Eric Metcalfe epitomizes the avant-garde in Canadian art. Since the late 1960s, his art practice has crossed, and merged, various disciplines, including painting, drawing, sculpture, installation, printmaking, performance, video and film. His work--particularly his alter ego Dr. Brute (1969-1975)--has close ties with conceptual art and the Fluxus movement, which focused on the many intersections and blendings of different artistic media and disciplines, as well as contemporary cultural activities, especially jazz, which was an early interest and an important influence on Metcalfe. Born in Vancouver in 1940, Metcalfe grew up in Victoria and was exposed to his lifelong passions of art and jazz as a boy. His first public show was in 1966, and in 1973, he co-founded Western Front, a pioneering, artist-run centre in Vancouver. Metcalfe has a BFA (Visual Arts) with Distinction from the University of Victoria (1970); he has taught at the Emily Carr Institute of Art and Design, at the University of British Columbia (as visiting artist), and through the Vancouver School Board. Special influences for him were Bill West, Jan Zach, Pat Martin Bates, Richard Ciccimarra, Max Bates, Flemming Jorgensen, Don Harvey, John Dobereiner, Peter Daglish, and others.
Metcalfe's work can be found in public collections nationally and internationally, including the National Gallery of Canada, the Museum of Modern Art, New York, the Art Gallery of Greater Victoria, and the Vancouver Art Gallery.