Posts in Category: Art

Guest Spot at the Candid Call Centre

Played a minor role in artist Angel Chen’s project entitled, Candid Call Centre – where she connected the public with various professionals [especially in the legal and financial sectors] via a toll free call in line. I answered phones for an hour one day in my role as a former stock trader, which made for some anonymously meaningful chitchat. Thank you Angel for facilitating these crucial dialogues.

A quick quote from me in coverage by The Toronto Star.

Gift Shop Gift Shop at the AGO

I was super pleased to participate recently in Gift Shop Gift Shop, a store within a store at the AGO. The shop was part of the larger NOW: A Collaborative Project with Sean Martindale and Pascal Paquette, that ran from January 21-April 2, 2012. Special thanks to curator Katherine Dennis for her efforts in putting this dynamic show together.

General Admission: Not Everyone Can Afford It
AGO Ticket, white card stock, fineliners, ruler, plastic envelope
8 x 24 cm
2012

Being She at the Gladstone

Being She: The Culture of Women’s Health and Health Care Through the Lens of Wholeness
Gladstone Hotel – TORONTO

Featured Artists – Sarah Anne Johnson, Nina Levitt, Jane Martin, Meryl McMaster
[June 9 to August 1 2011]

Juried Artists - Dawn, James Azzopardi, Caitlin Baker, Laura Barrón, Jennifer Bedford, Carole Conde + Karl Beveridge, Talia Eylon, Jeane Fabb, Hoda Ghods, Michelle Gibson, Katherine Hartel, Sophie Hogan, Moe Laverty, Manon Lizé with Marianne Lizé-Dumoilin, Yalda Pashai-Fakhri, Pam Patterson + Leena Raudvee, Larry Rossignol, Jasper Savage, Elida Schogt with Guntar Kravis, Lillian Sly, Alison Snowball, Gaëtanne Sylvester, Elaine Whittaker, Access Alliance Multicultural Health and Community Services
[June 9 to 15 2011]

Curators: Deborah Wang and Christina Zeidler
Curatorial advisors: Sophie Hackett, Michelle Jacques, and Betty Ann Jordan

Judging by a capacity crowd for opening night at the Gladstone, an intimate and thoughtful curated tour a few days later, and a high volume of press coverage that has been dedicated to the show – something about Being She has struck a nerve, if not the central nervous system of women’s health itself.  Being held as part of centennial celebrations of Women’s College Hospital, the photo based exhibition is the first of its kind in the 100 year history of the health care institution.

My contribution as part of the juried show is dedicated to my mother Margie Snowball [1952-2010].  The series of photos was taken at Akropoli metro station in Athens.

Round & Round [She Goes] 2009

Often, the whole is illuminated only with the brilliance of hindsight.  Kinetic forces of motion and change redraw borders and reshape lines, in staunch defiance of definition until – natural or otherwise – a conclusion is reached.  My mom and I were in Athens when doctors discovered the tumour in her brain. With the forces at play, with our roles reversed, I mostly walked behind her.  It was the beginning of her end and the end of my beginning.

While the juried portion of the show has come down the featured artists works remain up on the third and fourth floors of the hotel through August 1.  Still, you can check out the Women’s College Hospital site for samples of all Featured and Juried artists’ works.  Below, you can click through to more extensive press coverage of the show.

York University – York prof featured in Toronto hospital’s centennial celebration [June 1]
Xtra – Artists revisit troubling history of women’s health in Canada [June 2]
National Post – Five things to do this week [June 3]
CBC Radio One – Here and Now – Interview with curator Deborah Wang [June 8]
Globe and Mail – One Hundred Years of Healing [June 9]

Inside Toronto – Exhibit celebrates centennial of Women’s College Hospital [June 12]

Sprung – Paintings by Shawn Skeir

SPRUNG
SkeirGallery – TORONTO
[June 2 to July 16 2011]
New works by Shawn Skeir


It’s official – SPRUNG done been sprang! With the lines between seasons blurring on a daily, even hourly, basis this year – the opening of Shawn Skeir’s latest show this past Thursday, provided a welcome dose of intensity and energy to all in attendance.  Meant to “explore and celebrate Spring’s invigorating spirit of rebirth” and the season’s “transition from dormancy to new found vigour”, Skeir employs a wide spectrum of colours and techniques in expressing this transitory phase.  From softer, natural hues in his Seascapes to full blown neon in his DNA and Abstract paintings, Parkdale’s master of colour is successful in getting his point across.  See for yourself at 1537A Queen Street West until July 16.

