The Canadian Art Database

Robert Fones

Born, London, Ontario, March 10, 1949.


1962         London Artists' Workshop, London, Ontario under Art Seager.
1966-67   Saturday morning art classes. H.B. Beal Secondary School, London, Ontario.
                Taught by Hugh Mackenzie, Gerald Trottier, Larry Russell, Greg Curnoe.
1967-68   One year special arts course, H.B. Beal Secondary School, London, Ontario.


2004        Olga Korper Gallery, Toronto (April 3 - 28).
2003        Solo Exhibition, Toronto (Nov - Dec).
2000        Olga Korper Gallery, Toronto (November 4-25).
1998        Centennial Gallery, Oakville, Ontario (25 March - 10 May 1998).
1997        S.L. Simpson Gallery, Toronto (April, 1997).
1995        S.L. Simpson Gallery, Toronto (May, 1995).
1994        Presentation House, Vancouver, Canada, (April, 1994).
               S.L. Simpson Gallery, Toronto (May, 1994).
1992        Project Room #3, Mercer Union, Toronto, (November, 1992).
               S.L. Simpson Gallery, Toronto, Ontario, (December, 1992).
1991        Robert Fones: A Selected Survey,
               Circulated in Ontario by the Art Gallery of Ontario, Extension Services.
               Macdonald Stewart Art Centre, Guelph, Ontario, March 16 - April 14
               Art Gallery of Peterborough, Peterborough, Ontario, September 6 - October 6
               Art Gallery of Algoma, Sault Ste. Marie, Ontario, October 24 - December 1
               Art Gallery of Thunder Bay, Thunder Bay, Ontario, December 20, 1991 - February 9, 1992
1990        Carmen Lamanna Gallery, Toronto, Ontario.
1989        Robert Fones: Selected Works 1979 - 1989
               The Power Plant, Toronto, Ontario, May 5 - June 18
               Curated by Louise Dompierre.
1987        Carmen Lamanna Gallery, Toronto, Ontario.
1985        Carmen Lamanna Gallery, Toronto, Ontario.
1984        Embassy Cultural House, London, Ontario.
               Carmen Lamanna Gallery, Toronto, Ontario.
1982        Carmen Lamanna Gallery, Toronto, Ontario.
1981        Carmen Lamanna Gallery, Toronto, Ontario.
1979        Carmen Lamanna Gallery, Toronto, Ontario.
1974        A Space, Toronto, Ontario.
               Carmen Lamanna Gallery, Toronto, Ontario.
               Forest City Gallery, London, Ontario.
1973        Polyglot Gallery, London, Ontario.
1969        20/20 Gallery, London, Ontario.


