Painting has been an object of pleasure, debate and commerce for centuries. Recently it has been the subject of much critical writing, several major publications, provocative exhibitions, and international symposia. While painting in Vancouver has always been aware and informed, and a part of current debates nationally and globally, the symposium organizers feel that there is a real need now, from the position of Vancouver, for a platform and venue to reflect upon and contribute to the knowledge and wisdom of current international painting practices.

The symposium is an opportunity for artists, writers, curators, students, educators and thinkers to come together, and question the relevance and importance of painting today. It will be an opportunity to listen to and discuss issues arising from various and diverse artistic positions represented by panelists, in the context of the many concurrent painting exhibitions occurring throughout Vancouver.

Beginning with an evening lecture by the internationally prominent keynote speaker, Isabelle Graw, who will situate a particular set of questions regarding contemporary painting, on the following day there will be four panel discussions, each one dealing with a different question in painting and its praxis with opportunities for the audience to engage in question periods.

This symposium is a timely opportunity to stage a public and academically driven discussion on painting today. In addition to the exhibition Entangled: Two Views on Contemporary Canadian Painting at the Vancouver Art Gallery opening at the time of the symposium, a citywide set of exhibitions about painting will also take place in public and commercial galleries in the autumn of 2017.