November 1, 2014

Earlier this week, I had a chance to revisit Kubrick’s horror masterpiece “The Shining”. The film makes reference to several Canadian artworks including four Alex Colville paintings, two Norval Morrisseau works, Paul Peel’s “After the Bath”, Tom Thomson and J.E.H. MacDonald. I’m delighted to verify another Group of Seven artist to the list.

In one scene, Jack Torrence (played by Nicholson) walks down a corridor towards the Gold ballroom of the Overlook Hotel. Before entering the ballroom he stops. Behind him is a poster reproduction of a Canadian icon, “Red Maple” by A.Y. Jackson.

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The painting shows a supple red maple on the banks of churning rapids. Some art historians have pointed out the symbolic resonance of the young maple with the forging of Canada’s national identity. At the time Jackson painted this canvas, our young nation had been at battle for months overseas in the Great War. The artist painted it in his Toronto studio in November 1914. This great work marks its centennial this month!

AY Jackson - Red Maple (1914)

AY Jackson – Red Maple (1914)

October 17, 2014

“We Go Next!” proclaims one of the strident posters. Nothing could be truer for this batch of framed propaganda posters. Next in the yourSpace gallery will be vintage World War One posters. We’ll start hanging on Monday.


Station Gallery will mark the centennial of the Great War outbreak this year by featuring selected broadsheet posters from the Wildman Collection based here in Whitby. In addition to these eye-catching graphics, we’ll display wartime memorabilia, ephemera and militaria from the WWI era. Craig Wildman will give special insight into his collection and the posters on November 20 at 7PM. The show runs until November 23. Not to be missed!

September 23, 2014

Join me for an Art Talk tomorrow (Wednesday) at  7:00 PM at the Abbozzo Gallery in Toronto.


Never has the intersection of art and film been as pronounced as today. Join Station Gallery Curator, Olexander Wlasenko, in an exploration of visual art and cinema. Wlasenko addresses the influence of moving images on still imagery and vice versa…


I’m very excited to share some recent findings in movies…

Wednesday, September 24 @ 7pm


Abbozzo Gallery

401 Richmond Street West, Suite 128

Toronto, ON    416-260-2220


September 17, 2014

“There’s something I haven’t mentioned to anyone, yet…” confessed the Ukrainian President, Petro Poroshenko, to the large crowds gathered on Parliament Hill earlier today, “This is my first visit to Canada!” He was certainly made to feel at home by the warm welcome. Canadians of many ethnic backgrounds including Polish, Belorus, Estonian, Latvian, Lithuanian, Jewish, Hungarian and Crimean Tatars joined with Ukrainian-Canadians in support of a sovereign and independent Ukraine.

Rally for Ukraine

Rally for Ukraine

Following his official address in Parliament, Poroshenko gave a brief, but powerful speech outside on the Hill. The mood was celebratory. And for good reason. This was the day after Ukraine’s Verkhovna Rada (Parliament) voted in favour of EU association. Ukraine’s newly elected President spoke optimistically of future Ukraine-Canadian relations. Following his informal, but well-crafted speech, security staff were caught off-guard as Poroshenko quickened down the steps to greet and shake hands with people. We shook hands as he passed. “Cool!” I thought, “that’s probably the closest I’ll get to a billionaire.”

Poroshenko in Passing

President Poroshenko in Passing

July 15, 2014

It’s official–the theme of this year’s annual members’ exhibition, as chosen by you–“Slice of Life”

2014 Annual Members' Exhibition Themes

This juried exhibition will run at Station Gallery from November 29, 2014 to January 11, 2015.

It’s a fine theme that’s open-ended and versatile. Artists will be invited to present works that sample everyday life and slice-of-life narratives. Words such as naturalism and realism also come to mind. Thanks to everyone for voting. Stay tuned to Station Gallery’s website for submission guidelines and details for the year-end Slice of Life exhibition….

July 7, 2014

It’s that time again… As things heat up, we request your say on the theme of the annual members’ show theme for when things will cool down later this year.

Between November 29, 2014 to January 11, 2015, Station Gallery will host its 22nd annual juried exhibition.

The choice is yours. Which title and theme do you think best suits this year’s show? Stay tuned for next week’s results on July 14.

June 18, 2014

There it is scribbled in my day planner for today’s date: “Morandi died 50 years ago.”

Giorgio Morandi‘s work had a profound impact on me back in 1995 visiting his studio/apartment in Bologna, Italy. His sustained, concentrated contributions to the still life genre remains inspiring. He’s fondly remembered in my mind and in the collective cinematic consciousness. One of his works appears in Fellini’s 1960 “La dolce vita“–admired by the character of Steiner and Marcello Mastroianni pictured below. Morandi embodied the ultimate in cool sophistication and sprezzatura–in all its infinite tones of grey… today we remember Giorgio Morandi!

Morandi in La dolce vita


June 7, 2014

Earlier this morning newly elected, Petro Poroshenko was sworn-in as the fifth President of Ukraine. International heads of state joined in the inauguration proceedings, including the Prime Minister of Canada, Stephen Harper.

For full ceremonies watch here.


May 24, 2014

Toni Latour’s solo exhibition “The Femme Project” opened yesterday at Station Gallery.

Show continues until July 6.


May 9, 2014

I’m in the process of rediscovering Pier Paolo Pasolini’s 1962 masterpiece, Mamma Roma. By way of learning more about this Italian classic, I’ve started researching the locations used in the film. In one scene the young couple Ettore and Bruna meet in a park. The background for their encounter is carefully and fittingly chosen by Pasolini. Two worlds collide. The pair rendezvous among the remains of ancient Rome–specifically the aqueducts of the Aqua Claudia Aqueduct Park.

In the not-so-distant background is the burgeoning Don Bosco quarter of the city. The cityscape is an anonymous wall of apartment blocks. Bruna states that she lives nearby, presumably in the newly built developments. The only identifying feature rising above the background is the domed Basilica di San Giovanni Bosco. The church was under construction when the movie was filmed. Stay tuned for the drawings inspired by this research….

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