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James Patten – In Memoriam

Back around 2005, I first met James Patten when he came before what was then the Windsor heritage committee with concerns about the impending demolition of the Cleary Guest House on the riverfront and the lack of concern/appreciation of Modern Architecture in Windsor. I was the lone member at the time to agree with him, and from that initial meeting we met again at a later date at his office at the Art Gallery of Windsor where he was the Curator of Contemporary Art. We brainstormed ideas about raising awareness when he proposed a photo exhibition of my work at the Art Gallery. That meeting led to a show and my first book, a companion to the exhibition. James eventually became the Chief Curator before leaving in 2010, to take a job at the McIntosh Gallery at the University of Western Ontario in London.

I was saddened to learn last week that James suddenly passed away last summer two years ago at the age of 60. (edit – time flies! We’re into 2024 now so last summer no longer cuts it) When he left the Art Gallery of Windsor, he did so to return to his native London. My condolences to all of his friends and family, as well as all the of artists he helped throughout his career. I was certainly one of them.

Here are a few links regarding his passing:

https://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/london/james-patten-remembered-for-championing-generations-of-contemporary-artists-in-london-1.6541644

https://www.uwo.ca/faculty_staff/memoriam/james_patten.html

https://museumlondon.ca/index.php?p=news/2022/in-memoriam-james-patten-june-26-2022

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