Blog

Mary Catherine Newcomb A . . .

By | Exhibitions | No Comments

December 8 – 30,  2018

Opening Reception: December 8, 2018

 Mary Catherine Newcomb’s  A… exposes the plight of a significant but silent and ignored group of people, while inviting the viewer to ponder the roles, consequences and function of exclusion in larger contexts.

Rage, humiliation, shame, self doubt and a loss of self respect are only a few of the destructive emotions that exclusion evokes. Wresting with these feelings is a messy, painful, confusing, undignified and interminable hell. The lucky, like the heroes of myth, emerge transformed, while the unlucky or inexperienced flounder.

For Newcomb, this isn’t an abstract idea. The artist has a stigmatized and misrepresented health issue, and has been unable to return to work because providing a safe environment for her conflicts with the rights of others.

Referencing personal experience and her body, Newcomb draws the viewer into a realm that acknowledges a direct animal response to exclusion, and alludes to the mythic demand for sacrifice. In her use of historical imagery, she asks whether this situation is merely a modern iteration of an inescapable human drama.

In The Scarlet Letter, heroine Hester Prynne is ostracized for sexual transgression. She is ordered to wear her shame in the form of a scarlet ‘A’ (for adulteress) sewn onto her clothing. In contrast to her defiant, embellished A, Newcomb’s A… stands for allergic and asthmatic (and artist) . . .

As physical and social environments rapidly change, various people, species and landscapes cannot survive. Mary Catherine is proud to be, in her own small way, going down on the same ship as other tested individuals and species. A is for absent.

About the Artist

Mary Catherine Newcomb is a sculptor, installation artist and teacher. She studied biological science at the University of Toronto and the University of Guelph before committing to a career as an artist. She holds a general degree from the University of Toronto, a BFA from the University of Waterloo and an MFA from York University. She has exhibited work across Canada and in Germany, and is the recipient of many grants and awards. She is a member of the Nethermind collective, and has taught at various institutions in Southern Ontario — most recently for the Ontario College system.

The artist would like to thank Two Smiths and Robert McNair, who donated time and resources to help raise awareness of an ignored issue. She also wants to acknowledge the unrecognized bravery of individuals who have responded with legal challenges to the transportation industry’s carelessness and apparent determination to put health and lives of the vulnerable at risk.

David Holt Paintings

By | Exhibitions | No Comments

December 8 – 30,  2018

Opening Reception: December 8, 2 – 5 PM

Loop is proud to announce Orvieto Paintings, an exhibition of recent work by David Holt.

The paintings in this exhibition were completed over the past two years, and are part of a larger ongoing series of works involving history, architecture and religion. Most grew out of work from two summers in Orvieto, Italy. Some are based directly on sculpture from the Orvieto Duomo façade, while others reference a range of Early Christian, Byzantine and Medieval sources. Many are variations on emblematic (rather than narrative) depictions of Christian saints. Other paintings freely interpret the shapes found in religious architecture. The compositional grids of most of the paintings allow for a playful visual interplay of motifs. 

The artist wishes to thank the Art in Orvieto program of the Institute for Christian Studies in Toronto and Gordon College in Orvieto for their collegial support. 

About the Artist

Holt is a painter whose works are in private collections in the USA and Canada. He has been a recipient of a painting grant from the Ludwig Vogelstein Foundation and an artist’s residency at the Ragdale Foundation. A professor of art for many years at Marymount College (later part of Fordham University) in Tarrytown, New York, he has lived and worked in Toronto since 2005, teaching art at Upper Canada College. 

For more information, visit: https://sites.google.com/site/davidholtpaintings/

Elizabeth D’Agostino Other Collisions

By | Exhibitions | No Comments

November 10 – December 2, 2018

Opening Reception: November 10,  2 – 5 PM

Elizabeth D’Agostino’s latest exhibition at Loop Gallery, examines the precarious balance of habitat loss and human interconnection.

During the summer of 2017, D’Agostino with her family ventured on a road trip to Sointula, BC, a small coastal fishing village on Malcolm Island accessible only by ferry. While in Sointula she took part in the Sointula Art Shed Residency, gathering research material and producing a number of drawings and collages of local flora and fauna. Through the exploration of the management of living systems in nature and their interactions with humans, this body of work illustrates animal nature and the complexities of the changing landscape, emphasizing how various paths have been interrupted.

Other Collisions is a series of multi-layered etchings, digital prints and sculptures on Gampi tissue, a resilient Japanese paper. The use of Gampi tissue provides a surface that is both visceral and transformative, and transfers the etched line sinuously through both the transparent and translucent layers.

Each image oscillates between the real and fabricated, creating new arrangements influenced by their formal characteristics and habitats. This body of work employs strategies related to biodiversity and references images from plants, animals and microorganisms that inhabit the Canadian landscape. 

Fictitious environments and constructed stories merge these elements, creating a dialogue between the natural and human-made world. When installed, the prints and print-based objects produce a catalogue of re-purposed environments and fictional categories of nature within a narrative.

