Current Exhibitions

In Brief:

RSGC Art Graduates’ Exhibition| May 21 – June 10, 2017 | Third Floor Hallway Galleries | Free

tdsbCREATES Art & Film Exhibition | May 4 – 18, 2017 | First and Third Floor Hallway Galleries, Flex Studio 107 & 109 | Free

MINDSET 2017 | May 1 – 26, 2017 | Second Floor Hallway Galleries | Free

2Fik: His and Other Stories | April 6 – June 4, 2017 | Koffler Gallery | Free

Signals & Sentiments | April 27 – June 4, 2017 | Critical Distance and Artscape Youngplace Stairwells | Free

Mountainburger | April – August, 2017 | Mural on Shaw Street | Free

Upcoming Exhibitions:

I’m So Glad She Found Me | May 28 – June 10, 2017 | Second Floor Hallway Galleries | Free

At the Hallway Galleries

With over 9,350 square feet of space, the Hallway Galleries occupy the hallways and stairwells of Artscape Youngplace, on (and between) three floors of this beautiful 100-year-old building. Open seven days a week with free admission. Rent the Hallway Galleries for art exhibitions.

Third Floor Hallway Galleries

RSGC Art Graduates’ Exhibition 

May 21 – June 10, 2017 | Third Floor Hallway Galleries

Hours: Open Daily 8 AM – 8 PM

Opening Reception: Wednesday, May 24 | 7:00 – 9:00 PM | FREE


“Where do we come from? What are we? Where are we going?” Paul Gauguin

The works, which were created by the Grade 12 art students at Royal St George’s College, are based on the exploration on the themes of memory, sanctuary, conflict, work, relationships, and growing up. Students try to answer Gauguin’s questions that were introduced to them at the beginning of the year.

The show includes, drawing, painting, mixed-media, printmaking, collage, and photography.

Second Floor Hallway Galleries


May 1 – 26, 2017 | Second Floor Hallway Galleries

Hours: Open Daily 8 AM – 8 PM

Opening Reception: Thursday, May 4, 2017 | 6:00 – 9:00 PM | FREE

Image: Brad Necyk – Just A Hard Rain

This exhibition examines how individual and collective experiences of trauma, injury, illness, isolation, recovery, and adjustment are processed; aided and abetted by personal and interpersonal beliefs and behaviours.

ARTISTS: Teresa Ascenção, Stephanie Avery, Marco Buonocore, Cara Cole, Heather Fulton, Sheldon Laporte, Esmond Lee, Barbara Mann, Jaye Martin, Anita McKernan, Brad Necyk, Julie Riemersma, Annette Seip, Tanya Louise Workman

Curator: Claudette Abrams

Advisors: Jeff Bierk, Yuula Benivolski & Tanya Louise Workman

At The Koffler Gallery

 2Fik: His and Other Stories

April 6 – June 4, 2017 | Suite 104-105

Hours: Tuesday to Friday 12 PM – 6 PM, Saturday & Sunday 11 AM – 5 PM, Closed Mondays & Statutory Holidays

Opening Reception: Thursday, April 6, 2017 | 6:00 – 9:00 PM | FREE


Assuming the multiple roles of artistic director, photographer and model, Montreal-based artist 2Fik stages elaborate tableaux in which he single-handedly plays a cast of characters, both male and female, often re-enacting familiar compositions derived from famous paintings. His photo and performance based works toy with reality and dismantle stereotypes, destabilizing the viewer’s assumed points of reference.

As 2Fik’s first solo show in Toronto, His and Other Stories brings together three recent bodies of work that examine cultural legacies as well as individual and national identity constructs. The centrepieces of the exhibition are his latest compositions that dismantle and reconfigure allegorical representations of nationhood reflected in several historic paintings.

Raising irreverent questions, these satirical reinterpretations subvert the absolutes of nationalistic discourses opening them up to the complex and pluralistic realities of today.

A Primary Exhibition of the 2017 Scotiabank CONTACT Photography Festival.

At Critical Distance

Signals & Sentiments

April 27 – June 4, 2017 | Critical Distance (Suite 302) and Artscape Youngplace Stairwells

Hours: Gallery hours are Friday-Sunday from 12-5 pm, and by chance and appointment. Stairwells open every day from 8 am-8 pm. Closed Statutory Holidays.

Opening Reception: Thursday, April 27 | 6:00-9:00 PM | Free

left: Sebastian Benitez, Untitled (from the series Not This Way Either), 2012; right: Josée Pedneault, NÆVUS, 2013–in progress




Critical Distance is pleased to present Signals & Sentiments, a two-part exhibition that examines how gesture functions as a mechanism for the production of identity. In CDCC’s third floor gallery, the exhibition takes the form of an intimate group show for which five Toronto-based artists, Sebastián Benítez, Petar Boskovic, Shelby Fenlon, Maxwell Hyett and Mickey Mackenna, consider the inner workings of the gestural urge. Placing a varied selection of sculpture and photo-based objects in context with each other, exhibition curator Katelyn Gallucci investigates how seemingly divergent artistic gestures might fundamentally derive from inadequacies of language, disposition, desire, and whim.

In Artscape Youngplace’s expansive stairwell spaces, three site-specific installations address the more exterior and transitory dynamics of gesture. Extending themes of self-discovery, the relationship between perception and memory, and the search for emotional connection through time, these encompassing spatial interventions by Maggie Groat and Jimmy Limit (working in collaboration), Karen Henderson, and Josée Pedneault condition the viewer’s bodily response as much as they embody gestural acts and intentions themselves.

Signals & Sentiments is a Featured Exhibition of the 2017 Scotiabank CONTACT Photography Festival.

