Maria Gabankova Home / Residents & Dissidents

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June 18 – July 10, 2016

Opening Reception: June 18, 2016 2-5 PM

Artist Tour: June 26, 2016 2PM

Loop Gallery is pleased to announce Home / Residents & Dissidents, a new exhibition by Maria Gabankova.
Influenced by personal experience, Gabankova’s Home / Residents & Dissidents explores what it means to have a home and what it means to lose it.
Gabankova draws her subject matter from the definition of home: whether it is the place, its inhabitants, or the sense of belonging it somehow provides. Within this framework, the artist then considers the act of residency. For instance, what does it mean to go from being a resident in a family home to a resident in a nursing home, the sort of place not well known for offering the same kind of belonging?
Of particular importance to Gabankova, who fled Czechoslovakia as a young political refugee in 1968, is the loss of home under the strain of cultural and political conflict. Ongoing reports of displacement continue to feed the artist’s investigation into the consequences of the choices facing these residents: to remain a resigned resident or turn dissident. Complex studies of facial expressions, body language, and inanimate elements of home (both inhabited and deserted) come together in Home / Residents & Dissidents to showcase the effect notions of home have on communities worldwide.
Maria Gabankova is a Toronto-based artist and founding member of Loop Gallery. Born in former Czechoslovakia, she also spends time in British Columbia and Prague, Czech Republic, with frequent trips to other European destinations. She taught figure drawing, painting, and portraiture at OCAD University in Toronto from 1990 until 2015 and has exhibited her work extensively in Canada and internationally since 1980. Her work is represented in both private and corporate collections in Canada, the United States, South Korea, and Europe.

Rewind with Elizabeth D’Agostino

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In case you missed Elizabeth D’Agostino’s last show, here’s a little behind-the-scenes Q&A (plus lots of images). By Tara Cooper

5 questions with Elizabeth D’Agostino

1. What’s your elevator pitch for your current show?

Makeshift chronicles my fascination with tree grafting and attempts to create a catalogue of re-organized components and fictional categories of nature with an invented narrative.  I’m interested in the complexities of the changing landscape emphasizing how various paths of nature have been interrupted by rapidly producing populations.

2. What was your strategy for the install at Loop? Were there any challenges?  

The work unfolds organically when I install.  Although I work around the specific measurements of the gallery each installation of prints and ceramic evolves.  The work is built from layers printed onto Washi paper and clay objects arranged within each installation. I have an idea of how things are going to be arranged but when I starting installing everything gets reorganized. The multiple layers and placement of each component can be challenging because it always involves alot of adding, subtracting and moving of parts. There’s usually a big internal sigh of relief and good gut feeling when everything just sits right and the compositional relationships work well with each other.

I enjoy this aspect of the work because it’s still part of the “making” and depending on the space it always varies.

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3. How do you spend your time when you’re not working in the studio?

My life is a balance between work, family and studio.  I’m the Managing Director at Toronto School of Art and I’m lucky to work with so many artists and creative people. I’m also the mom of a busy 5 year old. Lego and Superheros consume my life right now. I love gardening and it’s a big part of my life as well as my well being.  Right now we are preparing the gardens for spring. Everyone pitches in and helps with the gardens, even our dog Diesel.  We have started our vegetable seedlings and with the recent warm temperatures I love looking at new growth in the garden.

Image “Lego Hovercrafts” by Sebastian

This fall I moved my mother out of the family home which she lived in for 50 years since moving to Canada.  It was both difficult and exciting all at the same time.  Lots of stories and many great treasures were found. I’m sure they will find their way into future artworks in some form.   I was pretty sad to leave the garden that my parents built to another family but I know they will enjoy it eventually have their own stories.


4. What artist living or dead would you most like to have dinner with?  What would you order? What question would you ask him/her?

I would love to meet Nancy Spero.  She was so inspirational as an artist, printmaker, feminist, mother.  Her work addressed the realities of political violence and as a  she developed a distinct body of work using so many mediums including drawing, painting, collage and printmaking.  She was so active as an artist even up until her death despite battling degenerative arthritis.

