in the Great Hall. We wish to thank Trent's Conference Services for covering the conservator's fee and to acknowledge our sincere appreciation of their support in this way. From January 11th to March 2nd the Art Gallery of Peterborough is holding an exhibition of their suite of abstract prints that are based on the original Banners here at Trent.

Brian Heeney was Champlain College's third Master and the Banners were created in his memory. According to a small pamphlet printed at the time of installation, the artist's design for the Banners reflects the "complex interaction of plan and angle central to Ron Thom's architectural vision."

Heeney Banners to be Cleaned

May 25, 2007: The Heeney Banners have temporarily been removed from the ceiling of The Great Hall in Champlain College for cleaning by a conservator. Created in 1986 by artist Robert Murray, the 10 hangings are being attended to while The Great Hall is refurbished and painted this spring.

Brian Heeney was Champlain College's third Master and the Banners were created in his memory. According to a small pamphlet printed at the time of installation, the artist's design for the Banners reflects the "complex interaction of plan and angle central to Ron Thom's architectural vision."

New Decorative Arts Database Launched!

March 11th, 2005: When Trent University first opened in 1964, it was a designer's dream. Ron Thom, the Master Planning Architect, was not only responsible for the design of the award-winning buildings, but for choosing the furnishings as well. These included designer furniture, light fixtures, cutlery, and even ashtrays. The furniture was created by some of the greatest international artists of the time. In the early days, it was normal to find oneself sitting comfortably in a chair designed by Charles Eames, Arne Jacobsen, or even Ron Thom, himself. Through time, the years of use took its toll on much of the furniture, and many items have been replaced.

Julia Harrison, chair of TACPAC, recruited Martina Plejic, a fourth year student, to take on the task of creating an inventory of the decorative arts at the University. Martina's goal is to create a list detailing the number of chairs, tables, and light fixtures originally chosen by Ron Thom that still remain at Trent, along with their locations, and where possible, to include a photo of each. Newer acquisitions that are important in some way will be also included in the inventory.

The hope is that this project will raise awareness about the decorative treasures still to be found Trent University.

New Web Site for the Trent Art Collection

Nov. 10, 2002: Trent University has an impressive art collection including over 400 works. The entire collection is hung in public spaces at Trent so everyone can enjoy it. This new website is only one of several exciting developments in the collection in recent months. Jodi Aoki is now working as the Secretary to the Trent Art Collection Presidential Advisory Committee (TAPAC), coordinating the ongoing management of the collection. Veronica Hollinger, Lynne Davis, Katie Brown (from the Trent Foundation) and Julia Harrison (as Chair) are members of TAPAC which advises the President on matters concerning the art collection. TAPAC is working on a revised policy for managing the collection which will soon be presented to PEG, and in due course to Senate and Faculty Board. The text of the policy will be available on this website. Two students are doing research on works in the collection through the Trent Centre for Community Based Education. Summer employees have in recent years completed an inventory of the collection, improved the collection's conservation standards, produced a campus walking tour of the collection and pulled together the documentation on the history of the collection. It is the goal of TAPAC and this website to increase the awareness, appreciation and knowledge of the collection by the Trent community and those beyond. Have a look at the website...see what we have.