Skip to main content

Artists as Writers: Carr-Harris, Ian

Artist Biography

CARR-HARRIS, Ian Redford (1941 - )

Professor at OCAD University

Areas of Expertise
Installation Art, Sculpture, Art Writing

Biography

Ian Carr-Harris is an artist based in Toronto whose work has been exhibited nationally and internationally since 1971. Exhibitions include the Paris Biennale (1975), the Venice Biennale (1984), Documenta (1987), the Canadian Biennial at the National Gallery (1989), the Sydney Biennale (1990), the Montreal Biennale (1998) and Threshold at The Power Plant, Toronto (1998). Formerly represented by the Carmen Lamanna Gallery, Carr-Harris is now represented by the Susan Hobbs Gallery in Toronto. He has been Director of Library Services and Chair of the Experimental Arts & the Sculpture/Installation programs, as well as Acting Chair of the Criticism and Curatorial program at OCAD, where he continues to teach full time as an instructor in studio and theory. Carr-Harris's active publication schedule includes the writing of reviews and articles as well as catalogue essays. He was a founding board member of A Space (1971) and The Power Plant (1987), and has served on boards at Harbourfront and theArt Gallery of Ontario; he is currently on the board of The Power Plant once again.

Gallery Representation
Susan Hobbs Gallery, Toronto

Above biography & photo © 2012 OCAD University

Online Resources

Writing by Ian Carr-Harris

Please note that not all works are available through the OCADU library. To acquire one of these works through Interlibrary Loan or other means, please contact the library for assistance.

Ian Carr-Harris: Writing about his own art

"Ian Carr-Harris." Parachute 1.Oct-Dec (1975): p. 28-31. 4 ill.
An article on his interest in analyzing basic elements of ordinary structures & perceiving implications within context of art, how his work questions nature of art. He also analyzes "I am the Queen of England."

"An Approach to Criticism." Parachute 1 (1975).
Published photos of his artwork with article explaining his project(s).

"Ian Carr Harris." Personal image for social space. Toronto, 1980

Vestiges of Empire : Ten Artists from Ontario: Camden Arts Centre. London: The Gallery, 1984. Available at OCADU Library.
This publication includes artist statement written by Ian Carr-Harris.

How We See/What We Say. Toronto: Art Gallery at Harbourfront (The Power Plant), 1986. Available at OCADU Library.
Writing about exhibition curated by Ian Carr-Harris that includes full-length commentary and essay about the exhibition.

Luminous Sites: 10 Video Installations. Vancouver: Video Inn & Western Front, 1986. Available at OCADU Library.
A short piece by Ian about his artwork, specifically his "On TV" piece.

"Selected Statements." So, To Speak. Ed. Gilbert, J.P., Sylvie Gilbert and Lesley Johnston. Montréal: Artextes Editions, 1999. Available at OCADU Library.
Includes Carr-Harris quotes taken from multiple sources.

"Un ami du docteur Gachet : le peintre Ambroise Detrez (1811-1863)." Un ami du docteur Gachet : le peintre Ambroise Détrez (1811-1863). Valenciennes : Editions de l'aquarium agnostique, 1999. Available at OCADU Library.
A piece by Ian Carr-Harris in French introducing Ambroise Detrez in his own exhibition catalogue.

Governor General's Awards in Visual and Media Arts 2007. Ottawa: Canada Council, 2007.

Ian Carr-Harris: Writing about art

Articles and Letters

"Sex and Representation." Vanguard November (1984): p. 22-25.

Letters. Vanguard March (1985): p. 44-45.
An exchange of letters to the editor with Liz Magor regarding "Sex & Representation"

"Under the Gaze of Criticism." Artists/Critics: the YYZ Conference Papers. Toronto, 1985.

"Toronto, Art, and History." Toronto: A Play of History. Toronto: Power Plant, 1987. Available at OCADU Library.

Serious Art in Toronto: Tracing Cultural Imperatives. Canadian Art (04/1988). Available at OCADU Library.

Letters ("A Nationalist's Discourse?") Vanguard 18.4 (1989): p. 46.
A response letter.

