Linda Jansma, Robert McLaughlin Gallery Icon

Linda Jansma is the retiring curator at Robert McLaughlin Gallery in Oshawa, having started her career there as Registrar more than 28 years ago. During her iconic tenure, Linda was a champion of the most interesting and influential Canadian artists, and a person of inexhaustible energy. She brought enthusiasm and intelligence to her work, which has been appreciated and honoured for nearly three decades.

Jansma was a leader in the field, organizing the first important retrospective of Rody Kenny Courtice, an early modernist. She brought national attention to Jock Macdonald, a member of Painters Eleven, by discovering a treasure trove of his early work in Glasgow. Her profile of MacDonald was honoured as the best curatorial writing that year.

She was also particularly proud of RMG’s purchasing of commissioned public sculptures by Mary Anne Barkhouse, Reinhard Reitzenstein, Doug Coupland, Sarindar Dhaliwal and Tazeen Qayyum.

The RMG was founded in 1967, following Oshawa designer William Caldwell’s exhibit of local art at a commercial space on Simcoe Street. Inspired by Caldwell’s lead, Ewart McLaughlin and his wife Margaret (painter Alexandra Luke) provided major financial support and works from their own private collection toward the establishment of an expanded public art gallery for the City of Oshawa.

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