About the Artist

Elizabeth D’Agostino holds a BFA from the University of Windsor and a MFA from Southern Illinois University, Carbondale. Her work has been exhibited in Canada and internationally including Iziko: Museum of Cape Town, South Africa, Manhattan Graphics Center, New York, and The Print Center, Philadelphia. In addition, D’Agostino’s prints can also be found in many private and public collections including the University of Changchun Jilin, China; Anchor Graphics at Columbia College Chicago, Illinois, Department of Foreign Affairs Canada, and Ernst and Young, Canada. 

D’Agostino is the recipient of many awards and including the Hexagon Special Projects Fellowship at Open Studio, Toronto. In 2015, she was selected by the Department of Foreign Affairs, Trade and Development Canada to create the custom carpet design for the Ontario Room in the newly renovated Canada House, London, England.

Elizabeth D’Agostino lives and works in Toronto and is a member of Open Studio Fine Art Printmaking Centre and Loop Gallery.

 

Jenn Law – Still

By | Exhibitions | No Comments

November 10 – December 2, 2018

Opening reception: November 10, 2018

 

 

 Jenn Law’s latest exhibition, Still, builds a biographical narrative through the social life of heirlooms. The work is inspired, in part, by the writing of Gustave Flaubert and his realist approach to constructing narrative worlds through detailed descriptions of discrete objects in domestic spaces. 

Hand-lithographed on tissue-thin paper, Law’s heirlooms recall Flaubert’s own poetic inventory—the parrot, for example; an iconic mascot of language and mimicry. Transparently layered, each storied artifact serves as an ethereal portrait of a personal heirloom in the artist’s own collection, collectively called upon for the tenuous access they grant their possessor to past lives, real and imagined. 

Presented in the form of an artist’s book, the work is designed to evolve, the signatures left unbound so that new object-pages may be added to the collection and potentially rearranged by the reader. Accompanying the book, the heirlooms simultaneously appear as individual works of printed ephemera, ghosted objects intended to be gifted or folded away in books or drawers, distributed into the world beyond the confines of the original collection. 

Approached as a deconstructed vanitas arrangement, each “still” ultimately references the capacity and futility of objects to create meaning, as well as their elusive promise to extend the collector’s life through their individual heirloom trajectories. 

About the Artist

Jenn Law is an artist, writer, and researcher living in Toronto. Her multi-disciplinary practice explores book culture, the historical archive/library, and print-based strategies of preservation and problem-solving. She holds a PhD in Anthropology from the School of Oriental and African Studies (SOAS), University of London, UK, a BA in Anthropology from McGill University, Montreal, Quebec, and a BFA from Queen’s University, Kingston, Ontario. 

Law has exhibited her work internationally, including exhibitions in Canada, the United States, Australia, Taiwan, Spain, and the United Kingdom, and has worked as a lecturer, curator, and editor in Canada, the UK, and South Africa, publishing on contemporary art and print culture. She is the co-editor, with Tara Cooper, of Printopolis, published in 2016 by Open Studio, Toronto. In 2017, Law co-founded Arts + Letters Press with Penelope Stewart, with whom she co-edits the journal art + reading.

Marian Wihak Marking Time

By | Exhibitions | No Comments

October 13 – November 4, 2018

Opening Reception: October 13, 2-5 PM

Collective City film screening: October 20, 3 PM

 Loop Gallery is proud to present Marking Time, an interdisciplinary exhibition of work by Marian Wihak. Marking Time continues the artist’s interest in creating situations that vacillate between the haptic and the evocative, driven by overarching notions of connectivity, duration, and the vicissitudes inherent within the evolutionary process. Wihak conjures metaphorical and suggestive narratives that reflect on the various ways time inscribes itself upon our world and also, how we, in turn, fit into the vast trajectory of existence. In her own words:

“The leaping off point for this new exhibition, Marking Time, is Archipelago — a large-scale oil painting I did on Fogo Island while attending a residency there in 2011. This will be Archipelago’s professional Toronto debut, and it is a singular and visceral work, which I painted directly onto the plywood wallboards supplied to us in the Fogo Island Long Studio. It stands as an homage and portrait of an island forged 420 million years ago by ice, fire and sea, the markings of which manifest at every turn, as geological scars and patterns, rock forms, tidal pools and time-worn textures, in expansive and minute scales equally.

“New graphite drawings created to respond to and complement Archipelago explore a range of demarcations, ravages and ruptures, all traces and evidence of our planet’s evolution. The graphite offers velvety weight and gravitas while at the same time as it lends transcendence through specific erasures, and metaphoric agency that exploits the marriage of material and theme. Three timeworn boulders resolutely mark the space between Archipelago and the graphite drawings, and offer haptic resting spots from which to take in the work.

“A video comprised of an assemblage of shifting images that I have gathered in the course of various travels, presents as a view into and across time, with the markings of geological evolution and process a relentless presence.

“My intention with Marking Time is that each of these individual works possesses their own agency, at the same time as the assembled installation invites an engaging spatial experience and offers an oblique yet compelling narrative.”