Usually the curator for other artists’ shows, ALLEN SHUGAR was proud to present his own work at Urban Gallery (400 Queen East, Toronto) last night for the opening of his month-long show titled SHIFTING LIGHT. Allen is joined here by gallery director, Calvin Hambrook (below L) in front of his title artwork (lower photo) Each stunning piece illustrates how light shifts when viewing from different vantage points and I particularly liked the play of light on leaves in this painting (below) appropriately titled “Goldleaf”.In fact, lots of gallery visitors loved these works – within half an hour of opening the gallery doors, the room was packed with Allen’s friends, family and fans. I managed to grab Allen for a quick interview before the party was in full swing and asked him about his show….
As you can tell, Allen is very passionate about art, the painter’s process and working as the curator for Urban Gallery. Below, Allen greeted many friends who came out to support him…….and several fellow artists dropped by including Grace Dam (below) whose shows Allen has previously curated……and Romi Samuels (below) who hopes to bring a show of her work to the gallery in the near future.Here’s award-winning artist Erik Chong (below with his wife, Jeannette) whose shows Allen has also curated over the past few years.Allen showcased 3 smaller framed pieces (reverse painting on glass) and my favourite one was quickly snapped up by this lovely lady. So many gorgeous pieces…you must visit the gallery to see for yourself! And of course, the refreshments were works of art, too, courtesy of Urban Source Catering…
Colour, light, the cycles of nature (so extreme in our climate), the beauty of the human form – these are the subjects that inspire my paintings. Naturalistic representation has never much interested me. I take, rather, a transformative approach that seeks to capture a purely subjective experience, a state of mind, an evanescent thought. In this respect, my work owes as much to musical and literary influences as it does to visual stimuli. My aim is to suggest the extraordinary that lies just beneath the surface of the ordinary. – Allen Shugar