Friday, November 10, 2006

November art must-sees...

I've been to five or six fantastic art shows within the past week or so. Here are some recommendations based on this week's be sure to check them all out if you get the chance...

Dana Holst- Woebegone
Katharine Mulherin Art Projects, 1086 Queen Street West, Toronto. (416)537-8827
November 3-25, 2006.

An installation of 80 miniature oil paintings collectively titled Memento depicting portraits of tortured family pets, painted on the ivory veneer of discarded Victorian piano keys. From afar the single row of keys pinned to the wall, spanning the gallery circumference will eerily hint at tombstones and misplaced teeth. Up close, with the examination of a magnifying glass, the viewer will feel the pull of each animal's fated orbit, laid bare with lovingly applied brushstrokes.
Dark human acts directed at four legged things. In her latest body of work, Holst looks into the cracks of human socialization, those hiding rage and boredom, greed and egocentricity.

Fray- Millie Chen, June Clark, Hannah Claus, Rachel Echenberg, Doug Guilford, Katharine Rupert-Dazai, Sarah Maloney, Luanne Martineau, Kim Ouellette, Susan Detweiler, David Merritt, Allyson Mitchell, Nadia Myre, Liz Sargent. Curated by Sarah Quinton and Carolyn Bell Farrell.
Museum of Canada, 55 Centre Avenue, Toronto. (416)599-5321
July 13, 2006-January 7, 2007.

Organized by the Textile Museum of Canada and the Koffler Gallery, this major group show features work in a range of media, from sculpture to photography, by nineteen contemporary artists from Canada and the United States. The artists in Fray explore the implications of memory embodied in the design, materials and processes associated with textile traditions. Often dismantling existing objects, they subsequently reweave the constitutive threads to generate new forms of expression and new meanings.

Hand-Face-Body- Louise Lemieux Bérubé, Gontran Brennan, Ginger Brooks Takahashi, Kate Busby, Washboard Collective, Ying Gao, Sonia Haberstich, Filiz Klassen, Elana Kochman, Melissa Levin, John Krynick, Teresa Marcy, Hazel Meyer, Dorie Millerson, Allyson Mitchell, Janet Morton, Gordana Olujic Dosic, Vessna Perunovich, Christa Rowley, Lois Schklar, Auriane Sokoloski, Barbara Todd, Andrea Vander Kooij, Joy Walker, Ute Wolff
Gladstone Hotel, 1214 Queen Street West, Toronto. (416)531-4635
October 13-November 26, 2006.

Playing with the double meanings that "hand", "face" and "body" have in the context of textiles, curators Chris Mitchell and Helena Frei have assembled a diverse group of works whose makers range from established artists with impressive track records to students in the process of refining their focus.

With the intimate, personal overtones of textile, the act of using it as a medium suggests human presence. The participating artists speak of things as disparate as biblical lyrics, cancer and the fate of dryer lint. Whatever the subject, whether addressing issues of body image, sexual preference, intimacy or pornography, the work speaks of the body either explicitly or by inference. The pieces in hand-face-body are made with a gamut of textile techniques that range from cutting-edge to the ancient and labour-intensive. Some of the artists use technologies derived from industry - a multi-head embroidery machine, a computer-controlled loom, a knitting machine. Others work with manual techniques like needle lace, rug hooking, hand knitting and quilting. Still others use found materials - human hair, jigsaw puzzles, dryer lint and abandoned craft projects.

Unholy Alliance: Art+Fashion Meet Again Nick Cave, Lydia K, Clemencia Labin, Kent Monkman, Matthew Vescovo and Viktor & Rolf
Museum of Contemporary Canadian Art, 952 Queen Street West, Toronto. (416)935-3087
October 5-November 12, 2006.

Sponsored by PUMA Canada and MAC Cosmetics.
Unholy Alliance is part of the Alphabet City Festival 2006: TRASH.

Pictured: Dana Holst, Johnny, 2006.

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