About the Artists and Curator

Sebastián Benítez is a Toronto-based artist and curator born in Caracas, Venezuela. His practice explores issues of memory and identity through photography and installation. Petar Boskovic is a photo-based artist currently residing in Toronto. Through generating imagery that inhabits the absurd and intuitive elements of urban space, his practice examines the duality of presence and vacancy. Shelby Fenlon is a Toronto-based artist whose process-driven practice considers the cultural expectations of the photograph, its material constraints, and how they relate to the female body. Maxwell Hyett is a Toronto-based artist whose practice is concerned with how information is made, kept, retrieved, and translated. Mickey Mackenna is a Toronto-based artist who uses gesture and happenstance to manipulate found and industrial materials that provoke relational narratives. 

Maggie Groat and Jimmy Limit are interdisciplinary artists based in St. Catharines, Ontario. At the intersection of their individual practices lie mutual fascinations with gardens, the recontextualization of materials, and futurist/dytopic narratives. Karen Henderson is a Toronto artist whose photo-based practice is focused on the relationships between presence, time, and space. Through her “continuous environments”, she explores the mechanisms of photography and the boundaries of perception. Josée Pedneault is a Montreal-based artist whose crossdisciplinary practice poetically navigates the delicate structures and connections that exist between the world and herself. 

Exhibition curator Katelyn Gallucci is a photo-based artist currently living in Toronto. She is interested in identity and the psychology of selfhood through the fluidity of representation. 

Complete profiles for all of the artists and the curator will be posted to our website soon.


Suite 302 at Artscape Youngplace | 180 Shaw Street | Toronto | Ontario | M6J 2W5

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Critical Distance is a not-for-profit initiative and space devoted to the support and advancement of curatorial practice in Toronto, Canada, and beyond. Part gallery and publisher, part professional association and community, CDCC is an open platform for diverse curatorial practices and perspectives, and a forum for ideas on curating and exhibition-making as ways to engage and inform audiences from all walks of life. For more info, visit our website or social media pages, linked above.

CDCC thanks Artscape Youngplace for their generous support of the stairwell installations. 


May – August, 2017 | Billboard on Shaw Street

Hours: Gallery hours are Friday-Sunday from 12-5 pm, and by chance and appointment. Closed Statutory Holidays.

Opening Reception: Thursday, April 27 | 6:00-9:00 PM | Free

Critical Distance is pleased to announce the selected artwork for the Spring 2017 Billboard on Shaw, a partnership with Artscape Youngplace through which we are providing opportunities for curators and artists to present large format printed artworks for the freestanding mural/billboard outside our building on Shaw Street.

Mountainburger is an 8-foot image by Kitchener-based artist Aislinn Thomas to be unveiled this week in conjunction with our opening for Signals & Sentiments. (Note above image is placeholder. We will update this post with the actual image and a description after April 27th).

Mountainburger will be on view outside Youngplace through August 2017. We wish to congratulate Aislinn Thomas, and to extend sincere thanks to the many curators and artists whose thoughtful proposals for our spring billboard were a pleasure to consider. Stay tuned for new opportunities to submit proposals again in the future.

Please join us to celebrate the new billboard on Thursday, April 27th from 6–9 pm
A reception for artist will take place in our third floor gallery at Youngplace and will coincide with the opening of Signals & Sentiments, our Featured Exhibition for the 2017 Scotiabank CONTACT Photography Festival.

Critical Distance Centre for Curators (CDCC)
Suite 302, Artscape Youngplace, 180 Shaw Street, Toronto, ON M6J 2W5
See Google map of location

About the Artist

Aislinn Thomas is an interdisciplinary artist whose practice includes video, performance, installation and text-based work. She culls material from everyday experiences and relationships, exploring themes of vulnerability, empathy, possibility and failure. Aislinn is a recent graduate of the University of Waterloo MFA program and earned a BA in Studio Art from the University of Guelph. Her work has been exhibited nationally and internationally and is the recipient of several grants and awards including a C.D. Howe Scholarship for Arts and Design, a Social Science and Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada Masters Scholarship, and grants from the Ontario Arts Council and the Canada Council for the Arts. Aislinn currently lives and works in Kitchener, Ontario, Canada.

Critical Distance thanks Artscape Youngplace for their generous support of this project.



Upcoming Exhibitions

I’m So Glad She Found Me

May 28 – June 10, 2017 | Second Floor Hallway Galleries

Hours: Open Daily 8 AM – 8 PM

Artwork by Tanya Bruce

Welcome to a brave new world where curiosity, imagination and some googlie eyes can unlock the hidden potential in everything!

I’m So Glad She Found Me is an art show dedicated to seeing the natural beauty in our constantly changing environment. Humans are drawn to nature and see the beauty in evolution. When leaves fall from the trees, we press them in books. When a boulder breaks down, people start rock collections. Sea shells are treasures, tree stumps are stools and branches fill modern day vases. As one season draws to a close its departure isn’t seen as a failure but as a simple farewell.

Unfortunately, we don’t view our changing cities in the same kind of light. When our creations start to break down or break apart we call those disregarded pieces garbage, gather them up and banish them to a landfill far, far away. Asphalt breaks away from the road, send it to the landfill. Plastic shards from broken containers, metal from cars, shingles from roofs, all garbage and all without value. But I disagree.

I believe there is value in what we build and equal value in what it becomes when left to the elements. It is not a failure when the original purpose is over, it is evolution, the next step in the symbiotic relationship between humans and nature. Over the past 8 years I have collected these pieces to remind us that although cities are built by us, they are living entities beyond our control and sometimes garbage is anything but.

Email: urbanprairie@gmail.com

Instagram: The_Good_Canadian  #GEart17