2002        New Photography, Olga Korper Gallery, Toronto.
2001        House Guests: Contemporary Artists in the Grange, Art Gallery of Ontario, Toronto, Ontario.
2000        Type Cast, Wynick/Tuck Gallery, Toronto, Ontario.
2000        Logo City, curated by Barbara Fischer, Blackwood Gallery, Mississauga, Ontario.
1999        4 days at the white house, Toronto, Ontario.
1999        Sign Language, Olga Korper Gallery, Toronto, Ontario.
1998        Beal Art: 80 years of experiment, London Regional Art & Historical Museum, London, Ontario.
1998        Les Lieux communs, Centre international d’art contemporain de Montréal, Montréal, Québec.
1997        Rococo Tattoo, The Power Plant, Toronto, Ontario.
1997        Les Lieux communs, Musée régional de Rimouski, Rimouski, Québec.
1996        Reading and Re-reading, Selections from the Permanent Collection
               Centennial Gallery, Oakville, Ontario.
1996        Type Culture, Design Exchange, Toronto, Ontario.
1996        Ads by Artists, Art Metropole, Toronto, Ontario.
1995        Robert Fones, Alan McCollum, Douglas Walker, S.L Simpson Gallery.
1995        Temporal Borders: Image and Site, Leonard & Bina Ellen Art Gallery,
               Concordia University, Montreal, Quebec.
1995        Founding Members Exhibitions, Forest City Gallery, London, Ontario,
               20 November - 23 December, 1993.
1992        Reading: Public Signs, Private Acts, Curated by Walter Klepac. London Regional Art Gallery,
               London, Ontario, January 25 - April 14, 1992.
1992        Robert Fones, Robert McNealey, Michael Snow, S.L. Simpson Gallery, Toronto, Ontario
1992        Carambolage, Biennial of the Partner Regions 1, (Ontario portion curated by Philip Monk).
               Staatliche Kunsthalle, Baden-Baden, Germany.
1992        Fortuitous Fragments, Oakville Galleries, Oakville, Ontario.14 Nov. 1992 - 3 Jan. 1993.
1991        Working Truths/Powerful Fictions, MacKenzie Art Gallery, Regina, Saskatchewan.
               May 1 - June 30, 1991. Curated by Jessica Bradley.
1991        Curatorial Laboratory Project #7: Atlas, Art Gallery of Hamilton, Hamilton, Ontario,
               Sept 5 - Nov. 3, 1991.Curated by Ihor Holubizky.
1991        Reading: Public Signs, Private Acts, Curated by Walter Klepac.
               Art Gallery of York University, Nov 13 - Dec. 20, 1991.
1990        Mappings, An exhibition in the offices of the Premier of Ontario, the Honorable David Peterson,
               Queen's Park, Toronto. March 23 - Oct.12, 1990. Curated by Marnie Fleming.
1990        Photographic Inscription: Art from Toronto, Forum Fur Kulturaustausch, Stuttgart, Germany.
               Curated by Philip Monk.
1990        Global Art: Progressive Artists Working in the Industrialized World, Brent Gallery and
               The Galleria, Houston, Texas, July 5 - August 4, 1990.
1990        The Collectors' Cabinet, Curt Marcus Gallery, New York, Sept. 6 - 29, 1990.
               Curated by Carole Ann Klonarides.
1990        4th Annual Art Fair, Cold City Gallery, Toronto, December 1990.
1989        Selections from the John Labatt Limited Collection,
               London Regional Art and Historical Museums, London, Ontario.
1987        At the Threshold, S.L. Simpson Gallery, Toronto, Ontario.
1987        The Writing is on the Wall, Gallery 101, Ottawa, Ontario.
1986        Focus: Canadian Art From 1960 To 1985, Art Cologne, 20.
               Internationaler Kunstmarkt, Cologne, Germany.
1985        The Artists Collect, London Regional Art Gallery, London, Ontario.
1984        Canadian Paintings & Sculptures, 49th Parallel, New York.
1982        Small Sculpture, Art Gallery at Harbourfront, Toronto.
1981        Carmen Lamanna Gallery, Toronto, Ontario.
1978        Dalhousie Drawing Exhibition, Dalhousie University Gallery, Halifax, Nova Scotia.
1977        Abstractions, Canadian Cultural Centre, Paris, France.
1976        Ontario Now -- A Survey of Contemporary Art, Kitchener-Waterloo Art Gallery, Kitchener,
               Ontario, January 8 - February 1, 1976. Art Gallery of Hamilton, Hamilton, Ontario,
               February 6 - February 29, 1976.
1976        Montreal Olympics Visual Arts Division Exhibition, Exhibition Hall, Place Bonaventure,
               Montreal, Quebec. Extension of Montreal Olympics Visual Arts Division Exhibition to the
               Gallery Stratford, Stratford, Ontario.
1975        Carmen Lamanna at the Owens Art Gallery, Owens Art Gallery,
               Mount Allison University, Sackville, N.B.
1974        Forest City Gallery, London, Ontario.Media Gravures et Multiples, Montreal, Quebec.
               Carmen Lamanna Gallery, Toronto, Ontario.           
1974        Wood, The London Public Library and Art Museum.
1973        Carmen Lamanna Gallery, Toronto, Ontario.
1972        Carmen Lamanna Gallery, Toronto, Ontario.
1972        4 from London, Alberta College of Art Gallery, Calgary, Alberta (Organized by
               London Public Library and Art Museum).
1972        Image Bank Postcard Show, (Touring exhibition in Canada),
               Carmen Lamanna Gallery, Toronto, Ontario.
1971        Toronto 4 + London 1, Carmen Lamanna Gallery, Toronto, Ontario.
1970        Seven London Artists, The Rothman's Art Gallery of Stratford, Stratford, Ontario.
1969        20/20 Gallery, London, Ontario. University of Western Ontario Arts Festival, London, Ontario.
1969        Swinging London, Organized and toured by the University of Waterloo, Waterloo, Ontario.
               London S/W 17, The Rothman's Gallery of Stratford, Stratford, Ontario.
1968        20/20 Gallery, London, Ontario.


2004        Scrivener Square, Toronto
2000        Baycrest Centre for Geriatric Care, Toronto Metro Toronto Convention Centre.
1991        Banners for All Star Game, SkyDome, Toronto.


