100 McCaul St, Toronto, ON M5T 1W1, Canada
Barbara McGivern studied Experimental Art at the Ontario College of Art and Design in Toronto, Ontario, Canada.
Barbara McGivern in her Studio in Dubai.
Barbara McGivern studied Experimental Art at the Ontario College of Art and Design in Toronto, Ontario, Canada from 1984 under famous Canadian artists such as Graham Coughtry and Ian Carr-Harris. She graduated in 1988.
Barbara McGivern went to Europe in 1971, and then finally settled in London in the fall of 1974.
Returning to Toronto in 1976 she worked with Columbia Pictures Television until 1981 when they stopped producing TV programs in Canada. She then started painting at her first art studio in downtown Toronto, her work at that time was very naive and was inspired by the English artist Beryl Cook.
In 1992 Barbara went to Russia where she saw the shows of the Impressionist artist Matisse at the Hermitage and Fernando Botero at the Pushkin, Moscow. During the same trip Barbara saw the Barnes Collection at Musee D'Orsay, Paris and was inspired by such masterpieces. She produced a series of paintings based on the Impressionist, with her own interpretation of The Barnes Collection, which was later shown at Musee Hotel Baudy in Giverny.
Throughout the 1990's McGivern was represented by galleries in Yorkville, Toronto, Montreal, Edmonton as well as Zurich, Berlin, London, Paris and Madrid.
In 1996 McGivern went on an off-road driving trip across the Middle East, following the British adventurer Wilfred Thesiger's path through the deserts of Oman and Saudi Arabia and clocking a grueling 3,000 miles in 8 days. While driving through the deserts she was amazed by the colours she saw and the richness of the sands which opened up a new concept to her work, where her acrylic paintings now recounted the deserts from a Canadian perspective, using gold as a colour as opposed to precious metal.
In addition, Barbara McGivern had a number of solo and museum exhibitions and was commissioned by a number of companies, including Swarovski Crystals (Dubai, UAE), Emirates Tower Hotel (Dubai, UAE), JL Albright Venture Partners (Toronto, Ontario, Canada), and Matrix Hotel (Edmonton, Alberta, Canada), among others.
Her work had also been part of the numerous group exhibitions since 1988.
Besides, she was represented by the Majlis Gallery, Dubai and was commissioned to do 22 paintings for the Jumeirah Emirates Towers Hotel.
Day & Night
Take Me Away With You
Study for TV
What About Me
Talk Talk Walk Walk
Study for CV
Study for Blue Fantasy
On the road Again
It Must be Love
Homage to McGivern
Lemoncello on the Rocks
Green Yellow Square
Corniche Series, Black.White
Dance of the Jumblies
A typical Barbara McGivern painting vibrates with barely restrained energy. Boldly composed and saturated with colour, her canvases are basically abstract. The square has become one of her favourite devices, but she is also inspired by the shapes and colours of landscape.
"My paintings are inspired by my trips, especially to the deserts of Oman and the UAE. I found the dunes to be a magical place with colours that I never thought could be possible in such a vastness of sand."
"I have found that the gold has added an empowering element to my paintings by adding a richness that could never be achieved with any other material. I paint over it, drip paint on it and sometime cover it up completely because I did not like the painting and started over...there are many paintings out there with layers of gold under them...but you can not melt the gold down as it is so fine and wafer thin....but I could not use anything else but real gold..."
Settling in London in the fall of 1974, Barbara McGivern became a member of The Arts Club Mayfair and Chelsea Arts Club.