Exhibitions

Current Exhibitions

In Brief:

COME TO MY WINDOW, 2016 | September 2016  – January, 2017 | Mural on Shaw Street | Free

Hillary Matt: Vitrine works 2016 | January 17 – 27, 2017 | First Floor Vitrines | Free

Farihah Aliyah Shah: Billie Said “Strange Fruit” | January 26 – February 11, 2017 | Second Floor Hallway Gallery | Free

Toronto Design Offsite Festival: Performance Design | January 16 – 28 | Third Floor South Hallway Gallery | Free

Toronto Design Offsite Festival: Models & Drawings | January 16 – 28 | Third Floor North Hallway Gallery | Free

Leopold Plotek: No Work, Nor Device, Nor Knowledge, Nor Wisdom | January 19 – March 19, 2017 | Koffler Gallery | Free

The Path, The Divide | January 19 – February 19, 2017 | Critical Distance | 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.

COME TO MY WINDOW, 2016 

September 2016  – January 2017 | Mural on Shaw Street by Steven Beckly | Curated by Matthew Kyba

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Critical Distance is pleased to present “8 x 8 at AYP” (aka the Artscape Youngplace mural on Shaw Street), featuring a large 8-foot square photograph by Toronto-based artist Steven Beckly. As project curator Matt Kyba writes, “In Come to My Window, a finger presses against a plane window waiting for a reciprocal touch…. Captured from the clouds and situated outside Artscape Youngplace, the billboard expresses a similar and unfulfilled wish: a desire for a public and global intimacy that stems from the ground and blooms from the individual. Against the backdrop of windows that adorn the repurposed school, the image becomes a public invitation to engage these openings as sites for social connection.”

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

First Floor Vitrines


Hillary Matt: Vitrine works 2016

January 17 – January 27, 2017 | Exhibition by Hillary Matt

Hours: Building Hours are everyday 8am-9pm except Statutory Holidays

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‘Vitrine works 2016’ is a series of four large-format prints installed inside the vitrines on the 1st floor of Artscape Youngplace by Hillary Matt. “I started this series with the intention of experimenting with several Photoshop features that are similar to techniques I apply with my hands when creating my work. I began using sketches, screen shots, and bits and pieces of images I have collected over time in my studio research as starting points. The result is this series of works that rest between me and the software that made them (possible).”

Hillary Matt (b. 1990, Peterborough, Canada) holds a BFA from the Ontario College of Art and Design University. Her process involves art-based research that follows phonetic, metaphoric, and poetic associations across pop culture. Visual content for often large-scale, flat work is generated from her findings. Matt recently had her first solo exhibition Chances and Dangers which featured a dozen new works that included painting, drawing, collage, plaster works, and found objects in Gallery A at The Robert McLaughlin Gallery (Oshawa, Canada). She has also shown her work with Carrier Arts Organization (Toronto, Canada). In the spring of 2017, Matt will begin a project surrounding a Hollywood film titled 3 Women, written and directed by Robert Altman in 1977. She will travel to the Palm Springs area of California, USA to search for and document two mural paintings created for the film.
The artist would like to thank and acknowledge Shannon Lea Doyle for organizing Vitrine works 2016.

For more information please visit hillarymatt.com

Second Floor Hallway Gallery


Farihah Aliyah Shah: Billie Said “Strange Fruit”

January 26 – February 11, 2017 | Exhibition by Farihah Aliyah Shah

Hours: Building Hours are everyday 8am-9pm except Statutory Holidays

Opening Reception: Thursday, January 26, 2017 | 6:30 PM – 9 PM | FREE

 

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The Centre for Emerging Artists & Designers at OCAD U congratulates Farihah Aliyah Shah on this photography exhibition as the recipient of the 2016 Artscape Youngplace Career Launcher prize.

Third Floor Hallway Gallery


Toronto Offsite Design Festival: Performance Design 

January 16 – January 28, 2017 | Exhibition in the Third Floor South Hallway Gallery

Hours: Building Hours are everyday 8am-9pm except Statutory Holidays

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Design for performance engages space, time, and object to communicate story and create imaginative possibility. This exhibit features five designers who are shaping contemporary performance in Toronto. My impulse for curating the exhibit was to introduce the wider design community to a field that integrates performativity into compositions of interior, graphic, furniture and architectural design while at the same time giving the work of my admired peers a thoughtful focus. My curatorial conversations with the designers have been an exploration of their collaborative processes, formal and conceptual concerns, and the meaning of Narrative in their work. These conversations and their variety informed the choice of work and it’s presentation. Together Lorenzo, Joanna, Rachel, Julie and Camellia’s work is a cross section showing the shape of performance design in this city.

