Our next Artist You Need To Know is someone who is well represented in this region, but he also represented Canada with an outdoor installation Compromiso Viriditas at a Biennale in Caracas, Venezuela, in 1992. A visit to Brock University in nearby St. Catharines will allow you to experience his work 2000 Years on the Edge, and his recent artist residency at the Art Gallery of Hamilton was both amusing and challenging. His work in a three person exhibition at Rodman Hall Art Centre in 2017, in some ways, perfectly encapsulates his aesthetic and approach to art making.
Reinhard Reitzenstein‘s work ‘has consistently taken him into processes and practices exploring ways to unite and interconnect nature, culture, and technology. He works in several parallel areas: indoor installation and sculpture using cast, spun and welded metals, wood, glass, photography and other materials; large scale drawings, often of microscopic biological structures; large installations (often outdoors) using whole trees, cut, and/or mounted, and/or coated with beeswax; and sound art, largely in collaboration with composers Gayle Young and David Keane.’ (from the CCCA Canadian Art Database, a fine resource to see more of his works, and explore other contemporary Canadian artists).
Reitzenstein’s own site offers a diverse and extensive ‘cartography’ of his works. But if you’ve had the opportunity to interact with his residency project at AGH, or in the presence of his very physical – one might say ‘natural’, as they are about environments and our roles, implicit or imagined, within them – works, you can see this is just a teaser towards standing in the presence of his practice.
Large scale installations include World Tree at the Confederation Centre of the Arts in Charlottetown, P.E.I., Western Pergola, for Western University at the McIntosh Gallery (1993). Sound Lodge, a collaborative (with David Keane) sound sculpture has been installed at the Nickel Arts Museum in Calgary, and abroad in the Netherlands and Denmark.
As indicated earlier, Reitzenstein has a strong Niagara presence: but he’s also exhibited internationally. He’s been a guest artist at the University of Maine, shown at the Museum of Contemporary Art, in Santiago, Chile and The Museum of Contemporary Art in Caracas, Venezuela. Canadian galleries that have facilitated his installations, both in their spaces and in the public sphere, include the Mendel Art Gallery (now the Remai Modern ), Kenderdine/College Art Galleries at the University of Saskatchewan, and the MacDonald Stewart Art Centre (Guelph, ON).
Reinhard’s works are included in numerous corporate and public collections: National Gallery of Canada, AGO – Art Gallery of Ontario, Canada Council Art Bank / Banque d’art du Conseil des arts du Canada, the Art Gallery of Hamilton, Art Gallery of Algoma, University of Toronto, Memorial University of Newfoundland and the Province of Ontario. He’s represented by Olga Korper Gallery in Toronto.
Reitzenstein has taught sculpture and interdisciplinary studies at the University of Guelph and Brock University. Currently, he’s Head of the Sculpture Program and Director of the Undergraduate Program at UB Department of Art.
This is just a smattering of images highlighting his practice and we encourage you to visit his site – here – to see more. Here is also a link to an Art Gallery of Hamilton video about his recent residency at the gallery.