Return to The Fortress by Julie Gladstone
The Museum of Jewish Montreal (MJM) proudly presents: Return to The Fortress by Julie Gladstone, featuring a series of abstract portraits and landscapes which draw from medieval Sephardic iconography, ancient legends, and the native flora of Béjar, Spain.
During a recent residency and solo exhibition hosted by the David Melul Jewish Museum in the medieval village of Béjar, Spain, Gladstone was given an opportunity to explore her Sephardic family’s roots and a legacy of diaspora that has lasted since her family’s expulsion from the town of Béjar in 1492 during the Spanish Inquisition. Following this experience, the artist is pleased to present an interdisciplinary body of work that considers the mythology of homeland and connection to ancestry.
Return to The Fortress —the first installment of the MJM’s 2019-2020 exhibition series Inside/Out— combines abstract painting and personal narrative to explore themes of identity, belonging, and reconciliation. By depicting motifs of protection and camouflage in her work, Gladstone’s disguises reveal as much as they hide. Drawings, textile work, and an installation altarpiece further explore intersections between personal and ancestral healing, and the duality of home as both physical place and internal space.
Julie Gladstone is a Canadian artist currently based in Toronto. Holding a BFA from Concordia University (Montreal), Gladstone has had solo exhibitions at Walnut Contemporary, Navillus Gallery, GN Contemporary, Museo Judio David Melul de Béjar, and her work has been included in group exhibitions across Canada and the US, receiving media attention from CBC Arts, The Guardian, Toronto Life and Notable.
Gladstone is currently an MFA Candidate in the Interdisciplinary Studio Arts program at OCADU, and is the recipient of the Artscape Award (2014), the CSCE Emerging Artist Award at the Art Gallery of Alberta (2016). She has participated in artist residencies at Artscape Gibraltar Point, SIM International Artist Residency (Iceland), and MUSE (Montreal). Her work can be found in private collections in Canada, the US, Germany and England, the City of Edmonton, the Canadian Society of Civil Engineers, The David Melul Jewish Museum, and El Ayuntamiento de Bejar.
In 2019, Gladstone was invited by the David Medul Jewish Museum and the City of Bejar, Spain –the town from which her Sephardic ancestors were expelled over 500 years ago —to produce a body of work exploring themes related to diaspora, belonging, and mythologies of home.
The Museum of Jewish Montreal is an innovative place to connect with Montreal’s Jewish life and identify, share our diverse heritage, and create new cultural experiences. Our 2019/2020 contemporary art exhibition series Inside/Out, examines what exists in the space between inside and out, personal and public, or real and imagined. The Inside/Out exhibition series has been made possible through the Shaping our Future Grant, thanks to the generous support of the Jewish Community Foundation of Montreal, the Nussia and Andre Aisenstadt Foundation, and Federation CJA.
Join us for the Vernissage on Thursday, October 24 from 7pm to 9pm, and again on Sunday, October 27 for Tête-à-tête: Artist Julie Gladstone in Conversation with Emma Haraké