Surrounding the designers’ work is an image series of Toronto theatre spaces (and one from Stratford, Ontario). I felt it was important in the introduction of the designers and their processes to have a good look at the raw spaces that their work moves within. Theatres are the most valuable material in any performance design; regardless of the design’s aesthetic or it’s performative action it must fit within one of these gathering spaces that remain long after the ephemeral event is over. Drawn from memory or photographed on “dark days” these images show the performance spaces of Toronto through the eyes of a designer.

Featuring Lorenzo Savoini, Rachel Forbes, Camellia Koo, Joanna Yu, and Julie Fox.

Curated and produced by Shannon Lea Doyle


Lorenzo Savoini is an award winning set, costume and lighting designer whose work has been seen throughout Canada.  Most notably he has created designs for Soulpepper Theatre, The Stratford Festival, Canadian Opera Company, Theatre Calgary, Citadel Theatre, MTC, Tarragon Theatre, Neptune Theatre, Thousand Islands Playhouse, Blyth Festival, The Globe Theatre, Theatre Aquarius, Buddies in Bad Times, Theatrefront, TheatreRun, and The Belfry Theatre.  His design for Soulpepper’s Of Human Bondage was selected to represent Canada at the 2015 Prague Quadrennial. Lorenzo is also the Director of Design for Soulpepper Theatre Company.  He is also a member of the Associated Designers of Canada.  He has an MFA from the University of British Columbia, a BA from the University of Guelph and was a graduate of the inaugural Soulpepper Academy. www.lorenzosavoini.com

Rachel Forbes is a Toronto based Set and Costume Designer. Her work has seen several stages in and around Toronto including Factory Theatre, Theatre Passe Muraille, Buddies in Bad Times, Tarragon Theatre. She has had the pleasure of working with many great companies including Obsidian Theatre, Trey Anthony Productions, Watah Theatre, Video Cabaret, Pro Arte Danze, Ballet Creole, and The Shaw Festival. Rachel has been exploring the varied forms of storytelling that are part of the African diaspora as well as theatrical pieces that combine movement, dance and textual theatre. Rachel is a graduate of Ryerson Theatre School’s Performance Production program. She has been mentored closely by Astrid Janson and Obsidian Theatre Company. www.behance.net/RachelForbes

Camellia Koo is an award winning Toronto based set and costume designer for theatre, opera, dance and site-specific performance installations. She is a graduate of Ryerson Theatre School, and completed her M.A. in Scenography at Central Saint Martins College of Art and Design, and the Hogeschool voor de Kunsten. Recent designs for opera and ballet include collaborations with Against the Grain, Banff Centre, Ballet Jörgen, Boston Lyric Opera, The Canadian Opera Company, Pacific Opera Victoria, University of Toronto Opera, and Tapestry New Opera. Recent designs for theatre include collaborations with Buddies in Bad Times Theatre, Cahoots Theatre Projects, Factory Theatre, fu-Gen Asian Canadian Theatre Company, Native Earth Performing Arts, Obsidian Theatre Company, Soulpepper Theatre Company, The Shaw Festival, The Stratford Festival, Tarragon Theatre, amongst many others.

Joanna Yu is a set and costume designer based in Toronto. She has designed for The Stratford Festival, The Blyth Festival, Young People’s Theatre, Tarragon, Factory, Cahoots, Why Not Theatre, Buddies in Bad Times, The Theatre Centre, fu-Gen, Neptune Theatre, The Grand, Nightwood, Volcano, NovaDance, Carousel Players, Talk is Free. She has also a guest artist/designer with Humber College, Sheridan College, George Brown College, Ryerson, and guest lectures at York University. Recent credits include: Sequence and The Circle (Tarragon), acquiesce (Factory/fu-Gen), Enchanted Loom (Cahoots/Factory), The Aeneid (Stratford). Upcoming: James and the Giant Peach (YPT), Millennial Malcontent (Tarragon), Freedom Singer (project Humanity), Butcher (Mirvish/Why Not Theatre), The Komagata Maru Incident  and The Breathing Hole (Stratford). Joanna was born in Hong Kong, raised in Thornhill, and happy to call Toronto home. www.joannayudesign.com

