Barbara Astman Visual Artist
Toronto, Ontario

Barbara Astman belongs to a visionary group of artists who have continued to radicalize visual culture since the early 1970s by defining new ways of seeing. Over four decades, she has explored a wide range of photo-based media and produced work that has received national and international recognition. She is represented in important public, corporate and private collections, including the National Gallery of Canada, in Ottawa, the Bibliothèque Nationale, in Paris, the Art Gallery of Ontario (AGO), in Toronto, Deutsche Bank, in New York City, and the Victoria and Albert Museum, in London. Her artist’s archives are held in the E.P. Taylor Research Library & Archives, at the AGO.

As a Professor Emerita at OCAD University, in Toronto, she has been instrumental in inspiring generations of emerging artists. Active in the Toronto arts community, Astman has served on numerous boards and advisory committees, including the AGO Board of Trustees (2009–2013), and was President of the Board of Directors at the Prefix Institute of Contemporary Art (ICA), in Toronto. Astman is represented by the Corkin Gallery, in Toronto, and the Paul Kyle Gallery, in Vancouver.

Barbara Astman’s website

“For nearly 50 years, visual artist Barbara Astman has been creating a compelling and highly influential body of work in drawing, painting, sculpture/installation and photography. Yet to speak of her work in terms of these traditional media designations belies the innovative, experimental and inter-disciplinary nature of her practice. Astman’s work is contemporary in the truest sense of the word. She brings to her art a curiosity about new technological developments, an intimate connection to the present moment, and an active engagement with everyday life.” 

Nominator: Scott McLeod, Director, Prefix Institute of Contemporary Art 

Logo Art Bank

See the artist’s works that are part of the Canada Council Art Bank collection.

“For nearly 50 years, visual artist Barbara Astman has been creating a compelling and highly influential body of work[.]”

Selected works

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