Contemporary Art, Culture

Art Toronto 2015

So I know I’ve been a little MIA recently, and for those who don’t know I’ve moved to Lake Louise, Alberta for a bit to work. It’s definitely been an adjustment from the city life I’m used to, but I love it here so far. But recently I got the opportunity to come back to Toronto last week to participate in Art Toronto 2015, Canada’s contemporary art fair and I worked with Susan Eley from Susan Eley Fine Art Gallery in New York City.

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“You Look Great” by Jade Rude, Cavier20

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At first, I was a little scared and wasn’t sure what to expect but Susan made it so easy for me and taught me so much about what it’s like to work at an art fair (I finally learned what those little red dots mean!). She has been to many art fairs south of the border in Miami but has never been to one in Canada, so the fair was new to both of us. I bumped into a few people I knew from Gallery 44 and Stephen Bulger Gallery also had a solo booth for Larry Towell and I was nice to catch up with old friends. I could have definitely picked up my game and spoke to more new people, but for my first art fair I think I did well. I met some representatives from the Canadian Embassies who were looking to purchase Canadian art to put in embassies all over the world and I thought that was a pretty neat job and definitely something to look into for the future. 

There was so much to see and even though I was at the fair for 6 days, I barely got through each booth. It was mainly galleries from Toronto and Canada but the director told us that she was hoping to make it more international next year. There were even a few galleries from Tel Aviv, Paris, London, and New York but hopefully next year will include more. You could see anything from a sculpture of a life-sized horse that costed so much it could send me to England for my Master’s Degree and I’d still have a little left over, to drawings of mystical and creepy dreams of burning houses from D3 Gallery.

Here are some of my favourites from the fair:

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Top to Bottom: “Countercurrent Flow Big” by Marck from Gallerie de Bellefeuille, Période Supplémentaire” by Serge Lemoyne from Yves LaRoche Gallery (who also showed some Clet graffiti pieces referenced in my other post), unknown gallery shot, “Un morceau de dehors” by Karine Payette, unknown gallery shot, Aggregation series by Kwang-Young Chun from Landau Fine Art, “Dreams of awakening here in this brightness” by Sherri Hay from Christopher Cutts Gallery, “À distance perdue” by Karine Payette, “Boy Falling” by Vivian Kahra from Susan Eley Fine Art

I was absolutely obsessed with “Countercurrent Flow Big” at Gallerie de Bellefeuille and pretty much stopped by each day on my lunch break just to watch the performance piece. I also really loved “Bathing in Bliss” by Joshua Jenson-Nagle at Bau-Xi Gallery. I didn’t get a good picture of it due to the plexiglass it was mounted on but I will insert one here:

"Bathing in Bliss" by Joshua Jensen-Nagle, Bau-Xi Gallery

“Bathing in Bliss” by Joshua Jensen-Nagle, Bau-Xi Gallery

Many people asked me how I got this opportunity and honestly, it was a mixture of luck and knowing the right people. I met with Emilia Ziemba who at the time was working at Red Head Gallery in Toronto a couple years ago and she remembered me and suggested me for the position.

It was such an experience and hopefully next year I will be able to do it all over again, if not working then definitely will come visit the fair if I’m not in school in London yet…but hopefully fingers crossed I will be in England…

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Contemporary Art

Wall to Wall x Gallery 44

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Hugh McBride’s “Three Graces”, 2014

From now until December 13th, Gallery 44 is hosting their annual Wall to Wall exhibition and sale of artwork by members (and their also celebrating their 35th anniversary!) Their opening/holiday party was on the 4th and I’m so sad I missed it. Interning at G44 these past few months has been a memorable experience and it’s always exciting to see the artwork members create. Unframed and framed photos are reasonably priced and a portion of funds raised support Gallery 44’s education and exhibitions programming.

Located in the 401 Richmond Building at Spadina and Richmond for those in Toronto.

Lot’s of work has gone into this exhibition so come visit and start your holiday shopping early…-ish haha

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Contemporary Art, Culture

Jon Rafman x 9 Eyes

Earlier this month I had the privilege to volunteer (aka get a free ticket) to Power Ball which is The Power Plant‘s yearly fundraiser which exhibited works by Christine Davis, CONFETTISYSTEM, and Jon Rafman, with performances by Oli Sorenson and Naomi Kashiwagi, and a BYOB (Bring Your Own Beamer) exhibit. While in the Jon Rafman gallery I actually saw him, and while I didn’t speak to him the other volunteer I was with had an awkward run in with him. She didn’t know who he was and he was carrying around a little taxidermy dog that was attached to one of his pieces (he basically tore it off- fur still attached to the mattress haha) and reminded him he was not allowed to touch the artwork. He responded with a posh, “I’m allowed to…I’m the artist”.

His installations at Power Ball examined the effects of digital media on individual consciousness and social and cultural memory while exploring troll caves and how some online users arrange their lives for maximum internet-use. While I thought I thought this installation was interesting, I think his The Nine Eyes of Google Street View series is eye opening and reveals bizarre intimacies of our society in such a beautiful way by using the images captured by Google Street View cameras around the world.