"A History of Manners: Susan Schelle's Taste." Frame of Mind: Viewpoints on Photography in Contemporary Canadian Art. Banff: Walter Phillips Gallery, 1993. Available at OCADU Library.

"International News Supplement: Toronto." Contemporary January (2002). London, UK.

"International News Supplement: Toronto." Contemporary May (2002). London, UK.

"International News Supplement: Toronto." Contemporary March (2003). London, UK.

"Tracing Reading Writing." The Joan Carlisle-Irving Lectures, UBC (unpublished).

Governor General's Awards in Visual and Media Arts 2007. Ottawa: Canada Council, 2007

"Patronage or Subsidy: Government Funding of Canadian Artists." Artviews Summer (1985).
A position paper

Perfect Portfolio [videorecording] VHS. Toronto: Visual Arts Ontario, 1992.
This is a recording of a panel discussion introducing the basic concepts involved in effective portfolio presentation with: Ian Carr-Harris & others.

"14.1" in Decentre: Concerning Artist-Run Culture. Toronto: YYZBooks, 2008. 49-50. Available at OCADU Library.

"Figure: on the Artist Gordon Lebret" in Gordon Lebredt: nonworks, 1975-2008. Plug in Editions, 2011.
Includes Carr-Harris' essay about the artist.

 

Catalogue Essays

"Al McWilliams: Interview and Commentary." Al McWilliams. Lethbridge: Southern Alberta Art Gallery, 1989. Available at OCADU Library.
Preface, interview and commentary by Ian Carr-Harris.

"A Far Country: Viewing the Isaacs Gallery." Small Villages: The Isaacs Gallery in Toronto, 1956-1991. Hamilton: The Art Gallery of Hamilton, 1991.

"A History of Manners: Susan Schelle's Taste." Frame of Mind: Viewpoints on Photography in Contemporary Canadian Art. Banff: Walter Phillips Gallery, 1993. Available at OCADU Library.

"Supplementary Footnotes to Susan Schelle's 'A Question of Behaviour'." Susan Schelle: A Question of Behaviour. Toronto: The Power Plant, 1994. Available in OCADU's Library Vertical File Collection.

"Nineteen footnotes written on an airplane concerning Patricia Homonylo's Patti Darnell series." The Ceremonial Landscape. Ottawa: Gallery 101, 1996

"Staging Painting in the Work of Ulrike Nattermüller." Ulrike Nattermüller: Prospekt. Köln: Salon Verlag, 2000.

"Moments in the Work of Margarita Andreu." Margarita Andreu. Girona, Spain: Fundacío Espais d'Art Contemporáni, 2000.

"Visiting Artists' Exhibition." Sarah Nind: Mind Landscapes. Toronto: Open Studio Gallery, May 2001.

"Getting to Know Barbara." Barbara McGill Balfour: Offspring. Toronto: Open Studio Gallery, 2001.

"Un ami du docteur Gachet : le peintre Ambroise Detrez (1811-1863)." Un ami du docteur Gachet : le peintre Ambroise Détrez (1811-1863). Valenciennes : Editions de l'aquarium agnostique, 1999. Available at OCADU Library.
A piece by Ian Carr-Harris in French introducing Ambroise Detrez in his own exhibition catalogue.

Close Readers / Eyes Wide Set: The 2009 Graduating Exhibition of Lorna Bauer, OCAD Instructor Nicole Collins, David Court, Mimi Gellman, Irene Loughlin and Josh Thorpe. University of Toronto, MVS (Masters of Visual Studies) Programme in Studio Art.
These are catalogue texts by Ian Carr-Harris, as writer/curator for the 2009 MVS Exhibition.

Ian Carr-Harris: Exhibition, art gallery, and artist reviews

Reviews published in Artists Review

  • "Joseph Kossuth: Text/Context (Toronto) Part 1." Artists Review 2.6 (1978).
  • "Reinhard Reitzenstein." Artists Review 2.7 (1979).
  • "Vincent Tangredi." Artists Review 2.7 (1979).
  • "Mary Janitc." Artists Review 3.1 (1979).
  • All articles available through OCADU Library.


