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Antonio Tascona

Antonio Tascona was born in 1926, in St. Boniface, Manitoba. His parents were Sicilian immigrant, both of who died while Tascona was in his adolescence.  He studied art at the Winnipeg School of Art from 1947-49, under Joe Plaskett and Edith Carter. His post-graduate studies were completed under William McCloy and Richard Bowman from 1950-52 at the University of Manitoba's School of Art. During his studies he supported himself with a number of jobs, one of which included playing baseball with the Brandon Greys and the Winnipeg Winnipegers. 

Tascona worked as an electroplating and metal processing technician at Canadian Aerospace and later with Trans-Canada Airlines. This job experience had a huge influence on his artistic development and methods, it also inspired his exploration in mixed media works, more specifically the incorporation of metal and other synthetic materials into his art. 

Tascona often created non-representational prints and paintings, as well as murals and installation works. Over his artistic career he explored oil, acrylic lacquer, ducco, sand, pumice, printer's ink, epoxy resin, coloured pencil, India ink, crayon, and graphite, among other materials.

Tascona held his first solo show at the University of Manitoba in 1958.

From 1962-64 he lived in Montréal, where he befriended Plasticien artists Guido Molinari and Serge Tousignant.

Tascona's first major commission was a painted aluminium mural for the Manitoba Centennial Arts Centre concert hall, in Winnipeg, in 1967. The success of this piece lead to further public art commissions. He resigned from Air Canada in the 1970's to dedicate his time to his art. 

From 1969-1994, Tascona went on to complete more than nine mural and sculptural commissions.

Since 1950 he has had numerous solo and group exhibitions at institutions such as, the National Gallery, in Australia, Canada House, in London, among others.

In 2001, he was honoured with a fifty-year retrospective exhibition at the Winnipeg Art Gallery. Tascona received an honorary degree from the University of Manitoba, in 1984, and a Doctor of Laws from the University of Winnipeg, in 1994. In 1996 he was inducted as a Companion of the Order of Canada. He was also a member of The Royal Canadian Academy. 

Tascona died in 2006, in Winnipeg, Manitoba. 

 

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