Abstract Expressionist New York – MoMA comes to the AGO

Abstract Expressionist New York: Masterpieces from the Museum of Modern Art
Art Gallery of Ontario – TORONTO
[May 28 to September 4 2011]

Works by William Baziotes, Louise Bourgeois, Rudy Burckhart, Harry Callahan, Paul Caponigro, Walter Chappell, Willem de Kooning, Robert Frank, Helen Frankenthaler, Arshile Gorky, Adolph Gottlieb, Philip Guston, Hans Hoffman, Franz Kline, Lee Krasner, Norman Lewis, Joan Mitchell, Robert Motherwell, Barnett Newman, Isamu Noguchi, Jackson Pollock, Richard Pousette-Dart, Ad Reinhardt, Mark Rothko, Aaron Siskind, David Smith, Clyfford Still
Curated by Anne Temkin, MoMA

This morning, I took in the members’ preview of the AGO’s latest exhibition Abstract Expressionist New York: Masterpieces from the Museum of Modern Art.  The show officially opens this Saturday, May 28.

It is hard to draw solid lines around the beginning and end of the Abstract Expressionism movement,  but it generally refers to a school of painting based out of New York City in the 1940s and 1950s. Curators credit art critic William Coates with first using the term and thereby naming the movement in 1946.  Wiki points out an earlier usage, in 1919, by German magazine Der Sturm as it referred to German Expressionism.  In this instance, presented along with the painters most usually associated with the era are several of their photography and sculpture contemporaries.

The exhibition leads with a quote from Jackson Pollock, not so arguably, the most well known of the featured artists.  Pollock is quoted as saying, “The modern painter cannot express this age, the airplane, the atom bomb, the radio, in the old forms of the Renaissance or any other past culture.  Each age finds its own techniques.”  Too true, Jackson, too true.  As it refers to the show in its entirety, these ‘techniques’ are wide ranging but with a great commonality in the boldness of scale and strokes, colour and composition.  Further to the definition of the movement, though pieces may have their roots in reality, the end results are abstracted and non-representational.

With at least six or seven galleries devoted to the show, visitors are invited to discover artists one or two at a time [with the exception of a few rooms]. This thoughtful setup allows for a quick, structured survey or a more ambling assessment.  Either way you choose to go about it, there are surprises around every corner.  On return visits [yes, worth repeat trips] I will be employing both techniques.

HIGHLIGHTS:
Arshile Gorky  [1904-1948] Garden in Sochi, 1943
Adolph Gottlieb [1903-1974] Flotsam at Noon [Imaginary Landscape], 1952
Willem de Kooning [1904-1997] Painting, 1948
Aaron Siskind [1903-1991] series of photographic prints
Isamu Noguchi [1904-1988] Work Sheet for Sculpture, 1946 Untitled, 1946
Franz Kline [1910-1962] Chief, 1950 White Forms, 1955 Le Gros, 1961
Lee Krasner [1908-1994] Gaea, 1966
Joan Mitchell [1925-1992] Ladybug, 1957
Jackson Pollock [1912-1956] No.1A, 1948 Echo No.25 1951, 1951, White Light, 1954
Mark Rothko [1903-1970] No.5/No.22, 1950 No.14 [Horizontals, White Over Darks], 1961
Ad Reinhardt [1913-1967] Abstract Painting, 1960-61
Philip Guston [1913-1980] Painting, 1954 Inhabiter, 1965

A few of these works can be previewed on the AGO website.