Toronto Exhibitions

Flash Forward 2011 Book Launch and Exhibition
AirShip 37

November 9 – 16, 2011

Entering its seventh year, Flash Forward, the Magenta Foundation’s juried competition continues to track the best emerging photographers from Canada, the U.K. and the U.S. Please join us at a special opening reception taking place at 7:00 p.m. on November 9 at AirShip 37 in Toronto's Distillery District to toast this year’s Bright Spark Award Winner, Jessica Eaton, and the many participating artists who will be in attendance. This year’s catalogue will be available for purchase at the event. Visit for full details.

Marc Chagall: Blue Circus (1950-52): Oil on canvas, 232.5 x 175.8 cm. Collection of the MNAM, Centre Pompidou, Paris. © Adagp/Centre Pompidou, Mnam-CCi/Dist.RMN. © SODRAC 2011 and ADAGP 2011 Chagall ®Marc Chagall: Blue Circus (1950-52): Oil on canvas, 232.5 x 175.8 cm. Collection of the MNAM, Centre Pompidou, Paris. © Adagp/Centre Pompidou, Mnam-CCi/Dist.RMN. © SODRAC 2011 and ADAGP 2011 Chagall ®

Marc Chagall and the Russian Avant-Garde
Art Gallery of Ontario

To January 15, 2012

Organized by the Centre Pompidou, Chagall and the Russian Avant-Garde, brings together 32 of the colourful and dreamlike works of the Vitebsk, Belarus-born Marc Chagall (1887-1985) whose paintings are arguably among the most recognized in the world, having been plastered on everything from coffee mugs to calendars. His images of floating children and animals are sure to be crowd-pleasers, but this exhibition also examines how Chagall’s Russian heritage influenced his art and his place within the wider world of Russian modernism. Visitors will have the opportunity to compare Chagall’s work with some by his ‘serious’ contemporaries, including painters like Wassily Kandinsky (by whom the exhibition features eight works), Kasimir Malevich and Vladimir Tatlin. Related programming, Constructing Utopia: Books and Posters from Revolutionary Russia (to February 12, 2012), surveys the iconic, ground-breaking graphics of Russian book and poster design following the revolution of 1917.

Also on view: General Idea: Haute Culture continues to January 1, 2012.

Thrush Holmes: Ending (2011): Pigment print with resin on panel, 84 x 60 inches. Courtesy the artist and Angell Gallery, Toronto.Thrush Holmes: Ending (2011): Pigment print with resin on panel, 84 x 60 inches. Courtesy the artist and Angell Gallery, Toronto.

Thrush Holmes
Angell Gallery

Opens November 5, 2011

Noiseless Moon, the first solo exhibition at this gallery by Toronto-based Thrush Holmes, introduces two new bodies of work that derive inspiration from Leonard Cohen’s quasi-medieval love poem Song. In a suite of lush canvases depicting bouquets of flowers, the artist amps up the colour palette in a playful attempt to break down traditional, conservative notions of still-life painting. In a series of pigment prints, he conjures a psychedelic universe centred on collaged still-lives of the female figure. Their shiny, resin-covered surfaces invite touching and desire while also presenting a physical barrier to the seductive images underneath.

David Hockney: Untitled, 8 June 2009, No. 2 (2009): iPhone drawing. © David Hockney.David Hockney: Untitled, 8 June 2009, No. 2 (2009): iPhone drawing. © David Hockney.

David Hockney
Royal Ontario Museum
To January 1, 2012


Leonardo Da Vinci
Ontario Science Centre

Through March 2012

Two cutting-edge exhibitions allow visitors to engage with art in unique ways through technology. The North American debut of Fresh Flowers by the internationally renowned British artist David Hockney also marks his first major show in Canada in over two decades. In 2008, Hockney began working with the iPhone, creating hundreds of finger-drawn images ranging from flowers to self-portraits, using the Brushes app. The title Fresh Flowers also serves a metaphor for the way in which the exhibition will constantly evolve during its stay in Toronto, with the artist being able to insert new drawings into the show via email. Approximately 100 iPhone drawings are displayed on 20 iPods, as well as 100 iPad drawings on 25 iPads, with 20 of the drawings featuring playback animations of works being drawing from start to finish, providing viewers insight into the artist’s creative process.

Meanwhile, the Ontario Science Centre invites visitors to interact with the visionary works of Leonardo da Vinci (1452 – 1519), who, during his lifetime, was an inventor, painter, scientist, architect and more. The exhibition features unique models of some of da Vinci’s incredible inventions, including his “great kite” (an early example of a flying machine) and musical instruments like the harpsichord-viola. The exhibition also includes digital recreations of some of da Vinci’s most famous paintings, including “The Last Supper” and, of course, the “Mona Lisa”. Digital technology allows visitors to examine the Master’s brush strokes in the finest detail.

Didier Courbot: Vertical (2010): Installation view at Susan Hobbs, Toronto.Didier Courbot: Vertical (2010): Installation view at Susan Hobbs, Toronto.

Didier Courbot
Susan Hobbs
To December 3, 2011

Paris-based Didier Courbot creates playful works using everyday materials that call attention to the meaning behind his gestures. His latest solo exhibition presents a new body of work that builds upon themes explored previously in works such as his Needs series (1999 – ongoing), which documents the artist’s interventions in public spaces. Discarded or usually overlook materials are renewed in various ways, and viewers are supplied with intimate encounters with found objects to emblazoned messages sourced from the streets.

Heather Nicol: from the Salon series, 2011: Courtesy KWT Contemporary, Toronto.Heather Nicol: from the Salon series, 2011: Courtesy KWT Contemporary, Toronto.

Heather Nicol and Marina Black
KWT Contemporary
To November 19, 2011

Multidisciplinary artist and independent curator Heather Nicol, who delighted audiences a couple of years ago with her exhibition Art School: Dismissed, creates work that investigates themes of longing – for attention or love – and often play with notions of beauty and femininity. In her exhibition What You (may) Want, Nicol continues with her Salon series in which she explores display culture, domesticity and seduction, incorporating sound, most often of the human voice, into the works. The voice elements serve as a comment on the mediated sounds that are increasing ubiquitous within the public domain. Russian-born, Canada-based Marina Black’s exhibition, 14 Metres to the Daylight Surface, is the result of a fellowship in which she was invited to create images of the industrial city of Donetsk in the Eastern Ukraine. Black was asked to create “a story” that would reflect how she felt about and experienced the city; Black focussed on areas in which traces of migration were left behind, documenting the “phantom” buildings and empty spaces.

Also Showing:

  • Tony Scherman: Black October at Georgia Scherman Projects, to November 26
  • Otino Corsano: Happiness, Part One at p/m Gallery, opens November 3
  • Strategic Arts Initiative 2.0, with Laura Kikauka, David Rokeby at InterAccess Electronic Media Arts Centre, November 3 - 6
  • Cathy Daley and Ginette Legare at Birch Libalato, opens November 26
  • Ineffable Plasticity: the experience of being human at the Museum of Contemporary Canadian Art, opens November 18
  • Angela Grauerholz: The Inexhaustible Image at the University of Toronto Art Centre, to November 26, 2011, and at Olga Korper Gallery, opens November 5
  • Derek Sullivan at Jessica Bradley Art + Projects, opens November 12
  • Brendan Fernandez at Diaz Contemporary, opens November 24