Tag Archives: Toronto gallery openings

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TORONTO ARTIST JUDITH McKAY UNVEILS SOLO SHOW “HIRAETH” @ URBAN GALLERY

Running throughout the month of November, Hiraeth is thesolo show featuring stunning and colourful contemporary landscapes and “tree portraits” presented by JUDITH McKAY at Urban Gallery, 400 Queen St East in downtown Toronto.20181110_132357The Toronto artist explores fantasy as a means of finding peace in a frenetic world. Trees are her allegory for the endless pursuits of modern life: rooted, yet branching out to reach the sky.20181110_132237

20181110_132301Largely self-taught, Judith’s style is free-flowing. She uses both thick impasto and fluid colour to achieve movement and boldness. Fearless about colour, she uses a vibrant palette, applying interference and iridescent paints to achieve surrealistic effects. Her style is constantly evolving via frequent participation in workshops and exhibitions, as well as studying the techniques of other artists.

Judith (below L) was joined by her husband Rob Sylvester (below R), and her daughter Shannon (below C) came in all the way from New Jersey to celebrate the big opening reception!20181110_134458The gallery looked bright and welcoming on such a grey Saturday – and soon the guests started pouring in, admiring all the canvases….20181110_144400 20181110_142700 20181110_141442

20181110_132308 20181110_132620 20181110_145817ARTIST’s STATEMENT: Hiraeth (here-eye-th) is a Celtic word that means a wistful longing for a place to where you cannot return. A place that perhaps never was. The desire for a sense of peace and belonging are emotions I seek to capture in my work. Such desire can often turn to frustration when the real world doesn’t live up to fantasy, and so I depict trees, firmly rooted yet dancing in the wind, to symbolize resiliency as we continue to seek our true home, despite adversity. For this exhibition, I chose a vibrant palette and the use of high gloss medium and reflective paints to create an ethereal effect, as if awakening from a beautiful dream that quickly evaporates and eludes us. The pieces selected for display are meant to truly express what Hiraeth means to me.   ~ Judith McKay

I had the opportunity of chatting briefly with Judith prior to opening the doors of the gallery and she kindly shared with me her process and inspirations, especially for this collection….

If you would like to see Judith’s gorgeous, lush paintings, visit www.urbangallery.ca for gallery hours and directions, and follow Judith on her Instagram account: @judithmckayart

Hiraeth runs now until Nov. 30th at Urban Gallery, 400 Queen St East, Toronto.

Thank you for supporting Canadian artists!20181110_132455

 

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URBAN GALLERY HOSTS ANNUAL CENTENNIAL COLLEGE ART SHOW FOR 1ST YR “STUDIO ARTS” PROGRAM STUDENTS

Another wonderful afternoon of celebrating emerging Canadian artists took place at Toronto’s URBAN GALLERY as students from the Centennial College Studio Arts program opened their 2 week exhibition of multi-media works. FEVER showcases 25 emerging artists who explore the frontiers deeply submerged within the box.20170325_140117Under the guidance of Program Coordinator Prof. David McClyment, the 1st year students enjoyed their first professional gallery experience including meeting media and schmoozing with art fans, friends and family who came out to support them.  20170325_132850 20170325_132839 20170325_13294720170325_140615 20170325_133112 20170325_133128Here’s Prof. McClyment (below L) with some of his student artists…20170325_14054920170325_145227The unique and provocative work by Priscilla Koopman attracted many new fans, including Jenny Huddy, a visitor from Australia who is pictured (below R) with Priscilla (L)20170325_142837

20170325_133048 20170325_133053Here’s Matthew Oakes who proudly posed alongside his work….20170325_140325Another favourite was this unique double sided painting and clay sculpture self-portrait of Joy who attracted a lot of camera attention…20170325_132918 20170325_141531 20170325_14393220170325_143905And so many more wonderful artworks to view….20170325_140034 20170325_141102(0)Urban Gallery’s curator Allen Shugar (below R) chatted with the students….20170325_140059…and gallery director Calvin Hambrook (below R) greeted artists and their guests at the front door…20170325_140449The reception was catered by the adjoining UrbanSource Catering…oooh yummm!20170325_140409Congratulations to Prof. McClyment and his students on a great show…20170325_150158 20170325_140112You have until April 1st to visit and support these emerging stars of the Canadian art world. For gallery hours, visit:  www.urbangallery.caFever Image CENTENNIAL COLLEGE March 2017

POST SCRIPT: There was big excitement for one young artist – Dara Collins – when her beautiful mixed-media (with tiny twinkling lights) of a mountain scene called “Unrefined Illusions” was sold at the end of the opening reception. The buyer was art lover David Currah from Fife House.  Bravo and congratulations to Dara – pictured below with her artwork.UNREFINED ILLUSIONS Dara Collins -sold

 

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Toronto artist KIRK SUTHERLAND opens “Synesthesia” show at URBAN GALLERY

One of us…one of us! When I spoke this evening with artist KIRK SUTHERLAND at the opening of his show at URBAN GALLERY, I realized we had a lot in common – synesthesia. Apart from being the name of his show that runs until July 2nd at the gallery, both Kirk and I share a gifts that are very similar: he sees colours emanating from objects and beings while I see music in shapes and forms. Both “abilities” are referred to as synesthesia. Here, let Kirk explain……

20160602_180720 20160602_182041Sutherland’s work is influenced by the Abstract Expressionist Movement, Post-Painterly Abstraction and Lyrical Abstraction. He is also influenced consciously and subconsciously by his surroundings as well as the formal elements of art and the materials with which he creates. The two predominant elements in Sutherland’s work hinge between his keen sense of colour, and his use of pictorial space.

I feel my creative process bridges and somewhat amalgamates both intuitive, and conscious realities. My paintings do not imitate life, but perhaps harness the energy and the essence of life. I find myself channeling to a higher energy or light, in which the medium, the action, and the paintbrush are collectively an umbilical between the soul, the essence and that of the material world.   Kirk Sutherland

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PRIDE Toronto’s Marc Lalonde dropped in to offer congrats to Kirk for opening his show during PRIDE month and was given a quick lesson in art appreciation by the artist (above) and shared some thoughts about this year’s celebrations…..(below)

Gallery director Calvin Hambrook posed with Marc in front of Kirk’s paintings (below)…20160602_182441….and below, gallery curator Allen Shugar (L) and Wayne Abell of Urban Source Catering (R) flank frequent gallery visitor Stephen.20160602_191012Also visiting Kirk was talented artist and musician Laura Nashman (below)20160602_185251(0)Laura has an equally talented doggy companion, Ito, the wise Pomeranian, who has his own book of wisdom coming out soon. Maybe a book signing at the gallery in the near future???

Lots more guests dropped by to wish Kirk luck with his show, including fellow artist Erik Chong and his wife, Jeannette (lower pic)20160602_181931 20160602_184055I caught Erik enjoying the blueberry-kabobs (!) at the refreshment table….gotcha, LOL!20160602_182825Thanks to Edwin of Snapd newspaper for capturing the evening’s activities…and me!20160602_182454 …… but I really have to work on my selfie skills, dontcha think?20160602_184218Congrats to Kirk on such a wonderful turnout tonight. I look forward to seeing lots of red dots alongside his paintings by the end of the show. For gallery hours and more details, visit www.urbangallery.ca