1988        Walls on Fire, YYZ, Toronto, Ontario
1993        The Chair Project, The Power Plant, Toronto; Ikea: January 22 -28, 1993
                The Power Plant: Jan 30 - February 3, 1993.
1995        Money Talks...Art Walks, Linda Genereux Gallery, Toronto, 30 May 1995.
                Art Metropole silent auction.
1997        Flash!, The Power Plant, Toronto, 5 March 1997
1997        Oh Gawd...not another art auction!, Christopher Cutts Gallery, Toronto, 4
                June 1997. Art Metropole silent auction.
1997        The Exquisite Corpse in Lotusland, Presentation House Gallery, Vancouver.
                19 October 1997. Silent auction.
1997        The Seven Deadly Sins, Lonsdale Gallery, Toronto. C Magazine silent auction.
1998        Toronto Art...Seen, 25 April 1998. C Magazine studio tour.
1998        Romantic Love, Croft House, University of Toronto, 24 April 1998. Silent auction for                       Descant Magazine.
1999        partyhat party!, 18 December, 1999, Art Metropole, Toronto.
2001        Letters For Literacy, Toronto.
2003        Canadian Art Auction
2004        Canadian Art Auction


1980       "A Theory of Snow Prevention" in The Toronto Research Group, ed.
               Canadian "Pataphysics. Canada: Underwich Editions, 1980, 38-40.
               "Four of the Bobo Stories" Writing, no. 1, Summer 1980, 3-7.
1981       "The Turtle" in David, Jack and Jon Redfern, ed. Short Short Stories.
               Canada: Holt, Rinehart and Winston of Canada, Limited, Toronto, 1981, 71-74.
               "Art" [from the exhibition: Ebony Carvings of Charcoal.] File, vol. 5, no. 2, 1981, 29-35.
1984       "The Imperative Voice" [review of Cathy Daley], C Magazine, no.2, Summer 1984, 36-37.
1985        Field Identification. Toronto: Art Metropole.
1986       "Royden Rabinowitch" Parachute, no. 44, Sept./Oct./Nov. 1986, 61.
1986       "Natural Range of Canada Plum" Provincial Essays, vol. 3, 1986, between pages 48-49.
1986       "Will Gorlitz" Vanguard, vol. 15, no. 6, Dec. 86/Jan. 87, 29.
1987       "Jeff Wall" Vanguard, vol. 16. no. 2, April/May 1987, 29.
1988       "Christine Davis" Vanguard, vol. 17, no. 1, Feb./Mar. 1988, 30.
1988       "No Flies on Meno" [review of Stan Denniston], Vanguard, June/July 1988.
1989       "Working with Physics" (review of Jaan Poldaas and Brian Groombridge),
               Vanguard, February/March 1989.
1989       "A Man and his 21-year old turtle" C Magazine, #22, June, 1989, 29-32.
1989       "John Lennon" in Brushes with Greatness, ed. by Banks, Russell,
               Michael Ondaatje and David Young, The Coach House Press, Toronto, 1989, 40-41.
1989       "Interview with Micah Lexier" Mercer Union, Toronto, November 1989.
1989       "Obsession, Resuscitation, Exhibition" Azure, Vol. 6, No. 62, December/January 89/90,                    14-16.
1990        A fontner in the Works, Toronto: The Power Plant, 1990.
1990       "Some Comments on My Work" Northward Journal, 52-53, 1990, 9-11.
1990       "Field Identification" Northward Journal, 52-53, 1990, 15-25.
1991       "When Form Becomes Content" M5V Magazine 1, 1991, 25 - 27.
1991       "A Carpenter's Guide" Descant, 74, Fall 1991, Vol. 22, No. 3, 67 -75.
1991       "Erratics Train" Artist's project in Eye of Nature, Daina Augaitis,
1991        Helga Pakassar, Banff, Alberta, Walter Phillips Gallery, 89-102.
1993       "Stay, Sit, Heel: Tom Dean's Sculptural Canon", C Magazine # 37, Spring 1993.
1993       "Local Colour", C Magazine # 38, Summer 1993.
1994        Back cover of AIGA Journal of Graphic Design, Vol. 12, No. 3. [Detail of Luddite Chest.]
1994       "Ethos/Nomos/Physis" Waterloo Journal of Architecture, Vol. 2: Sight/Site, 1994.
1994       "Comments on the Historiated Letters" Robert Fones, Historiated Letters,
               Presentation House Gallery, Vancouver, 1994.
1995       "Smoke and Mirrors" In ROBERT SMITHSON, Operations on Nature,
               Matthew Teitelbaum, Art Gallery of Ontario, Sept. 1995.
1996       "Turning the Tables: recent work by Gordon Lebredt", C Magazine # 49, April - June 1996.
1996       "Amazing Space: Donald Judd's Works in Marfa", C Magazine # 50, July 1996.
1997        Head Paintings, Coach House Books, Toronto.
1998        These Goods are Manufactured, Oakville Galleries, Oakville, Ontario.
1998       "Toy Box Junkies" C Magazine # 59, September 1998.
1999       "Hand Tools" Murray Favro, exhibition catalogue, London Regional Art and
               Historical Museums/Mackintosh Gallery, London, Ontario.
2001       "A Visit to Stonyground" The Horticultural Societies of Parkdale & Toronto, September 2001.
               "Tree of Heaven, Roots from Hell" The Horticultural Societies of Parkdale & Toronto,
               October 2001.
2002       "The Kingly Pleasures of the Jardin du Palais Royal" The Horticultural Societies of
               Parkdale & Toronto, January 2002.
2002       "Re-viewed: Robert Fones on his work." Art Gallery of Ontario, Sept. 2002.
2002       "Reviewed: Robert Fones on Donald Judd." Art Gallery of Ontario, Sept. 2002.
2002       We are not Greg Curnoe. Co-edited with Andy Patton. Open Letter, Eleventh Series,                        Number 5, Summer 2002.
2002       "Repairing the Moon." Brick, Number 70 , Winter 2002.
2004       "Sign Language." Canadian Art, Fall 2004.
2004       "Crossed Lines: New Territories of Design." [Book review]. Azure, November/December                2004.


