Duane Linklater

Duane Linklater’s (b. 1976, Omaskêko Ininiwak from Moose Cree First Nation; lives/works: North Bay, Ontario) practice explores the physical and theoretical structures of the museum in relation to the current and historical conditions of Indigenous peoples, their objects, and approaches to materials. He articulates his explorations through sculpture, photography, film and video, installation, and text works. The artist draws attention to the typically ‘invisible’ gallery and museum materials, such as white-painted drywall and plywood, that structure art and anthropological presentations by playing with the materials and highlighting their role in producing value and knowledge. For instance, in his installation, From our hands (2016), Linklater removed the drywall from a wall in the gallery, exposing the metal stud framework, and then installing additional painted metal stud frames inside the gallery as sculptural material, and draping an animal fur over the resulting, art-historically laden monolith.

In 2011, Linklater initiated Wood Land School, a nomadic project that centres Indigenous forms and ideas in the institutional spaces that the school inhabits. In 2012, Linklater completed an MFA in Film and Video from the Milton Avery Graduate School of the Arts at Bard College, New York. Linklater was the 2016 recipient of the Canada Council for the Arts Victor Martyn Lynch-Staunton Award for Media Art, and the 2013 Sobey Art Award winner. In 2018, Linklater was awarded a public commission for the High Line, New York and the Don River Valley Park, Toronto in 2017. He has presented solo exhibitions at the Eli And Edythe Broad Art Museum, Michigan State University (2017); 80 WSE Gallery, New York, and Mercer Union, Toronto (2016); Utah Museum of Fine Arts, Salt Lake City (2015); and the Institute of Contemporary Art, Philadelphia (2015). Linklater has been featured in group exhibitions including at the Musée d’art contemporain de Montréal (2017); SeMa Biennale, Seoul, Korea (2016); Art Gallery of Ontario, Toronto (2015); Vancouver Art Gallery (2015); and Walter Phillips Gallery, Banff, as part of dOCUMENTA (13) (2012).