Yesterday, the gallery was hopping with art lovers, friends and family of the seven featured artists in the August show HOT TOWN, SUMMER IN THE CITY which runs all month at Urban Gallery, 400 Queen St East, Toronto.The talented artists whose work covers the gallery walls are: Kris Bovenizer, Kirk Sutherland, Aisha Chiguichon, Moses Salihou, Michelle Hudson, Liliana Vera and Andres Valencia Zava, most of whom were present yesterday at the official launch reception.
Below, contemporary artist Moses Salihou, (originally from Cameroon, now living in Toronto) and his lovely wife Catherine pose in front of 2 of his 3 canvases…and below, gallery regular Kirk Sutherland whose work is represented in more than 15 int’l galleries, proudly showed off his “Metropolitan Panorama”…and here’s self-taught contemporary artist Michelle Hudson with her 3 colourful pieces painted on Yupo paper:Kris Bovenizer, who has previously exhibited at the gallery, also teaches traditional print-making, showed off 2 of her hand-pulled relief prints…Aisha Chiguichon came to the gallery ready to party and shared a toast with one of the gallery’s photographers. She’s self-taught and her colour palette has been inspired by her childhood in the Caribbean. Cheers, Aisha!Unfortunately, I was not able to stay to meet up with Liliana or Andres but their works were exciting and stimulating, and very evocative of their own personal summer experiences. Their works are below, in order as mentioned:
The show runs until the end of August so if you’d like to enjoy viewing these paintings in air conditioned comfort, visit the gallery’s website for hours and directions: www.UrbanGallery.ca
Be prepared to leave hungry when you visit URBAN GALLERY‘s yummy “ART OF FOOD” group show that runs throughout August. The paintings are simply delicious with works featuring both sweet and savory images and some that are even thought-provoking such as Judy Sherman‘s collection of farmyard beasties striking back against their potential farm-to-plate future (below)
Anushka Deshpande‘s art is called “quilling” which is sculpting and rolling paper to create stunning representations of her subjects, like these (I love the tropical cocktail).Anushka is pictured above (centre) with (L to R) her husband, a friend, Calvin Hambrook (gallery director) and Allen Shugar (gallery curator).
Lisa Hemeon is best known for her evocative seascapes and you can imagine all the fishies swimming just under the surface, waiting for lines to be cast with big juicy baits. Look closely and imagine dinner just below Lisa’s waves…
Aisha Chiguichon brought wine…or at least a lovely painting of wine…to go with the colourful forks skewering treats for gallery visitors! Aisha is a self-taught visual artist and it’s obvious she delights in her inspirations for this show.URBAN SOURCE CATERING partnered with the gallery to present some real “art” of food – just look at this delicious spread for gallery visitors to enjoy and admire, prepared by executive chef Lyndon Wiebe.One of Urban Catering’s previous employees, Valerie J. McMurray, is also an artist of some note. Here is her triptych titled “Spanish Lemons” – you can almost smell the fragrance emanating from her juicy, ripe fruit.Janna Kroupko has previously exhibited at Urban Gallery, both in group and solo shows. Here, her delightful “Cherries” sits elegantly above the buffet table. She’s also an accomplished textile artist and weaver.Urban Catering’s chef, Lyndon Wiebe, loves photography as well as food and has previously exhibited his photos from tours around the world (Lyndon is one of the chefs featured in the tv series “Chefs Run Wild”). Here he shares a couple of his storefront photos…Popular Toronto artist Kirk Sutherland brought three distinctly different artworks to the show, all featuring his signature colourful imaginative energy. With titles such as Theatre of Saccharine and Confectionery Planetarium, Kirk’s work fits perfectly into this group show.Even NEWZ4U editor KJ Mullins was entranced by Kirk’s work! (below)Gallery visitors enjoyed the art, the food and the chance to meet and chat with so many artists…ART OF FOOD runs until August 31st at Urban Gallery, 400 Queen St East, Toronto (1 block E of Parliament). For directions and gallery hours visit: www.urbangallery.ca
Yesterday, URBAN GALLERY (400 Queen St East, Toronto) opened the doors to officially launch their summer group show O CANADA (runs until July 29), featuring 17 Canadian artists with diverse cultural backgrounds and artistic styles whose individual visions of Canada celebrate the country’s 150th anniversary. Come take a virtual walk with me thru the gallery….
