Shary Boyle

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Shary Boyle
Born Shary Boyle
(1972-05-26) May 26, 1972 (age 42)
Scarborough, Ontario, Canada
Nationality Canadian
Education Ontario College of Art and Design
Known for Sculpture, Painting, Performance art
Movement Feminist art movement
Awards Hnatyshyn Foundation Award (2010), Gershon Iskowitz Prize (2009)[1]

Shary Boyle (born May 26, 1972 in Scarborough, Ontario) is a Canadian artist who works with sculpture, painting, drawing and performance. She lives in Toronto.

Early Life and Education[edit]

Boyle was born in Scarborough, Ontario, the youngest of five children. Her father worked repairing screen and glass doors. She attended high school at Wexford Collegiate School for the Arts, then went on to post-secondary studies at the Ontario College of Art, graduating in 1994.[2]

Art career[edit]

Shary Boyle works in many media, including drawing, painting, sculpture, and performance art. Her work tends to explore themes of gender and class, evoking and exploring emotional states through exquisite craftsmanship. She is particularly known for her explorations of the figure through porcelain figurines.

Boyle has performed at a number of venues including VonRot GmbH, Berlin (2001), the All Tomorrow's Parties festival, Los Angeles (2002), the Art Gallery of Ontario, Toronto (2004, 2006), the Olympia Theatre, Paris (2005), the Fonal Festival, Finland (2005), the Sonar Festival, Barcelona (2005), and the Hammer Museum, Los Angeles (2006, 2008). In addition, her work has been exhibited widely since 2000. In 2006, her work, Untitled 2004, was featured in a solo exhibition at the Power Plant in Toronto. Two ears later, the Southern Alberta Art Gallery showcased her work in an exhibition, and in 2010, Boyle's solo exhibition Flesh and Blood opened at the Art Gallery of Ontario. This exhibition was a joint venture between the AGO, Galerie de l’UQAM and the Vancouver Contemporary Art Gallery. It was curated by Louise Déry.[2][3] Boyle represented Canada at the 2013 Venice Biennale with her project Music for Silence.[4]

In addition to her sculptural and performance work, Boyle also collaborates with musicians, creating "live" drawings, which are animated and projected onstage during their performances. In 2006, Boyle collaborated with Doug Paisley in forming Dark Hand and Lamplight, an opening act for Will Oldham's California tour.[5] She has also worked with Feist, Peaches, and Christine Fellows.[6] In 2012, she collaborated with the latter to present an original theater piece, Everything Under the Moon at the Enwave Theatre in Toronto.[7]


Boyle has won a number of awards, receiving the Canada Council for the Arts International Studio Program residency at Space in London, UK, in 2007,[5] and the 2009 Gershon Iskowitz Prize.[8] She received the K. M. Hunter Artist Award in 2000, the Chalmers Foundation Award in 2004,[9] was a finalist for the Sobey Art Award in 2007 and 2009,[7] and in 2010, she won the Hnatyshyn Foundation Visual Arts Award.[10]


Her work has been featured in a number of publications. These include The Story of Jane Doe (Random House, 2003), Witness My Shame (Conundrum Press, 2004), Kramer's Ergot #6 and # 7 (Buenaventura Press, 2006, 2008), Francis Ford Coppola's Zoetrope: All-Story (AZX Publications, 2007), Furnish and Fragiles (Die Gestalten, 2007, 2008) The Believer magazine (McSweeney's Publishing, 2008), Otherworld Uprising: Shary Boyle (Conundrum Press, 2008).[5] Flesh and Blood (UQAM Press, 2011), and the 2013 Venice Biennale monograph Music for Silence: Shary Boyle (National Gallery of Canada, 2013).


  1. ^
  2. ^ a b Mark Medley, "Why art star Shary Boyle stays put". National Post, September 11, 2010. Retrieved June 3, 2011.
  3. ^ Murray Whyte. "Shary Boyle at the AGO: Outsider gets in". Toronto Star, September 11, 2010. Retrieved June 3, 2011.
  4. ^ "Almost Famous: Shary Boyle steps onto the world stage at the Venice Biennale". The Walrus, July/August 2013.
  5. ^ a b c "Shary Boyle", National Gallery of Canada. [1]. Retrieved March 31, 2014.
  6. ^ "Artist Shary Boyle gets 3-city show". CBC News, July 28, 2010. Retrieved June 3, 2011.
  7. ^ a b "Shary Boyle". The Banff Center. Retrieved March 31, 2014.
  8. ^ "Toronto artist Shary Boyle wins $25,000 prize", Canadian Press, October 27, 2009. Reprinted in CTV News. Retrieved June 3, 2011.
  9. ^ "Shary Boyle CV," Jessica Bradley Gallery. [2]. Retrieved March 31, 2014.
  10. ^ "Toronto's Shary Boyle wins Hnatyshyn award". CBC News, December 2, 2010. Retrieved June 3, 2011.

External links[edit]