Michael Snow - Biography

Exhibitions of the artist:

Michael Snow: Biographical Note

Michael Snow was born in Toronto in 1928, and lives there now - but has also lived in Montréal, Chicoutimi,
Winnipeg and New York.
He is a musician (piano and other instruments) who has performed solo as well as with various ensembles (most
often with CCMC of Toronto) in Canada, USA, Europe and Japan. He has been commissioned to compose music
by The Burdocks Ensemble and Eve Egoyan. Numerous recordings of his music have been released.
He is also a filmmaker whose films have been presented at festivals in Australia, Brazil, Canada, Finland, France,
Germany, Korea, Italy, Japan, Netherlands, Turkey, United Kingdom and USA, and are in the collections of
several film archives, including Anthology Film Archives in New York City, the Royal Belgian Film Archives,
Brussels, and the Oesterreichisches Film Museum, Vienna.
He has been a painter and sculptor, though since 1962, much of his gallery work has been photo-based or
holographic. Work in all these media is represented in private and public collections worldwide, including the
National Gallery of Canada, the Art Gallery of Ontario (Toronto), the Museum of Modern Art (New York),
Philadelphia Museum of Art, Museum Ludwig (Cologne and Vienna), Centre Georges-Pompidou (Paris), Tate
(London), and both the Musée des Beaux-Arts and Musée d'art contemporain in Montreal.
Since 1970 he has made video, film, slide and sound installations and bookworks such as Michael Snow/A Survey
(1970), Cover to Cover (1975), 56 Tree Poems (1999), and BIOGRAPHIE of the Walking Woman 1961-1967
(2004), as well as magazine works for Impulse (1975), Photo-Communiqué (1986), and C magazine (1993).
Retrospectives of his painting, sculpture, sound installations, photoworks and holography have been presented at
the Hara Museum (Tokyo), of his films at the Cinémathèque Française and Centre Georges-Pompidou (Paris),
Anthology Film Archives and Museum of Modern Art (New York) and L'Institut Lumière (Lyons) and of his work in
all media simultaneously in 1994 at the Power Plant and the Art Gallery of Ontario (Toronto). A retrospective of his
photoworks 1962-99 called Panoramique was presented at the Palais des Beaux Arts (Brussels), touring to Centre
national de la photographie (Paris) and MAMCO and Saint-Gervais (Geneva). Additional retrospective exhibitions
have been mounted at the Vancouver Art Gallery and the Musée d'art contemporain (Montreal). An overview of his
abstract sculptural work, Objects of Vision, appeared at the Art Gallery of Ontario in 2012. A major retrospective of
his photoworks, Michael Snow: Photo-Centric, opened at the Philadelphia Museum of Art in early 2014. In 2015,
La Virreina Centre de la Imatge in Barcelona presented Michael Snow. Sequences, a retrospective of his work in
all mediums.
Solo and group shows of his visual art works have been presented at museums and galleries in Amsterdam,
Atlanta, Barcelona, Berlin, Bonn, Boston, Brussels, Kassel, Kilkenny, Lima, Lisbon, Los Angeles, Lucerne, Lyons,
Minneapolis, Montreux, Munich, New York, Ottawa, Paris, Pittsburgh, Quebec City, Rotterdam, San Francisco,
Toronto and elsewhere.
Michael Snow has executed several public commissions, the best known being Flight Stop at Eaton Centre and
The Audience at Skydome (now Rogers Centre), both in Toronto. His The Windows Suite was opened in
September 2006 at the Pantages Hotel and Condominium complex on Victoria Street, Toronto and his Les
Lumieres opened on the façade of the Cinémathèque Québécoise in Montreal in September 2013. His latest
public commission, Lightline, on the exterior of Toronto’s St. Regis Residences was launched in 2016.
Snow has received numerous awards, including a Guggenheim Fellowship (1972) the Order of Canada (Officer,
1982; Companion, 2007), and the first Governor General’s Award in Visual and Media Arts (2000) for cinema.
Snow was made a Chevalier de l'ordre des arts et des lettres, France (1995), in 2004 he was awarded an
honorary doctorate by the Université de Paris I, Panthéon-Sorbonne. In 2011, he was awarded the Gershon
Iskowitz Prize.

Michael Snow: Selected Recent Activities

Michael Snow works in many mediums: painting, sculpture, video, films, photography, holography, drawing,
books and music.

Selected Exhibitions, Festivals, Concerts:

