As a Canadian that has lived and worked in Paris and in New York, I have spent over 15 years navigating the complexities of ‘adulting’ as an expat. By adulting I mean figuring out things like healthcare, insurance, social services, retirement plans, income tax, etc. After a few years back living and working in Ontario… I was pregnant and on a new adulting quest to navigate the ambiguities of parental leave benefits. I had heard that Canadian parental benefits rivalled […]
Timeraiser is a brilliant organization – a party for social good that supports emerging artists and nonprofit organizations across Canada. With the slogan “Bid Time. Do Good. Get Art” Timeraiser purchases artwork from local emerging artists, and then auctions that art at a massive fundraiser. The twist, instead of bidding money participants bid volunteer hours to local charities and nonprofit organizations. The idea is you support a local charity that needs your help and you’re incentivized for the good work by getting […]
Gentrification and new building developments are rampant in the city of Toronto, which has given way to a very exciting (while tragic) opportunity for art activations in these defunct and scheduled to be demolished sites. This summer we saw the Luminato festival at the abandoned Hearn Generating Station, and now Toronto for Everyone – a 4 day arts festival hosted in the iconic Honest Ed’s department store. Toronto For Everyone, an initiative by the Centre for Social Innovation, invited artists to build out […]
Every year the Gladstone Hotel hosts Come Up To My Room, a design event where artists are invited to take over rooms and halls of the historic hotel with art installations. The Gladstone has a long history in supporting artists with this annual event, an artist in residency programs, and have unique rooms designed by artist. This year’s highlights I really enjoyed Patrick Li’s Fortune Room, where the artist saved discarded fortune cookie fortunes repurposed into wall art and a carpet of […]
While the Interior Design Show is happening at the convention centre, the Toronto Design Offsite Festival showcases over 100 events during the week including exhibitions, artists talks, and open studio visits, in a true celebration of the best of Canadian Design. For all the art I see, there is nothing I enjoy more than preliminary work and seeing the process behind all the magic. Highlights were seeing these architectural models by Polymétis team Michaela MacLeod and Nicholas Croft. Furniture presentation Founded by […]
Mitchell F. Chan‘s exhibition Art & Inactivism is a larger conversation about the voice in public political discourse, a very charged and timely topic in today’s political climate. Visually there is a ephemeral beauty of watching two vapour rings appear with dramatic accelerated force and then gently disappear in their collision. The visual speed, velocity and impact in the softness of colliding clouds.
It was at the Musée des Beaux-Arts Montréal in the summer of 2000 went I first experienced the dreamlike surrealistic installations of Pipilotti Rist. I remember how her work played with scale and sentimental childhood nostalgia. The installation had massive chairs you could perch yourself up on, and sit in a vibrant room filled with sound and video projections. Her current installation at the New Museum continues this concept, where visitors are invited to lay in beds and watch underwater videos projected on […]
The Broad is an incredible art museum founded by wealthy philanthropist Eli Broad. The building is spectacular, designed by Diller Scofidio + Renfro. Admission is free, so it is absolutely necessary to reserve a ticket weeks in advance because the standby line moves very slowly (see for yourself on their StandbyLine Twitter feed). The collection is presented almost like an encyclopedic narration of the best works by the most relevant artists. Rooms are dedicated to great contemporary masters like Robert Rauschenberg, […]
This exhaustive exhibition of Doug Aitken’s multichannel, audio, video, and sculptural works is a spectacular presentation of his unique immersive approach. Visitors are greeted into the exhibition by a large circular partition titled Song 1, originally created to be projected on to the rounded facade of Washington DC’s Hirschhorn Museum. The soundtrack is the 1930s song by The Flamingos ‘I Only Have Eyes For You’ and visually is a series of cinematic moments of people singing the song in different contexts. Dreamy, smooth, […]
In/Future is an arts experience festival showcasing sculpture, film, music and immersive installations held at the now defunct Ontario Place theme park. Having grown up in Toronto, I have vivid childhood memories of summers spent in the waterpark and running through the neon punching-bag obstacle course. I didn’t know that the theme park had closed in 2012 and the entire site is being revitalized, and In/Future is an exciting expression of the revitalization effort. The silos, each pavilion and along the […]
Franz Erhard Walther’s sculptural work at The Powerplant explores the relationship of the viewer, their body, space, and the intimacy of interactions between. The room is piled with 58 precisely folded packages of cotton fabric. The sculptures only materialize once ‘activated’ by the viewers. There is a meditative quality to the unrolling / folding of the fabric. Once activated and inside the material you feel enveloped in a strange sense of quiet and focus of the intimate space you are occupying.
