SPRING TRAINING - A Group Show

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SPRING TRAINING - A Group Show

An exhibition that celebrates the enduring currency of painting as an artistic medium in a visual landscape dominated by new media technologies. Spring Training features a diverse roster of emerging artists: Tyler Armstrong, Andy Decola, Andre Ethier, Sarah Letovsky, Christina Mazzulla, Darby Milbrath, and Mark Puchala. 

From Puchala’s diagrammatic networks floating on spectral backgrounds that are almost encaustic in their virtual depth to Mazzulla’s Op-arty landscapes with their thick contours and electric hues; from Decola’s pop ornamentalism (with its appropriation of digital technologies and sources) to the no less Pop-inspired portraits of Letovsky, in which the sense of abstraction produced by the studied flatness of the figure is in tension with the pathos of the sitter’s gaze; from Ethier’s oneiric landscapes, with their slightly eerie mix of Impressionist technique and pre-adolescent fantasy, to Milbrath’s no less dreamy celebrations of the female form, with their wry and strangely contemporary references to French nineteenth century painting (Cezanne, Matisse, et alia), to Tyler Armstrong’s portraits in which the contour of a crudely rendered silhouette set dead centre on the canvas is echoed in impasto bands radiating out from the figure like serial haloes so as to create a mood that is two parts Jackson Pollock, one part Edvard Munch, one part Freddy Kruger —in all these works the sheer variety that characterizes contemporary painterly practice in Toronto reveals itself. 

These painters hardly form a group or a school but their work is unified by two things: a willingness, by turns earnest and ironic, to engage the canonical gestures of modernist painting and a capacity to make those gestures resonate in a contemporary visual landscape. 

Opening Reception: April 7th, Onlyone Gallery, 5 Brock Ave  (6pm - 9pm)