The stunning image by Erik Chong features the lyrics to the Canadian national anthem in all three official languages and Erik posed proudly in front of his painting, “Beautiful Day” (below)Celebrated wildlife photographer Linda Langerak has 3 gorgeous photos of BC creatures in the show (below) – I love the bald eagles…Kirk Sutherland created the frame around his “Terra Nova” painting from found architectural salvage featuring maple leaf designs. How clever is that?Caught this cool shot and realized afterwards that it was all about the stripes….LOL!Pauline Langmaid (below) drove in all the way from Bracebridge to showcase her glorious abstract landscapes…or should I say “lake-scapes”? Pauline’s two paintings proved very popular with gallery visitors…Another popular image was celebrity chef & photographer Lyndon Wiebe‘s photo of a windswept view of Port Hope (below). Lyndon brought out an extended print showing more of the scene – located to the west of the town where housing development meets grassland. Film industry professional and accomplished photographic artist Karen Silver chose a chilly winter scene of a Toronto park and a lonely bicycle. Now that’s one seat I would not like to sit on…LOL!Kris Bovenizer (below centre) talks with a guest about her two acrylic on canvas works…the sea-faring image on the left is now a label on bottles of a limited edition maple syrup bottled for a Canadian business leader (as Canada150 corporate gifts for his clients). How cool..and congrats to Kris. And Kris posed with fellow artist Kirk Sutherland and gallery owner Calvin Hambrook (below)Manije Sabet Sarvestani (below) brought two oil-on-canvas works: “Canada Day in Quebec City” (on left) and “Thornhill Festival” (on right). The soft-spoken artist let her work do all the talking and these certainly announced her talent loudly!Kent Bridges was the first artist to score a “red dot” (a sale) for his “Life in a Northern Town”. Here he is (below left in red) with purchaser and fan David Currah of Toronto’s Fife House. Congrats to Kent who was all smiles as he celebrated the sale.Ronald Regamey uses a technique known as “quilling” to create beautiful 3 dimensional paper & glue artwork. Here’s Ronald being snapped by Calvin in front of his latest piece titled “Alive”.…Ronald had a number of family and friends congratulating him on his gallery appearance – they were so animated and excited it was hard to get them all to stand still for a photo…LOLGallery curator Allen Shugar and poet/artist Brenda Clews also met under Ronald’s work….…while Linda Langerak snapped away with Kirk (below)The delicious food was catered by Urban Source Catering and the platters were themselves works of art.Colin Nun (below left) who recently had his own successful solo show at Urban Gallery, shares his thoughts on his work “Canada” with KJ Mullins (below R) editor of NEWZ4U.caIn fact, a lot of guests remarked on the uniqueness of Colin’s oil-on-canvas typographical and topographical view of the country.Snapd newspaper photographer Gianmarco dropped by to cover the event and got busy snapping the artists…I managed to grab a quick pic of Joan Andal Romano with her “True North” mixed media on canvas. So many intricate details to view, it must have taken her many hours to create.Several artists were unable to attend, 3 delivered beautiful Canadian landscapes – Stacey Kinder‘s “Light” featuring a stand of trees in the fall, Christine Marin‘s “On Bear Trap Road” (2nd pic) and Grace Dam‘s snowy “Canmore” (3rd pic)…...and Aisha Chiguichon was represented by this provocative acrylic on canvas titled “Stereotypes”Victoria General attended but the shy artist preferred to let her work take centre stage and declined a photo. Victoria works in charcoal on paper – here are “We Need a Bit More Sand, I Think” (upper) and “I’ll Have to Call You Back” (lower).The reception drew many art lovers and more red dots should be appearing alongside these Canada150 artful tributes. I hope you get a chance to visit in person and support the talented artists at Urban Gallery.
Urban Gallery is also available for rental if you wish to host your corporate or private party, reception or even a sit-down dinner with delicious food & refreshments courtesy of Urban Source Catering. Visit the website for details.
Last Friday evening, I had the pleasure of visiting a charming new storefront gallery along St. Clair West in Toronto – ARTUSIASM GALLERY – owned by Carlos Sa Rodrigues and his talented artist wife, Tanzina Aminpictured below. Their current show, Life in the City, runs until May 1st.
Photo courtesy Linda Langerak
Accomplished photographer and artist Linda Langerak invited me to the opening soiree and I was so pleased I accepted – what an exciting array of art from established and emerging local artists, and I was thrilled to find a number of pieces by a favourite painter friend, Kirk Sutherland (below).Owner Tanzina is also quite the talent with a paintbrush – I really like her colourful exotic portraits (below)Another artist friend, Aisha Chiguichon, was also exhibiting there with 2 pieces, and she was having fun posing for friends just like a red carpet veteran!…even Linda started snapping away at all the work by fellow artists (below)I managed to round up several artists for a photo call…look at all those happy smiling faces!The general consensus from the artists was that they all felt respected and well cared for by Carlos and Tanzina who even built a special access ramp for wheelchair-bound artist H. Jordyn Taylor, pictured below with her painting “Below the Stains of Time”. The usually shy Jordyn had a blast meeting lots of new fans of her work.Another lovely painting I discovered was “Don’t Tell Me to Smile” by Helena Napal, pictured below with her work.There were a couple of really fine cityscapes featuring the iconic CN Tower……and lots of familiar street scenes and abstracts, too.So many local Toronto artists are showcased in this show and I strongly recommend you drop by Artusiasm Gallery located at 1684 St Clair West, Toronto before the show closes on May 1. You can’t miss the gallery – just look for this stunning streetcar painting in the window!Congratulations to Tanzina, Carlos and all the artists for a wonderful opening! Check their website for details: www.artusiasm.com