The permanent collection is home to a trove of powerful works of art that engage you physically within this massive space in the presence of encompassing works. Work by Louise Bourgeois, Sol Lewitt, Fred Sandback, On Kawara, Robert Smithson, John Chamberlain, Michael Heizer and more.
The Museum of Contemporary Art Detroit is a remarkable space and it is such a pleasure to see curatorial dedication to local artists. Just behind the museum is Mike Kelley’s Mobile Homestead, a replica of the home in the Detroit suburbs where Mike Kelley grew up. Mobile Homestead hosts artists to interpret the interior in temporary installations and create a dialogue about community, private and public space, and the American dream. Carlos Rolon created a hilariously fun, shag carpeted, macramé wall hanging […]
Detroit has slowly been gaining notoriety as a hub for artists looking for community, and affordable cost of living. Detroit Artist Market was founded in 1932 to foster and promote Detroit and Michigan’s emerging and established artists. The space is filled with a great range of art at every price point. Some of my favourites:
The Design Museum of Holon is easily accessible and worth a visit, as it just a quick bus ride away from central Tel Aviv. Just the experience of entering the hollow central courtyard then flowing up the ramp, and feeling the gentle warmth radiating off the building as you enter the main exhibition hall is really special, and slightly reminiscent of being in a Richard Serra sculpture. Jamie Hayon’s work filled both gallery spaces, bringing forward an exhaustive collection of his glassware, […]
The Tel Aviv Museum of Art is an expansive compound comprised of three buildings. The Herta and Paul Amir building is a modern angular building designed by architect Preston Scott Cohen. Once inside the stairways and halls give way to multiple levels of light filled gallery spaces. The museum programming supports a perfect balance of Israeli artists as well as internationally renowned arts. The portrait show on view gave an interesting variety of traditional portraiture like Pinchas Litvinosky from early 1920s, to more […]
I have dreamed of visiting The Hirschorn for many many years, and when I finally arrived with great pleasure to see this work by Shana Lutker. At The Hub of Things brought together the best work from the Hirschorn permanent collection, marvellously curated the donut shaped building.
Wonder is a perfect titled for this stellar exhibition which brought together contemporary artists working in large scale installation with unique materials like reclaimed wood, glass marbles, and plastic bugs. Vibrant, colourful, and engaging. The Renwick is the contemporary arm of the Smithsonian.
A must see for art lovers is the Judd Foundation at 101 Spring St in New York. Donald Judd lived, worked, and raised his family in this space. Every object, spoon, chair, and art work is purposefully posed and placed to articulate Judd’s creative aesthetic. Known for his minimalist sculptural pieces, Judd was also a brilliant furniture designer, and the dining room table is a gorgeous example of his prototypes as each chair is unique and exhibits the clean lines […]
MOVE! is a 3 day interactive art experience hosted at Brookfield Place – where fashion and fine art come together and put the viewer in the center of the work. I attended the previous MOVE! held at PS1 back in 2010 and was great to see this year’s iteration more family friendly with loads of children engaging with art and having a blast. My favorite collaboration from both years was Cynthia Rowley & Olaf Breuning. They designed an artwork and installed cups […]
Storm King is my favorite end of summer get away. Convenient 1.5 hour drive up the Hudson, the 500 acre property is filled with massive sculptures. This year’s featured artist is Linda Bengalis, who created a series of towering textured fountains. My favorite piece, Hills and Clouds, made of phosphorescent polyurethane that almost mirrored the iridescent glow of the setting sun against hills in the distance. Maya Lin’s Wavefield is not to be missed, 15 foot waves built and swell […]
Tree of Codes creative roots were inspired by Jonathan Safran Foer’s book by the same name, which is considered more a work of art in its own right than a work of pure literature. Music composition by Jamie XX, visual conception by Olafur Eliasson, and choreography by Wayne McGregor – every aspect of this performance was transporting and beautifully mesmerizing. Layering was the key transgressive feature of the performance – the layering of the sound, the layering in the depths of […]
