red circular sticker on a window, marking a gallery that is participating in contact photography festival

It’s almost May and that means that the Scotiabank CONTACT Photography Festival is just around the corner. Some of the participating galleries are already showing their CONTACT exhibits so I paid them a visit. Along the way, there were a couple of other galleries so I checked them out too.

below: Some artwork created by Chris Curreri is being exhibited at the Daniel Faria Gallery.    This ‘man’ stands alone in the corner, in fact he stands alone in the room.   It is called ‘Christopher’ and it is hand puppet, hollow and lifeless, and waiting for its ventriloquist.  ‘Ventriloquist’ is the name of the whole exhibit.

a mannequin top, of a bald man, on a frame with black loose fitting clothes, stands on a red carpets facing the corner, nothing else is in the room

below: There are some Curreri photographs on the walls and they are all of animal entrails….  a bit gruesome (and on the gallery website).  Exhibits lasts until the 1st of June.

three people stand in a large open gallery space, looking at a large red piece on the floor, two hands, and two feet, fill the four corners, and a black harness connects them through the center, a photo is on the wall beside them - it is of entrails. It is the work of Chris Curreri

below:  At the Clint Roenisch Gallery there are some paintings by Dorian Fitzgerald, some large and some very small.   I thought that I had more photos than these but, sorry, they will have to do.  The large one at the back is of fish swimming among coral.  The seven small pictures on the side wall are very detailed paintings in black and white.  Exhibit lasts until 18th May.

a large horizontal painting on a beige wall, of fish and coral in an aquarium, also some smaller paintings in black and white along the side wall

below: The wonderful work of Emmanuel Monzon hangs on the walls of the Robert Kananaj Gallery (but only until the 4th of May).

three paintings by Emmanuel Monzon on a wall in gallery, pictures of empty places, or where urban sprawl seems to take over deserted places

below: The quality of his photographs is much better than this!  The graininess of this photo is my fault.

a large frames photo on a wall of rock formation in Monument Valley USA with a stop sign in the foreground

below:  In a room at the Arsenal Contemporary Gallery is a display of Caroline Monnet’s work titled ‘A Whole Made of Many Parts’.  One wall is covered with this intricate black and white pattern.  In the middle is a video monitor showing kaleidoscope-like movements of more black and white patterns.

a wall covered with black and white pattern, a video monitor in the middle of a wall playing a video of more black and white patterns

below:  From the gallery website, “In a new series of ‘Fragment’ portraits, Monnet has developed individualized masks that overlay the faces of chosen subjects. Mixing facial features with geometric shapes, new identities are forged through abstraction and interference.” 

portrait of a man wearing a clear cube over his face. cube has black geometric drawings all over it so part of man's face is obscured

part of a monitor on a papered wall with a reflection in the monitor as well as an intricate pattern in blue

below: Sharing space with Arsenal, is the Division Gallery. At the moment, and until 8th June, they are featuring the work of Alex McLeod.  Division is aligned with Galerie Division in Montreal and they share the same website.

two pictures on a gallery wall by Alex McLeod. One is white shapes on turquoise and the other is pinks, oranges and yellows on blue like a landscape from above

below: McLeod’s work is colourful and playful.

two little lumpy statues, one blue and the other green, on a white podium, in the background are two photographs, one in reds and the other in brownish orange shades

below: This is from a video (which can be seen on McLeod’s website).  In my opinion, it was the highlight of the show.

ornate circular shapes like beads and flowers in shades of blue and purple on a black background, a video playing on a wall

below: “Deux Soeurs Qui Ne Sont Pas Soeurs” is one of the videos by Beatrice Gibson now playing at Mercer Union. A photograph doesn’t do it justice.

picture from a video, a woman's reflection in the side mirror of a car, long hair, long dangly ear rings

below: On display outside Mercer Union is, Joi T. Arcand’s “i was born with butter in my mouth” (2019). Arcand is from Muskeg Lake Cree Nation, Saskatchewan.

a poster on display on an exterior wall. Mercer Union Contemporary Art Gallery

Locations:
1. The following galleries are on St. Helens Ave – Daniel Faria, Clint Roenisch, and Robert Kananaj.    There is another gallery there, TPW, but it was closed because they are setting up their next exhibit (opening 4th May).
2. Mercer Union is on Bloor, just east of Lansdowne station
3. Arsenal Contemporary Gallery and Division Gallery share space on Ernest Avenue (close to West Toronto Railpath)

***

below: Playing with reflections.  ‘Christopher’ by Chris Curreri reflected by an interior window at Daniel Faria Gallery.

reflections in a window, vague shape of a man, blue background on top and orangey brown on the bottom

a red exit sign lights up a dark doorway, all red

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