Our Children: Reflections of Childhood in Historical Canadian Art

On view April 13 - June 23, 2019

Harris - The Stethem Children

About the Exhibition

From staged commissioned portraits to lighthearted scenes of leisure, this exhibition explores the portrayal of children by Canadian artists in the nineteenth and early twentieth centuries. Collectively, these works offer insight into the changing conceptions of childhood within Canadian settler societies, including family dynamics, gender roles and class structures. The exhibition features many prominent artists from this broad period including Paul Kane, Cornelius Krieghoff, Robert Harris, George Agnew Reid and Charlotte Schreiber. Consequently, these works also speak to the development of a Canadian artistic milieu, evidenced by the establishment of artist associations, the Royal Canadian Academy and the increasing professionalisation of the artist.

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Image: Robert Harris, The Unruly Guest (Portraits of the Children of G. Stethem, Esq.), 1880, oil on canvas, 91.5 x 122 cm. Private Collection. Photo: Frank Tancredi.


Opening Reception

Sunday, April 14, 2019
2 to 4 PM
Free Admission

Join us to celebrate the opening of the Varley Art Gallery of Markham’s new exhibition, Our Children: Reflections of Childhood in Historical Canadian Art. The exhibition will be celebrated with live music, gallery tour, and light refreshments. Prior to the opening, join Ian Thom, notated art historian, for an insightful gallery talk and tour of Our Children. Limited space.


Pop-Up Tour

An engaging gallery tour of the new exhibition by Varley Art Gallery Staff.

pop-up tour

Live Music

Robert Lee is an emerging upright bassist, composer, and bandleader in the Toronto jazz scene. He has participated in the Spectrum Music New Voices Composers Residency and also been featured on Jazzology with Heather Bambrick on JazzFm91. He is joined by Felix Flores and Mo Mitchel on the violins to form a classical trio group performing works ranging from the Baroque to the Classical eras.

Live Concert with Robert Lee

Directions & Parking

Get directions to the Varley Art Gallery of Markham. Located on historic Main Street Unionville, north of Carlton Road.
Parking is available behind the Varley Art Gallery, with street parking along Carlton Road.

Hours of Operation

Monday (July to August): 11 AM to 4 PM
Tuesday, Wednesday & Friday: 11 AM to 4 PM
Thursday: 11 AM to 8 PM
Saturday: 10 AM to 5 PM
Sunday: 11 AM to 4 PM


905-477-7000 extension 3621

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