Reviews published in C Magazine

  • "From Here to Zero: Stephen Horne." C Magazine 1 (1983).
  • "Ironic Disguise: Al McWilliams at Cold City Gallery." C Magazine 16.December (1987).
  • "A Space." C Magazine 16.December (1987).
  • "Ransom Notes in the Mirror: Mark Gomes and the Amazing Fish." C Magazine 34.Summer (1992): p. 25-30. Available at OCADU Library.


Reviews published in Parachute

  • "John Greer." Parachute 29 (1982).
  • "Vincent Tangedi." Parachute 30 (1983).
  • "Philip Monk: Sentences on Art at the Rivoli." Parachute 30 (1983).
  • "A.R. Penck." Parachute 31 (1983).
  • "Janis Hoogstraten." Parachute 32 (1983).
  • "Nancy Johnson." Parachute 32 (1983).
  • "Reconstructions: David Moore / Susan Schelle." Parachute 34 (1984).
  • "New City of Sculpture." Parachute 37 (1984).


Reviews published in Vanguard

  • "Museums in the 80s: The London Regional and A Space." Vanguard March (1983). Co-written with Goldie Rans.
  • "Winging It: Noel Harding." Vanguard April (1984).
  • "Robert Bowers." Vanguard February/March (1986).
  • Letters. Vanguard April/May (1986). (exchange of letters to the editor with Robert Bowers.)
  • "Womens Work." Vanguard December (1987). Available at OCADU Library.
  • "Standing on the Mezzanine: Ewen, Wiitasalo, Monk and the AGO." Vanguard December/January (988/89): p. 10-15. Available at OCADU Library.


Reviews published in Canadian Art

  • "Angela Grauerholz: Fellow Traveller." Canadian Art Fall (1997). Available at OCADU Library.
  • "Bruce Grenville at S.L. Simpson and the Power Plant." Canadian Art Spring (1988).
  • "The Art of Travel: Janet Cardiff's Here and Robin Collyer's There."  Feature article in Canadian Art Fall (2001). Available at OCADU Library.

 

Reviews published in Contemporary

  • Max Dean and Cate Elwes." Contemporary 35.January (2002). London, UK.
  • "Feature: Dereck Revington's Luminous Veil, with Yvonne Lammerich." Contemporary Special Summer Issue June-Aug. (2002). London, UK.
  • "Profile: Torie Begg: the Art of the Apparent." Contemporary Special Summer Issue June-Aug. (2002). London, UK.
  • "Profiles: Kristan Horton." Contemporary 79 (2006): p. 66-67. Available at OCADU Library.


Articles and reviews in other publications

"John McEwen: Recent Work." Real Sculpture: John McEwen. Lethbridge: Southern Alberta Art Gallery, 1979.

"A History of Manners: Susan Schelle's Taste." Frame of Mind: Viewpoints on Photography in Contemporary Canadian Art. Banff: Walter Phillips Gallery, 1993. Available at OCADU Library.

"On Exploring the Unknown: Northern Encounters."  Siksi: the Nordic Art Review 12.3 (1997).

"Beauties: 1-5." Lola Fall (2001).
A survey of five artists to watch for.

"Johanna Householder." Caught in the Act: An Anthology of Performance Art by Canadian Women. Eds. Tanya Mars and Johanna Householder. Toronto: YYZ Books, 2004. 251-259. Available at OCADU Library.

"Figure: on the Artist Gordon Lebret" in Gordon Lebredt: nonworks, 1975-2008. Plug in Editions, 2011. Available at OCADU Library.
Includes Carr-Harris' essay about the artist.

Ian Carr-Harris: Interviews

"Liz Magor in discussion with Ian Carr-Harris." C Magazine 11.Summer (1986). Available online through OCADU Open Research.

"Al McWilliams: Interview and Commentary." Al McWilliams. Lethbridge: Southern Alberta Art Gallery, 1989. Available at OCADU Library.