Doel is a small village just outside of Antwerp – once a thriving town where the inhabitants serviced the local powerplant, now has become an massive graffiti haven. In 2008 Doel supposed to be demolished to make room for the expansion of the Port of Antwerp. With some 200 inhabitants refusing to leave, and the eventual economic crisis in 2008, the plans were stalled and Doel became an erie ghost town. The empty, boarded up houses became the perfect canvas […]
In recent years, museums have begun hosting fashion-centric exhibitions as hot ticket events to engage younger audience. Bozar Contemporary Museum in Brussels exhibition Unexpected Fashion Story, aka Belge et la Bête showcased the most talented fashion designers to come out of Belgium. Not only is the clothing elaborate works of fine art, design, and artisanal craftsmanship, but what I found the most captivating was the exhibition design. The placement of the wall text narratives on giant framed slabs of plywood, the shop […]
The Palazzo Grassi houses exhibitions of the personal collection of François Pinault. For this exhibition Rudolf Stingel carpeted the entire 5000 sq meter, multi level palace in this rich warm oriental rug textile. Hung on these carpeted walls were large scale black and white paintings, and massive oil paintings that almost look like burnished metal. This reflected painted technique we saw a few years ago at the Stingel exhibition at the Whitney.
Sounds, lights, noise and film, Philippe Parreno fills the Park Avenue Armory with a visceral experience. At different stages the lights would dim, certain sculptures would flash, others would chime. The piano keys would magically move and dance on their own with no music to accompany the phantom performer.
The Louisiana Museum of Modern Art is a stunning art destination which I highly recommend, just a quick hour by train north of Copenhagen. Peter Doig is one of my favorite painters, so it was a great pleasure to see this encompassing exhibition featuring more than thirty of his large scale paintings. The show was hung beautifully, in a way that allowed each painting to stand alone. Peter Doig was born in Edinburgh, but spent some time in his teenage years […]
While in Reykjavik I managed to visit the Listasafn art museum as well as the sister institute that houses the contemporary collection called Kjarvalsstadir. The main art museum is a small retro building, I especially liked the bronze writing on the wall by Hulda Hakon. At the contemporary gallery housing an interesting variety of very self referential pop infused art. Like this lego sculpture of Reykjavik’s famous Hallgrimskirkja church, with little icons of Lisa and Snowball from the Simpsons. The nightmarish […]
Actual Size is a small space with a compelling program tucked away in Los Angeles’ Chinatown. The show Rogue Locomotives paired sculptor Benjamin Reiss with abstract paintings by Conor Thompson. An articulate maze of cartoon like elements at once imbedded while simultaneously moving through the sculpture’s cogs. A contemporary nod to the Futurists mechanics with vibrant colours.
Six Things at the Jewish Museum brings together video and sculptural works by the design team Sagmeister and Walsh known for their identity branding work, and especially their unique and dynamic typography. The duo use everyday materials like cups of coffee, sugar cubes, and cream to create these engaging narratives of everyday mantras to increase daily happiness. The six things are : If I Don’t Ask I Won’t Get Keeping a Diary Supports Personal Development Be More Flexible It Is Pretty Much […]
Famed activist Chinese artist Ai Weiwei has been reportedly detained by the Chinese government since April 3, 2011, which has subsequently sparked a global outcry and a massive Free Ai Weiwei campaign. Weiwei is a renowned artist, photographer, and sculptor well known for his collaboration in the design of the Birdnest Beijing National Stadium for the Olympics as well a vast body of subtle yet politically charged artworks. There is a massive amount of information available at Free Ai Weiwei […]
This year is the 75th edition of the Whitney Biennials. This year the show is simply titled 2010 – as opposed to traditional thematics based on cultural issues or politics, this year’s theme is centered around contemporary art production. An undercurrent seemingly – images procured from the internet or youtube, bizzare incongruent performative video, and surprisingly modest and thoughtly beautiful pen and ink drawings. Highlights of works that I really enjoyed: Storm Tharp builds his strange and beautiful characters by […]