Sorel Etrog2

Yellow Reflex, 1954, oil on shaped wooden panel with applied relief, 56 x 83 cm

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Sorel Etrog (born August 29, 1933, in Iași, Romania – died February 26, 2014, in Toronto, Ontario) was a renowned Canadian sculptor and painter. He left his native Romania for Israel in 1950, when he studied at the Tel Aviv Art Institute. His first solo exhibition was held in Tel Aviv in 1958 and earned him a scholarship at the Brooklyn Museum of Art in New York. In 1959, Etrog held his initial Canadian solo exhibition at Gallery Moos in Toronto. He moved from New York to Toronto in 1963, became a Canadian citizen, and represented Canada at the Venice Biennale in 1966.

From the late 1950s to the present day, Sorel Etrog’s work has been extensively exhibited in solo and group exhibitions across Canada and internationally. Notable solo exhibitions include: Gallery Moos, Toronto; Dominion Gallery, Montreal; Dunkelman Gallery, Toronto; Evelyn Aimis Gallery, Toronto; Christopher Cutts Gallery, Toronto; Marlborough Godard Gallery, Toronto; Buschlen Mowatt Gallery, Vancouver; Rose Fried Gallery, New York; Martha Jackson Gallery, New York; Pierre Matisse Gallery, New York; Marlborough Gallery, New York; Valley House Gallery, Dallas; Hokin Gallery, Palm Beach; Felix Landau Gallery, Los Angeles; Palazzo Strozzi, Florence; Schneider Gallery, Rome; Springer Gallery, Berlin; Hanover Gallery, London; Naviglio Gallery, Milan; Galerie d’Eendt, Amsterdam; Centre Culturel Canadien, Paris; and the Singapore Art Museum, Singapore. His work has been featured in numerous group exhibitions at the National Gallery of Canada, Ottawa, The Carnegie International, Pittsburgh, the Museum of Modern Art, New York, and The Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum, New York; Hirshhorn Museum and Sculpture Garden, Washington, D.C.; Palazzo Vecchio, Florence; Musée des Beaux-Arts, Le Havre; Musée Rodin, Paris; Kunstmuseum, Basel; and the Centre Georges Pompidou, Paris.

Etrog’s work is represented in major capitals and cities around the world and is included in the permanent collections of the National Gallery of Canada, Ottawa, the Art Gallery of Ontario, Toronto, the Montreal Museum of Fine Arts, the Hirshhorn Museum, Washington, D.C.; the Museum of Modern Art, New York; and the Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum, New York; University of California, Los Angeles; Kunstmuseum, Basel; Kröller-Müller Museum, Otterlo, Holland; Musée d’Art Moderne, Paris; Museo Internazionale d’Arte Contemporanea, Florence; Tate Gallery, London.

Etrog received several important commissions, including Expo ’67, Montreal, SunLife Centre, Toronto, Windsor Sculpture Garden, Windsor, Ontario, Los Angeles County Museum, and Olympic Park in Seoul, Korea. In 1968, Etrog was commissioned to design the Canadian Film Award that was originally named the “Etrog” and later renamed the “Genie.”

The artist is also well known for his writing, published plays, poetry, and non-fiction. Among his many collaborations, the most acclaimed are his book illustrations of Eugène Ionesco and Samuel Beckett in the late 1960s. Sorel Etrog and Marshall McLuhan collaborated on the publication “Spiral,” drawn from Etrog’s film of the same title, which was broadcast on CBC television in 1975.

Numerous reviews, articles, monographs, and catalog texts have been written about Etrog, including Pierre Restany’s comprehensive textbook, published by Prestel in 2001. A major exhibition of Etrog’s paintings and drawings from the 1960s was held in March 2008 at the Buschlen Mowatt Gallery, in Vancouver.

Sorel Etrog was appointed a member of the Order of Canada in 1994 and was made a Chevalier of Arts and Letters by the Government of France in 1996.

His final exhibition, titled “Sorel Etrog,” took place in 2013, when The Art Gallery of Ontario (AGO) celebrated him with a career-spanning exhibition that lasted from April 27, 2013, to September 29, 2013. The exhibition was located in the AGO’s Signy Eaton Gallery and featured 103 works, including sculptures, drawings, paintings, prints, films, published writings, and archival footage from the artist’s studio.




Gallery Moos, Toronto
Dominion Gallery, Montreal
Dunkelman gallery, Toronto
Evelyn Aimis Gallery, Toronto
Christopher Cutts Gallery, Toronto
Marlborough Godard Gallery, Toronto
Buschlen Mowatt Gallery, Vancouver
Rose Fried Gallery, New York
Martha Jackson Gallery, New York
Pierre Matisse Gallery, New York
Marlborough Gallery, New York
Valley House Gallery, Dallas
Hokin Gallery, Palm Beach
Felix Landau Gallery, Los Angeles
Palazzo Strozzi, Florence
Schneider Gallery, Rome
Springer gallery, Berlin
Hanover gallery, London
Naviglio Gallery, Milan
Galerie d’Eendt, Amsterdam
Centre Culturel Canadien, Paris
Singapore Art Museum, Singapore


National Gallery of Canada, Ottawa
The Carnegie International, Pittsburg
The Museum of Modern Art, New York
The Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum, New York
the Hirshhorn Museum and Sculpture garden, Washington, D.C.
Palazzo Vecchio, Florence
Musee des Beaux-Arts, Le Havre
Musee Rodin, Paris
Kuntsmuseum, Basel
Centre Georges Pompidou, Paris