Here are some of my favourites as well as some pictures I took from Power Ball:

john rafman 9 eyes21 john rafman 9 eyes20 john rafman 9 eyes19 john rafman 9 eyes18 john rafman 9 eyes17 john rafman 9 eyes16john rafman 9 eyes 12 john rafman 9 eyes10 john rafman 9 eyes 11john rafman 9 eyes 8 john rafman 9 eyes7 john rafman 9 eyes6 john rafman 9 eyes5john rafman 9 eyes 2john rafman 9 eyes 22

And his works from Power Ball:

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Jon Rafman himself

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Me on the Troll Throne

Me on the Troll Throne

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Contemporary Art

OCADU Grad Exhibition

This past weekend was OCADU’s Grad Exhibition and I’m lucky enough to be friends with a few of the graduating artists. I went on opening night so it was a little packed but it was amazing to seeing the graduates’ thesis projects. It kind of made me reminiscent of high school and regret my life choices like majoring in Communication Studies in university…but let’s be honest, I don’t think I could top the talent of this graduating class. Here are some of my favourites:

Katherine Curci

katherine curci

Some pieces that weren’t included in the show, but wanted to include:

Life Sized Self-Portrait

“Shell” (2014), graphite on paper, 160″x 75″

Florence

“Adaptation” (2013), photograph apart of series from Florence,  (that’s me by the way!)

I’ve been best friends and soul sisters with Katherine for almost 8 years now and it’s absolutely amazing watching her flourish as an artist. She’s definitely one to watch and so multi-talented working in ink, pencil, watercolour and also a great makeup artist. I had a serious #1 fan moment when a few guests came up to her and said her thesis project was one of their favourites from the entire exhibition. This particular piece is of her beautiful mom, Roxanne (who’s also a student at OCADU and seriously a fantastic artist) and I know how emotional and close this project was for both of them. I know she’ll ROCK whatever next in her books. Congrats on all the hard work!!! I can’t wait for my soon-to-be one-of-a-kind Katherine Curci original! You’ll soon be rich and famous and forget about little old me. 

Katherine Blaszczak

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Thesis

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Thesis detail

And the piece that started it all:

"Fragmented", Acrylic on Canvas, 12"x 12"

“Fragmented”, Acrylic on Canvas, 12″x 12″

Kathy is one of my friends I met in Florence while she lived with Katherine Curci last year. Knowing the amount of blood, sweat, and tears throughout this thesis project makes me appreciate this piece all so much more. As a HUGE hit at the exhibit, bloggers such as daniesque and sparkstwins began raving about her painting have already proven to be some of her biggest fans after seeing her painting (including me!). I mean…diamonds are a girl’s best friend, right? So proud of you Kathy! Congrats!!!

Tania Santer

Tania combines silverpoint drawing and time-based media to depict powerful images of the mental and physical struggle women face in the 21st century. I can’t imagine how many hours she put into choreographing drawings. Just mindblown.

Camille Jodoin-Eng

jodoin-eng Light House - Detail - Jodoin-Eng

“Lighthouse”, Plastic, Wood, Electronic Components, 1 ft x 1 ft x 5 ft

jodoin-eng Cosmography - Install View 2

Thesis 2013-2014 Cosmography

jodoin-engSatellite - Jodoin-Eng

“Satellite”, Plastic, Steel, Electronic Components, 4 ft x 4 ft x 2 ft

jodoin-eng Constellation Box - Detail - Jodoin-Eng

“Constellation Box (Detail)”, Plastic, Steel, Electronic Components, 1 ft x 1 ft x 1 ft

I literally stopped in my tracks and had to turn around to go into the room that showed Jodoin-Eng’s pieces. The entire room was dedicated to her project and you could tell everyone else in the room was just so fascinated by the mirrored lights as much as I was.

Iskuhi Avagyan

"Supta Kurmasana" Oil on Mylar 42"x 42"

“Supta Kurmasana” Oil on Mylar 42″x 42″

"Marichyasana B", Oil on Mylar, 42" x 42"

“Marichyasana B”, Oil on Mylar, 42″ x 42″

"Bhuja Pidasana", Oil on Mylar, 42"x 42"

“Bhuja Pidasana”, Oil on Mylar, 42″x 42″

There’s something about her thesis pieces that constantly drew me to them. As I’d walk through this particular exhibit I would just find myself in front of them and waiting patiently for guests to take good pictures of her work (which is much deserved!). I love the transparency, tension, and anonymity of the figures in the pieces.

A BIG congratulations to OCADU’s graduating class of 2014! You are all so crazy talented and I’m so excited to see what you guys have up your sleeve next. You’ll be hearing from me again when I’m collecting your art in a few years (hopefully fingers crossed)!

 

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Contemporary Art

Paper Cutting//Ed Pien

Anyone who knows me knows I love myself a little Ed Pien. I first encountered the Canadian artist on a visit to the Art Gallery of Ontario about 5 years ago and I still absolutely love his work; he works in a range of medium, from photography to public installations to illustrations. There’s something really haunting but also delicate about his art that draws me in. His larger-than-life papercut pieces and installations are full of mystery that makes you wonder who the silhouetted figures are and why the heck they’re alone in the forest. Pien uses trees as a recurring motif in his cuts, playing with light, texture, depth, and space to portray an alluring and delicate experience. It’s definitely something you don’t see everyday…you just can’t help but gape in awe anytime you see one of his pieces in front of you.

He’s worth checking out!

Deep Water (2001) via Ed Pien

Deep Water (2001) via Ed Pien

Night Gathering (2005) via Ed Pien

Night Gathering (2005) via Ed Pien

A Forest of Thorns (2007) via via Ed Pien

A Forest of Thorns (2007) via Ed Pien

Giant Pine via via Ed Pien

Giant Pine via Ed Pien

Witching Hour (2007) via Ed Pien

Witching Hour (2007) via Ed Pien

Reckoning (2010) via Ed Pien

Reckoning (2010) via Ed Pien

Promise of Solitude (2005) via via Ed Pien

Promise of Solitude (2005) via Ed Pien

Night Gathering (2005) via Ed Pien

Night Gathering (2005) via Ed Pien

Invisible (2008) via via Ed Pien

Invisible (2008) via Ed Pien

 

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