A postcard image featuring Mount Fuji, one of many from the collection that makes up the Ascent installation by Fiona Tan, on now at the Art Gallery of Greater Victoria.

At the AGGV: Ascent takes you to breathtaking heights

Art Gallery of Greater Victoria features Fiona Tan collection along with related upcoming exhibits

Climb Mount Fuji, courtesy of Fiona Tan and the Art Gallery of Greater Victoria.

Internationally acclaimed artist Tan’s installation, Ascent, on now through June 16 in the AGGV;’s Founders and Drury galleries, highlights the Japanese mountain as its central motif.

The exhibit is in two parts; a 77-minute video, and the 151 photographs used in the film. It is a study of the mountain’s visual culture, and a tribute to the history of both photography and film, referring also to the tradition of woodblock printmaking, which first made the image of Mt. Fuji iconic.

Aerial image from the Second World War shows a warplane flying above Mount Fuji in Japan. The photo is part of the collection entitled Ascent by Fiona Tan, on display now at the Art Gallery of Greater Victoria. Courtesy AGGV

Tan, who lives and works in Amsterdam, selected the images from the collection of the Izu Photo Museum at the base of Mt. Fuji, and from photos submitted by the public.

“In Ascent,” says Gallery curator Haema Sivanesan, “the artist explores the relationship between people and the mountain, exploring variously its character as a sacred mountain, as a “famous place” (meisho), and as a landmark to be climbed and conquered.”

Organized in conjunction with upcoming exhibitions, Landscapes of Edo: Ukiyo-e prints from the AGGV Collection, and Quiet Nature: The Woodblock Prints of Walter J. Phillips, Ascent conveys the enduring significance of the landscape in Japanese culture.

Ascent will also be featured at the AGGV’s by-donation public open house day on March 9. For more on this or other exhibits, visit aggv.ca.



editor@mondaymag.com

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