U of S to display rescued Perehudoff murals

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE - May 27, 2013 Saskatoon - Unique wall murals by the late artist William Perehudoff will go on public view on the University of Saskatchewan campus, the first time they have been seen since being rescued from certain destruction by a group of concerned Saskatoon citizens.

The exhibition William Perehudoff: The Mural Room opens May 28 in the College Art Galleries. An opening and public reception is planned for May 31 starting with remarks at 7:30 pm.
Visitors to the gallery, located in the Peter MacKinnon Building, will enter a re-creation of the reception room in the now-demolished Intercontinental Packers/Mitchell's Gourmet Foods building. This is where Perehudoff, at the request of company owner Fred Mendel, painted the larger-than-life human figures in 1953. When the building was slated for demolition in 2009, a group of people mounted a community effort to save the images.
"The murals in this exhibition are significant on several fronts," said Kent Archer, curator of the exhibit and director of the University of Saskatchewan Art Collection. "Not only were they painted by one of this province's most renowned artists and represent a very important period in his life as a painter, but they come with a tremendous backstory of dedication to their preservation by people who recognized and appreciated their value to this city and its art history."
When Maple Leaf Foods expressed no interest in saving the artworks from the wrecking ball, a number of local citizens, including several from the University of Saskatchewan, mounted a campaign to rescue the murals. Ontario conservator Ian Hodkinson was brought in by the University of Saskatchewan to painstakingly remove the murals from the reception room's plaster walls. They have been remounted for the College Art Gallery exhibition and will eventually find a permanent home in the new Remai Art Gallery of Saskatchewan in Saskatoon.
"The University of Saskatchewan and those who never waivered in their effort to save the murals are more than delighted that they are being offered for public view right here on campus," said Archer. "The Perehudoff murals are a community treasure for all to enjoy."
William Perehudoff: The Mural Room will continue in the College Art Gallery until Aug. 31. Also opening in the College Art Galleries May 28 is Zip The Bright, an exhibition of animated gifs by Sara Ludy, Lorna Mills, Nicolas Sassoon and Rick Silva.
For more information, contact
Kent Archer
University Art Collection
University of Saskatchewan
cell 306-280-2800

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