Home » Underrated Canadian artist: Sorel Etrog

Underrated Canadian artist: Sorel Etrog

Canadian sculptor and painter Sorel Etrog was born in Romania in 1933, studied in Tel Aviv and moved to Toronto in 1963 from New York, where he had been at the Brooklyn Museum of Art on scholarship.

Sorel Etrog, The Hand, 1972. Image: flickr.com

In 1959, Etrog had his first Canadian solo exhibition at Gallery Moos and shortly thereafter, having become a Canadian citizen, represented Canada at the Venice Biennale in 1966.

The sculptor Sorel Etrog. Image: flickr.com

Sorel Etrog’s work has been exhibited extensively in solo and group exhibitions including at Marlborough Gallery, New York; the Centre Culturel Canadien, Paris; and the Singapore Art Museum, Singapore.

His work has been part of group exhibitions at the National Gallery of Canada; The Carnegie International, Pittsburg; The Museum of Modern Art, New York, The Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum, New York; the Hirshhorn Museum and Sculpture garden, Washington, D.C.; Palazzo Vecchio, Florence; Musee des Beaux-Arts, Le Havre; Musee Rodin, Paris; Kuntsmuseum, Basel; and the Centre Georges Pompidou, Paris.

Sorel Etrog, Sunlife (downtown Toronto), 1984. Image: flickr.com

Sorel Etrog has received several important commissions, including those for Expo ’67 and designed Canada’s film award, the Genie.

Canada’s Genie award. Image: filmfestivalworld.com

He was appointed member of the Order of Canada in 1994 and was made a Chevalier of Arts and Letters by the Government of France in 1996.

Sorel Etrog, La Fénice, 1965-1967. Image: gallerymoos.com

Sorel Etrog is also well known for his writings and published plays, poetry and non-fiction. Of his many collaborations, the most acclaimed are his book illustrations for Samuel Beckett in the late 1960s. Sorel Etrog and Marshall McLuhan collaborated on the publication Spiral that was drawn from Etrog’s film of the same title, which was broadcast in CBC television in 1975.

Sorel Etrog, The King and Queen. Image: citywindsor.ca

Etrog is represented by Buschlen Mowatt Gallery, Vancouver – click HERE for gallery website.

2 Responses to “Underrated Canadian artist: Sorel Etrog”

  1. Right on VoCA
    We Canadians have a long terrible record of ignoring this kind of accomplishment. Yes, it is important to encourage young artists (RBC, BMO, etc) but let’s not ignore those who have continued to produce, explore and thrive as artists, even if out of the limelight.

  2. Emile Simon says:

    The Canadian composer/song writer and wife June Simon have twice received international awards,
    first place out of seven hundred thousand entries in the cathegory of “World Music”. June Simon has appeared abroad with her taped shows in Arizona, Hawaii and San Francisco to millions of people- yet any approach to the CBC or any of their affiliated stations wouldn’t even mention nor talk about her performances.
    Just type in her name on the internet and you can hear and observe her artistry. I see that our sculptors on your page are remarkably outstanding…they share the same fate…June Simon has promoted Canada equally as well without any help or assistance from our government..never burdended the state with hand- outs. The American public has a very receptive attitude
    towards their artists.. The artists who I see here represented on your site are unbelievably talented…
    I pray that they find a market for their efforts..June has
    patience but cannot understand as to why the Canadian
    public is kept away from her, simply attempting to seek fairness of exposure.
    Emile Simon

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