I’m not sure what I would order because I would probably to nervous to eat. I would just listen to her and let the conversation unfold.

5. What’s next in terms of your studio practice?

I’m fascinated with the Cicada insect. They are so magical and I love hearing the sounds they make.  When I was in graduate school I learned about the 17 year Cicada emergence. The sound is so unforgettable.  Various “Broods” or species make their appearance every 17 years in parts of North America. Brood V will emerge this spring in Maryland, New York, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Virginia, and West Virginia. Sounds like a road trip to gather some footage and sounds.

Not sure what is going to unfold in the studio but once I gather images and footage things begin to take shape. I would like to combine digital images with hand drawn images so I will likely start with a new series of drawings.  Makeshift was a big project for me as it was originally created for the Kelowna Art Gallery and carried over into this exhibition at Loop with some new pieces particularly the ceramic objects.

I’m also really excited to start working with the Nature Centre at High Park. They have this terrific community project called the “Urban Bat Project”. You can rent out a monitor and help collect data on the bats in and around Toronto and learn about their habitats.

Right now, I’m looking for a bit of a break from making things and just focusing on research and gathering sources for the next body of work.elizabeth2 elizabethdetail elizabeth6 elizabeth4 elizabeth5  elizabethdetail8 elizabethdetail7 elizabethdetail6  elizabethdetail3

Thelma Rosner – Crossing Lines

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May 21st  – June 12th, 2016
Reception: Thursday, May 26th, 2016 6-9 PM, Artist Talk @ 7pm



cross stitch #8a


loop Gallery is pleased to announce Crossing Lines, a new exhibition by Thelma Rosner

Concern about national and religious conflict has been the subject of much of Rosner’s recent artistic practice. The Cross Stitch paintings in this exhibit consider issues of tribalism and conflict that seem to be epidemic in our world. The paintings contain direct references to both Afghan war rugs and Palestinian cross stitch embroidery. In their labour intensive and repetitive process, they also bring to mind the desire of war’s innocent victims for a return to ordinary domestic routine.

Thelma Rosner studied painting at the University of Western Ontario with Paterson Ewen.

Her recent work is presented in installations involving painting, digital printmaking and sculpture. Its subject matter often refers to social and political issues.Her work has been exhibited in Canada, the USA and England. She has received grants from the Canada Council for the Arts and the Ontario Arts Council.

David Holt – Zoology

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May 21st  – June 12th, 2016
Reception: Thursday, May 26th, 2016 6-9 PM, Artist Talk @ 7pm




loop Gallery is pleased to announce Zoology, a new exhibition by David Holt. 

Holt’s Zoology paintings of living, extinct, and imaginary animals are part of an ongoing series of works inspired by natural history museum displays and illustrated atlases. Monkeys, fish, dogs, cats, birds, raccoons and even dinosaurs and mollusks are playfully depicted in painterly, grid-like arrangements that invite morphological comparisons.

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

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Sung Ja Kim-Chisholm – Pages from Life’s Journey

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April 23rd – May 15th, 2016
Reception: Saturday, April 23rd, 2-5 p.m.

sungja kim 2014


loop Gallery is pleased to announce Pages from Life’s Journey, a new exhibition by Sung Ja Kim-Chisholm

The pieces that comprise Kim-Chisholm’s latest exhibition symbolically communicate the vital significance of the pages that make up the books of our lives. Our memories, experiences, hopes, joys and disappointments are each symbolized by a page or a coil in the unfolding of our individual life journeys.

The works are made with white fabric saturated with white plaster. The fabric symbolizes how our memories and experiences are tightly woven together within the events of each of our lives, while the central importance of the colour white, through its reflection of most of the wavelengths of visible light symbolizes how our memories, experiences, hopes, joys and disappointments are reflected in our lives.

Kim-Chisholm is a Toronto artist and art educator, who has been a longstanding member of Loop. She has participated in many group and solo exhibitions in both South Korea and Canada and has also been retained for many private commissions in both Asia and in North America. She graduated from Chu-Gye University for the Arts in Korea and the Ontario College of Art & Design University. Her work can be found in numerous private collections.