Category Archives: Contemporary Art

BLACKBONES by Julie Jenkinson

Blackbones Soon_FNL_2

Julie Jenkinson is a British born artist and designer living in Toronto. Best known for her Animaze Collection of luxury wallpaper, pajamas and fabrics. BLACKBONES, her new collection of primitive modern sculptural jewellery and objects will be launched at VERSO Gallery in the fall, 2015.

Janet Macpherson: Mirabilia


Janet Macpherson: Mirabilia
A new collection of ceramic objects.

May 30-June 21, 2015
Opening May 30 from 2-4 PM.

This new collection of ceramic objects invites an encounter with the marvelous,
the monstrous, and the hybrid. It alludes to links between wonder, pleasure and the human appetite for the rare and the strange. Hybrid beings force us to the limits of our understanding, as they present us with two things happening simultaneously. They are constantly in flux, uniting and diverging at the same time.
– Janet Macpherson

Janet Macpherson earned her Bachelor degree in philosophy from York University,
and studied ceramics at Sheridan College. She holds an MFA from The Ohio State University. She has been the recipient of a research grant from The Canada Council for the Arts, the 2013 Winifred Shantz Award for Ceramics, and the RBC Emerging Artists Studio Set-up Award presented by Craft Ontario. Macpherson has shown her work nationally and internationally. This is her first solo show in Canada. Janet currently
lives and works in Toronto.

Image: Perch, 2014. Porcelain. h. 13cm x l. 16cm x d. 9cm
Photo, Ryan Legassicke

Nathan Eugene Carson tagging at AGO

Boy In Progress_Nathan Carson
Visit the Italia Galleria tomorrow night at the AGO’s First Thursdays Event “Close Encounters, where artist, Nathan Eugene Carson and 5 other artists will be tagging 300 bright orange notebooks to be given away on a first come, first served basis.

Nathan’s solo painting exhibition will be held at VERSO Gallery, October 2015.

image: a boy in progress, Nathan Eugene Carson, 2014

Nathan Carson Live Drawing at Basquiat Opening

We’re so pleased for Nathan! He’s been chosen to live draw at the
opening for BASQUIAT at the AGO tomorrow night 7:30-10:30.

Irresistible Bowness: ART REVIEW


Artist makes whimsical marvels from organic materials


MICHAEL BOWNESS at Verso Gallery (1160 Queen West), to December 24. 416-533-6362. Rating: NNNN

The white Pierrot face of artist Arnaud Maggs, painted delicately on tiny pieces of paper affixed to open walnut shells, is just one of the understated marvels in Michael Bowness’s tidy, compact show, Nutty.

This portrait (or, rather, portraits) of Maggs, a long-time associate and friend, bears witness to a lifelong practice of making subtle assemblages and sculptural objects that wear their whimsy gracefully.

Bowness subjects organic objects from around Toronto to contextual sleight of hand.

He positions water-worn bricks fished out of lake Ontario with bits of wire, morphing them into odd little proto-animals. Fallen from a 19th-century foundry long since demolished, the bricks also speak to the creative repurposing that drives the ecology of the city.

The walnut shell series makes up half the show, the objects in wall-mounted glass cases bringing Joseph Cornell’s dream boxes to mind. In 12th Of Never, crisp hand-twisted paper numbers nestle in individual shells. It’s both cryptic and formally precise, taking us back to a point where number intersects with figuration.

In Beaver Lodge, inverted shells stand in for the fat bodies of beavers swimming on a printed blue lake. It’s a scene that borrows heavily from the artsy-crafty chic of the DIY 70s, serving as an aesthetic time capsule. It’s also strangely pleasing and unmistakably Canadian.

The show’s modest scale means these tiny, carefully constructed objects are easy to miss. On further scrutiny, however, they’re impossible to overlook.

Image: Michael Bowness. Arnaud. Walnuts, dental plaster, ink. 2014

Michael Bowness: Show Extended

beaverlodge-2 copy
Michael Bowness, NUTTY:
Show extended until December 24.
Beaver Lodge, 2014
Walnut shells, birch bark, pastel.
31×31 inches framed.

VERSO Gallery & INabstracto Present: Michael Bowness

12thofnever-for wordpress

Nutty — 
New constructs by Michael Bowness
November 20 – Show Extended until December 24
Opening: Thursday, November 20 from 6-8 p.m.

 is a show of constructs by Michael Bowness. Using one of the earliest foods consumed by primitive man, Michael uses walnut shells as his “canvas” alongside a collection of found stone sculptures.

Artist Biography
Michael Bowness was born in 1937 off the coast on England in the Irish Sea on a small island called Walney. He was fifteen years old when his family emigrated to Ottawa as his father was made Assistant Director of Submarines for Canada.

Michael graduated from the Ontario College of Art in 1967 winning the Bronze Medal for Proficiency in his year. His career as an Art Director, Illustrator, and Sculptor spans over 35 years and he has been honored with many awards, including a Juno for Best Album Cover and a contributor to the book “Caribou and the Barren Land” which won a Governor General’s Award.

Michael lives in Toronto. He enjoys riding a bicycle, walking, and, eating walnuts.

Image: 12th of Never

Moe Casino, The Neon Series

Moe Casino CAL_1960

Moe CasinoCalifornia 1960 from The Neon Series. 2014
Acrylic on panel, 48″ x 36″. INQUIRE
Currently at VERSO Gallery/INabstracto.

The Burt Bacharach Series

Burt Bacharach_VERSO_1_LR

The Burt Bacharach Series,
Paintings by Kurt Swinghammer
Acrylic on canvas, 14×14″. $500/each.
VERSO Gallery/INabstracto

New Arrivals: Red Canoe Series

K Swinghammer_Canoe_1_LR

Kurt Swinghammer, The Red Canoe Series
Just Arrived: Two new 48″ pieces and a  24″x24″ (above)

The Red Canoe Series is an ongoing body of work in which the
composition remains unchanged, but the colour relationships of
the water are unique each time. The initial inspiration was to find
an image that related to landscape painter Tom Thomson,
who was the subject of a song cycle that I wrote and recorded
called Turpentine Wind. One of my goals was to depict an iconic
Canadian subject matter in a contemporary manner.

—Kurt Swinghammer

Kurt Swinghammer is a Toronto-based musician/visual artist. He has established a diverse career as a singer/songwriter, film composer for CBC’s
The Nature Of Things, session guitarist for artists including Ani DiFranco, Serena Ryder, and Royal Wood, producer for Ron Sexsmith, co-writer with
x-Bahaus Goth icon Peter Murphy, art director of music videos for rapper Maestro Fresh Wes, illustrator of a children’s book by Stompin Tom Connors,
T-shirt designer/ artist for Barenaked Ladies, CD cover designer for The Art Of Time Ensemble, Stuart McLean, and The African Guitar Ensemble, and wardrobe designer for the jazz group The Shuffle Demons. He has been the cover story of NOW Magazine, Artist Of The Week on Bravo’s Arts Minds, and is represented in the permanent collection of the Canada Council Art Bank. He has won Best Local Guitarist in the annual NOW Magazine Reader’s Poll. In 2012 he was the first Artist In Residence at The National Music Center in Calgary, and is currently an artist endorsed by the legendary synthesizer company Moog Music.

Works available: Red Canoe Series, 2014. Acrylic on canvas.
48” x 48”  and 24” x 24”