Sculpture Exhibition, Guggenheim, Bilbao, opening March 2018.
O Som da neve, Culturegest, Lisbon, opening February 2018.
Prophecy, composition commission from the Winnipeg Symphony Orchestra, January 2018 premiere.
Powers of Two Exhibition. Christopher Cutts Gallery, Toronto. January to February 2017.
Lightline, permanent public commission for the St. Regis Residences in Toronto, launched December 2016.
The Viewing of Six New Works. Butler Gallery, Kilkenny, Ireland. August to October 2016.
Video Fields et En Haut. Galerie Martine Aboucaya, Paris. March to April 2016.
Michael Snow Sequences. La Virreina, Barcelona. July to November 2015.
Night Flight. Scotiabank Nuit Blanche, Toronto, October 3rd 2015.
Video Fields. Angels Barcelona, May to September 2015.
Dasha Shenkman Lecture & Prize in Contemporary Art, University of Guelph, March 2015.
WYSIWYG: The Films of Michael Snow (A Retrospective). TIFF Lightbox, Toronto. January to December 2015.
Solo Piano and Trio (Snow, Onda, Licht) Concerts at the Sound Live Tokyo Festival – November 5 and 6 2014.
‘The Transformation of Landscape in Canada.’ Xi’an Art Museum, China, August to September 2014.
Solo exhibition: Michael Snow Photo-Centric, Philadelphia Museum of Art, January 30th to April 27th 2014.
National Gallery, Washington D.C., lectures and film screenings, February 2014.
Recently acquired projection works, MoMA, New York City, June 2013 – January 2014.
Les Lumieres, permanent exterior light installation, Cinémathèque Québécoise, Montréal, Launched September 2013.
WNDX Film Festival, Winnipeg, September 2013.
Group Show: The Piano at the Alberta Art Gallery, May 2013.
Solo exhibition at Galerie Martine Aboucaya, Paris, February 2013.
Several Snow films screened at the International Film Festival Rotterdam, January – February 2013.
Group Show, Builders: Canadian Biennial 2012, National Gallery of Canada, Ottawa. November 2012 – January 2013.
“Solo Snow”, solo exhibition at Galerie de l’UQAM , Montreal. January – February 2013.
“Objects of Vision”, solo exhibition at the Art Gallery of Ontario July 2012 – March 2013.
The Viewing of Six New Works, solo exhibition at MoCCA, Toronto, May 2013.
Group Show, Oh Canada at Mass MoCA, North Adams, Massachusetts, May, 2012 - Apr. 2013.
Panelist at Think:Film Experimental Film Congress, Arsenal Kino, Berlin, October 2012.
Group Show, Archival Dialogues, Ryerson Image Centre, Toronto, September 2012.
Group Show, Dreamland at Textile Museum of Canada, Toronto, May – September 2012.
Group Show, Ends of the Earth: Land Art to 1974 at L.A. MOCA, May – September 2012. Also at Haus der Kunst,
Munich, October 2012 – January 2013.
“Recent Works”, solo exhibition at Secession, Vienna, Feb-Apr, 2012.
“Solo Snow” at Akbank Sanat, Istanbul, Turkey, January – February 2012.

Solo exhibition, Jack Shainman Gallery, New York, January 2012.
Licht, Onda, Snow (Trio) concert series, Madrid, Barcelona and London, November 2011.
Screening and Lecture (with Gloria Moure) at CAIXAForum, Madrid, November 2011.
“Still Living” exhibition at Galerie Vu, Québec City, October 2011.
“Snow Encore”, solo exhibition at Galerie Sequence, Chicoutimi, Quebec, September 2011.
Michael Snow awarded the Gershon Iskowitz Prize by the Art Gallery of Ontario, June 2011.
World premiere of In The Way video installation at LOOP Film Festival, Barcelona, May 2011.
Sheeploop installation, Carmelitas, Barcelona, as part of the LOOP Film Festival, May 2011.
Lecture at School of Visual Art, New York City, March 2011.
Slide works, Anthology Film Archives, New York, March 2011.
“1+ 1+ 1 = 3”, 3 person exhibition including Snow, Herman Pitz and Bernard Voita, Kulturgest, Lisbon, Portugal,
February – March 2011.
SOLO SNOW. Video installations, photoworks, sound installations, films. Le Fresnoy, Lille, France, February – April
“On Line: Drawing through the 20th Century”, November 2010 - February 2011, group show, Museum of Modern Art,
New York. Snow’s work “A Man with a Line” shown.
Lectures at University of Southern California, Los Angeles, MFA programme, Dec 2011.
“Essential Cinema” - Wavelength screening with discussion by Annette Michelson and P. Adams Sitney, Jackman Hall,
October 4 2010.
“Two Torontonians: John Oswald and Michael Snow” video, photo installations, screenings and concert, International
House, Philadelphia. September – October 2010.
Retrospective of Michael Snow’s Cinema, Exis Film Festival, Seoul, Korea, September 2010.
Snow’s Slidelength (1971) included in the Bell Lightbox Gallery inaugural exhibition, Toronto International Film Festival,
September 2010.
Piano concert in context of Christian Marclay exhibition, Whitney Museum, New York. September 26, 2010.
Between Times (Photo Espana) Madrid, Reina Sofia and Sardinia (June to October 2010). Includes Snow’s video work
“Solar Breath (Northern Caryatids)”.
Snow had 3 works in “Traffic. Conceptual Art in Canada, 1965 - 1980.” University of Toronto Art Centre, Justine M.
Barnicke Gallery and Blackwoods Gallery, September – November 2010.
Feature photo work by Snow, “Paper Trail”, a 42-page colour spread in Turkish art magazine DOXA, May 2010.
Solo exhibition, Klosterfelde, Berlin, April 2010 – June 2010.
Solo exhibition, Galerie Martine Aboucaya, Paris, March – April 2010.
“Recent Snow”, solo exhibition of recent video installations at the Power Plant, Toronto, December 2009 – March 2010.


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Michael Snow

Michael Snow