Julie Fox is a set and costume designer whose work has been seen across Canada and in many international theatre festivals. Since graduating from The National Theatre School in 1994 she has won Four Dora Awards for set design; the Virginia Cooper Award for costume design; and received META and Sterling Award nominations.  Recent credits include: For Stratford, Macbeth, The Taming of the Shrew, A Midsummer Night’s Dream, Othello, The Best Brothers, The Little Years, For the Pleasure of Seeing Her Again. Elsewhere: The Wedding Party, The Watershed, The Seagull, Someone Else, Seeds, I, Claudia, The Country (Crow’s Theatre); Arigato, Tokyo, The Maids, Blasted (Buddies in Bad Times); Endgame, The Long Valley (Soulpepper); Within the Glass, The Patient Hour, Faust, The Designated Mourner, The Cryptogram (Tarragon); Segal Centre, Citadel, Necessary Angel, Theatre Passe Muraille. Opera: Volcano. Dance: adelheid, Susanna Hood, Chartier Danse.

Shannon Lea Doyle is a performance designer and sculptor. She holds a BFA from OCAD University and upon graduating was awarded the Sculpture and Installation Medal. Shannon trained in set, costume, lighting and projection design at the Soulpepper Academy in Toronto, a prestigious two-year paid training program structured as a “young company” within one of Canada’s leading theatres. During that time Shannon studied under the guidance of Lorenzo Savoini. Shannon works consistently theatre, performance art, dance and sculptural disciplines. She is an Associate Artist with Toronto based Vazari Dance Projects as well as Sudbury based musical theatre company YES Theatre. Shannon was Assistant to the 7a*11d International Performance Art Festival in 2016. She is passionate about fostering connections across disciplines in order to create a stronger and more vital creative community in Toronto.

The Toronto Design Offsite Festival (TO DO) is the largest design festival in Canada, with over 100 events and exhibitions taking place across the city of Toronto from January 16-22, 2017. Going into its 7th year, TO DO transforms Toronto into a hub for creativity, taking design and art out of the studio and into the urban sphere, bringing people together to celebrate contemporary culture. We provide opportunities for emerging talent, and engage the community with exceptional and accessible public programming.

TO DO 17 Logo

Connect with TO DO
Website: todesignoffsite.com
Facebook: facebook.com/TorontoDesignOffsiteFestival
Twitter: twitter.com/TODesignOffsite

Instagram: instagram.com/TODesignOffsite

#TODO2017

Toronto Offsite Design Festival: Models & Drawings

January 16 – January 28, 2017 | Exhibition in the Third Floor North Hallway Gallery

Hours: Building Hours are everyday 8am-9pm except Statutory Holidays

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Models and drawings of built and speculative work by Polymétis, an architecture and landscape design studio based in Toronto, led by Michaela MacLeod and Nicholas Croft. Exhibited work highlights an interest in experimental material applications, phenomenology, and the fusion of manual and digital means of representation.

Projects include Pink Punch (Jardin de Métis 2012, Grand Métis, Québec), Hotbox (Winters Stations 2015, Toronto, Ontario), IceBox (IceBreakers 2017, Toronto, Ontario), Contour Corridor (Public art proposal 2015, Ancaster, Ontario), and Noisy Water (Public art proposal 2015, Bellingham, Washington).

 

The Toronto Design Offsite Festival (TO DO) is the largest design festival in Canada, with over 100 events and exhibitions taking place across the city of Toronto from January 16-22, 2017. Going into its 7th year, TO DO transforms Toronto into a hub for creativity, taking design and art out of the studio and into the urban sphere, bringing people together to celebrate contemporary culture. We provide opportunities for emerging talent, and engage the community with exceptional and accessible public programming.

TO DO 17 Logo

Connect with TO DO
Website: todesignoffsite.com
Facebook: facebook.com/TorontoDesignOffsiteFestival
Twitter: twitter.com/TODesignOffsite
Instagram: instagram.com/TODesignOffsite

#TODO2017

At The Koffler Gallery


Leopold Plotek: No Work, Nor Device, Nor Knowledge, Nor Wisdom

January 19 – March 19, 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, January 19, 2017 | 6 PM – 9 PM | FREE

Artist & Curator Talk: Sunday, January 22, 2017 | 2 PM | FREE

 

Conceived as Leopold Plotek’s first survey, this exhibition spans five decades, including the debut of his most recent paintings alongside pivotal earlier canvases that establish the artist’s formal investigations and his intellectual rapport with Sigmund Freud, Melanie Klein and Adrian Stokes.

