Cicansky, Vic (1935-)

Vic Cicansky, who works also in wood and steel, is one of Saskatchewan’s best-known ceramic and bronze sculptors. He was born in Regina on February 12, 1935, the eldest son of Romanian parents. He grew up in Regina’s east end, quit school in grade nine, and became a carpenter like his father. Later, he completed matriculation at Regina College, received a BEd from the University of Saskatchewan in 1965, and a BA from the University of Saskatchewan, Regina Campus, in 1967. He taught in primary and high school for seven years, before gaining an MFA at Davis Campus, University of California, in1970; he also taught at the University of Regina in the Faculty of Education and the Visual Arts Department from 1970 to 1993.

Cicansky’s work falls into three phases: the early funk work at Davis and in Regina, followed by his outhouse series and his Volkswagen series; his jars and pantries, starting in 1978 (the jars have remained his trademark); and the bronze work, especially that which follows the random processes of nature in the tables and bonsai trees. Almost all of his work follows processes of nature, whether domestic or wild, orderly or random. He is also a populist, making art that can be enjoyed by anyone, and a regionalist who often celebrates prairie life.

Cicansky has a provincial, national and international reputation, with a major show at the MacKenzie Art Gallery in 1983 and one-man shows in commercial galleries in Regina, Edmonton, Vancouver, and Toronto every two years since the 1980s. He has been part of many international shows in the United States, and received the Saskatchewan Order of Merit in 1997. In his late 60s, he remains the art worker he has been all his adult life, spending time in his studio every day of the week and making the joyous work for which he is known.

Don Kerr

Further Reading

Kerr, D. 2004. Victor Cicansky, the Garden of the Mind. Calgary: University of Calgary Press.