Crawford, Lenore, "His bag--guinea pigs, wood boxes." The London Free Press, March 22, 1969.
Martin, Ron, "Bob Fones at 20/20." 20 Cents Magazine, vol. 3, no. 1-2, April, 1969,
Lord, Barry, "Robert Fones, 20/20 Gallery, March, 1969." Arts Canada, June, 1969, 46.
---------------,"What London, Ontario, has that Everywhere Else Needs."
   Art in America, September/October, 1969, 103-105.
Crawford, Lenore, "Mix of dieties, licorice men and his poems." The London Free Press, April 1,      1972.
---------------,"Artist 'sparkles' in pictures, poetry."
   The London Free Press, May 23, 1973.
Dewdney, Christopher, "Aquatic Sections and Interior Cartography[.] Robert Fones at Carmen
   Lamanna May 11-30." Only Paper Today, Vol. 1, No. 8, June 22, 1974.
Dragland, Stan, "The Forest City book of poetry more respected than admired."
   The London Free Press, July 13, 1974.
Andreae, Janice, "Artist's drawings express ideas
   The London Free Press, Nov. 9, 1974.
Alpert, Barry, "Written on the Wind (of Lake Ontario
   Open Letter, Third Series #2, Fall 1975, 5-25.
McFadden, David, "The Twilight of Self Consciousness." in Helwig, David ed.
   The Human Elements, Canada: Oberon Press, 1978, 78-96.
Dault, Gary Michael, "Taking the wraps off butter."
   Toronto Star, September 22, 1979.
Purdie, James, "Robert Fones."
   The Globe and Mail, , September 22, 1979, Section E, 9.
Fleming, Martha, "Making the Crystal Clear."
   Centerfold, Vol. 4, No. 1, November, 1979, 64-66.
Mays, John Bentley, "Robert Fones at the Carmen Lamanna Gallery" The Globe and Mail
   June 28, 1984, Section E, 5.
McFadden, David, "Robert Fones, Carmen Lamanna Gallery" Vanguard Vol. 13, No. 8, October, 1984, 29.
Hume, Christopher, "Fones Calls Back" The Toronto Star November 24, 1985.
Mays, John Bentley, "Heatwave has its cold spots" The Globe and Mail February 13, 1986, Section C, 4.
Anonymous, [description of Field Identification.]
   umbrella newsletter, Vol. 9, No. 2., October,1986.
Hitzeroth, Connie, "Robert Fones, Carmen Lamanna Gallery."
   Now, June 11-17, 1987.
Young, Jane, "Robert Fones, Carmen Lamanna Gallery" Vanguard Vol. 16, No. 4,
    September/October, 1987, 37.
Grenville, Bruce, At the Threshold Toronto: S.L.Simpson Gallery, Sept. 18 - Oct. 10, 1987.
Dompierre, Louise, Robert Fones: Selected Works 1979 - 1989 Toronto: The Power Plant, 1989.
Mays, John Bentley, "Beautiful Enigmas and no-nonsense realism" The Globe and Mail 2 June 1989.
Williamson, Janice, "Robert Fones, The Power Plant, Toronto" C Magazine 23 (Sept. 1989), 70-72.
Randolph, Jeanne, "Product and Territory" C Magazine 24 (December 1989), 40-44.
Hume, Christopher, "Serene works establish Fones as sculptor and man of letters"
    The Toronto Star 26 January 1990, D18.
McGrath, Jerry, "An Archaeologist of the Present."
    Northward Journal, 52-53, 1990, 27-42.
Monk, Philip, Photographic Inscription: Art from Toronto Stuttgart: Institut Fur Auslandsbeziehungen,
Monk, Philip, "AGO Collection: Robert Fones" AGO News February 1991, Vol. 13, Number 2, 2.
MacDonald, Max, "Butter, Ebony and Wallpaper" The Ontarion (Guelph, Ontario), 9 April 1991.