Born in 1948 in Moscow to Jewish parents, Plotek later moved to Warsaw with his father who became an economic attaché to the Polish Embassy in Moscow during the late Stalinist period. Living and working in Montreal since 1960, he has created a substantial body of work that has been extensively exhibited and collected, carving an essential place in Quebec’s artistic history. Initially a protégé of prominent Plasticien artist Yves Gaucher, Plotek became a teacher and major influence himself, forming a new generation of artists who are at the forefront of Canadian painting today, including Allison Katz, Etienne Zack, Martin Golland and Ben Klein.

While staging a picture of Plotek’s evolving subject matter and existential world-view, this exhibition foregrounds his drive to forge a studio production of unique works. The discordance of form and genre that Plotek favours and explores invest his oeuvre with a depth and complexity that defies both modernist traditions and contemporary art market pressures.

Plotek’s radical, immersive works mine the territories of memory and experience, the subconscious and the intellect, the abstract and the figurative. Positioning pictorial space as a vehicle for both narrative content and emotional exploration, Plotek re-imagines architecture and objects, artists, philosophers and gods, displacing the cultural pantheon onto precarious grounds and offering poignant commentary on the current state of Western civilization, its enduring folly and persistently dark psyche.

Guest Curator : E.C. Woodley

About The Koffler Gallery

The Koffler Gallery is located within The Koffler Centre of the Arts, Suite 104-105 in Artscape Youngplace. The mandate of the Koffler Gallery is to offer a dynamic forum for the presentation of contemporary art, developing a year-round program of exhibitions, publications, public programs and educational initiatives, and fostering the production of new works by Canadian and international artists in all stages of their careers. Reflecting diverse cultural, material and aesthetic orientations, the program highlights the contemporary Jewish experience in a unique framework that invites a comparative examination of narratives among people of varied heritages within a larger discussion of identity, memory and place.

 

At Critical Distance


The Path, The Divide

January 19 – February 19, 2017 | Suite 302 | Exhibition by Brynn Higgins-Stirrup

Hours: When exhibitions are on – Friday to Sunday 12 PM – 5PM  and by appointment, Closed Statutory Holidays

Opening Reception with Curator and Artist: Thursday, January 19, 2017 | 6 PM – 9 PM | FREE

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Critical Distance Centre for Curators (CDCC) is pleased to present The Path, The Divide, a solo exhibition of recent works by Canadian artist Brynn Higgins-Stirrup, curated by Oana Tanase.

Fascinated by the ways in which we confront and reconcile intuitive inquiry with organized thought and form, Higgins-Stirrup has developed a distinctive visual language and practice that revolves around learning systems, geometry, mapping, and writing. Seducing the viewer through technical exactitude and material subtlety, her artworks speak of the space that lies between knowledge and truth, information and meaning.

For this exhibition, curator Oana Tanase has selected a series of works on paper and a mixed media installation that reveal how Higgins-Stirrup incorporates traditional elements and makes use of written language in her art practice. Playing with notions of cognitive processes, such as contemplation and unlearning, The Path, The Divide challenges visitors to an exercise in stationary movement.

A limited letterpress print edition by Brynn Higgins-Stirrup, and catalogue with curatorial essay by Oana Tanase, interview between artist and curator, and full photographic documentation, will accompany the exhibition.

Please join us for an opening reception and edition launch with curator and artist on Thursday, January 19 from 6–10 pm.

Refreshments will be served and all are welcome. Opening coincides with Koffler Gallery’s reception for Leopold Plotek from 6–9 pm on the first floor.

Brynn Higgins-Stirrup received a BFA Honors at Queen’s University in 2013 and studied at Monash University in Australia in 2012. She is currently an MFA candidate in the Penny W Stamps School of Art and Design at the University of Michigan. She has exhibited across Canada, the United States and Europe. In 2016 Higgins-Stirrup was awarded an emerging visual artist grant by the Ontario Arts Council and her artworks have been presented at DNA Artspace (London, Ontario), Truck Contemporary (Calgary, Alberta), Transmitter Gallery (Brooklyn, New York), and the international art exhibition The Lesson of Nature, during Bucharest Art Week (Romania).