Klepac, Walter, Reading: Public Signs Private Acts. Toronto: Art Gallery of York University, 1991.
Bradley, Jessica, Working Truths/Powerful Fictions Regina: Mackenzie Art Gallery, 1992.
Brooks, Sharon, Project Room #3 Toronto: Mercer Union, 1992.
Fleming, Marnie, Fortuitous Fragments Oakville: Oakville Galleries, 1992.
Monk, Philip, "Models and Maps, Signs and Systems" Carambolage Biennial of the Partner Regions 1, Baden-Baden, Germany: Staatliche Kunsthalle, Baden-Baden, 1992.
Taylor, Kate, "Illuminating the gap between language and experience"
    The Globe and Mail 11 December 1992.
Laing, Carol, "Robert Fones" Parachute #70, 1993.
Monk, Philip, "Robert Fones: Models, Maps and Signs" C Magazine #39, Fall 1993.
Bradley, Jessica, "Contemplating the ‘Falsely Obvious’" Robert Fones, Historiated Letters
    Presentation House Gallery, Vancouver, 1994.
Bringhurst, Robert, "Literal Meaning"
    Robert Fones, Historiated Letters Presentation House Gallery, Vancouver, 1994.
Feinstein, Roni."Report from Toronto" Art In America Nov. 94, Vol. 82, No. 11. Pg. 41-42.
Jordan, Betty Ann, "Robert Fones" Canadian Art Vol. 12, No. 3, Fall 1995.
Miller, Earl, "Robert Fones, S.L. Simpson Gallery, Toronto" C Magazine Fall 1995.
White, Karen R., "Reading and Re-reading" Oakville: Centennial Gallery, Oakville, Ontario, 1996.
Mark, Lisa Gabrielle, "Robert Fones, S.L. Simpson Gallery" Art Forum Fall 1997.
Diamond, Reid, "Fat Thin Flat" Lola Number 1 1997.
Hart, Diane, "Can you identify any of these factory workers", The Oakville Beaver 15 April 1998.
St-Pierre, Gaston, "Les Lieux communs: culture populaire et art contemporain"
    Les Lieux communs Centre de sculpture Est-Nord-Est, 1998.
Monk, Philip, Rococo Tattoo The Power Plant, Toronto 1998.
Dault, Gary Michael, "Secrets beneath the surface", The Globe and Mail 18 November 2000.
Milroy, Sarah, "At home on the Grang", The Globe and Mail 15 September 2001.
Dault, Gary Michael, "Past Master," The Globe and Mail, 11 May 2002.
Dault, Gary Michael, "Floating around, looking at things," The Globe and Mail, 24 April 2004.
Milroy, Sarah, "Visual Arts," The Globe and Mail, 24 April 2004.


1990        A Spanner in the Works, The Power Plant, Toronto, January 19 - February 25, 1990.
               Exhibition of furniture designed by Russell Spanner between 1950 and 1953.
               Forty page illustrated catalogue with essay by Robert Fones.


Forest City Gallery, London, Ontario, 1973 - 1976.
Board of Directors, Mercer Union, Toronto, 1987 -1990.
Art Gallery of Ontario Acquisitions Committee, Toronto, 1996 - 1998
Art Gallery of Ontario, Board of Trustees, 1997- 2001
Design Exchange, Acquisitions Advisory Board, Toronto, 1996 -
C Magazine, Board of Directors, 1999 - 2002.
Artists Consultancy Committee, Art Gallery of Ontario (Transformation AGO) 2004


London Regional Art and Historical Museums, London, Ontario.
National Gallery of Canada, Ottawa, Ontario.
Canada Council Art Bank, Ottawa, Ontario.
Dalhousie University Art Gallery, Halifax, Nova Scotia.
Art Gallery of Ontario, Toronto, Ontario.
Mackintosh Art Gallery, London, Ontario.
Oakville Galleries, Oakville, Ontario.