Press: 2 and a Half Men (or Colin Engle) Featured on Mousse


Our current group exhibition 2 and a Half Men (Or Colin Engle) was featured on Mousse Magazine’s blog.

Exhibition extended until January 17, 2015

Ryan Foerster
Lukas Geronimas
Jesse Harris
Shawn Kuruneru
2 And a Half Men (Or Colin Engle)
November 21 – January 17, 2015

For more information please contact the gallery:
+1 (647) 347-3316

Press: 2 And A Half Men (Or Colin Engle) Reviewed by NOW Magazine


Our current group exhibition was reviewed in NOW Magazine.

The current group show at Cooper Cole is a class reunion of sorts. New York City-based Ontarians Ryan Foerster, Lukas Geronimas and Shawn Kuruneru have returned to collaborate with Toronto’s Jesse Harris. Starting with the initial premise that every work would be 6 inches apart, they gradually refined their spatial dynamics, carving out niches for their work throughout the space.

Geronimas uses objects in a way that underscores their ambivalence. At the front of the gallery, his tub, seemingly cast in pewter, is carved and scratched over with scrawls and figures that bring to mind the scarred desks and bathroom stalls of grubby city life, inviting us to bathe in their imagery.

Harris appropriates the vintage language of advertising and signage. Recontextualized in acid greens and yellows, his pieces practically seethe with gleeful menace. He shares the wall with photographer Foerster, who overlays decayed photographic images with layers of vinyl in primary colours. Both feel like urban surfaces organically accrued and rubbed raw over time.

Once given to dense and surreally noirish pen drawings, Kuruneru here is iconic and spare. His three canvases form a triptych on the west wall: the central one bears a near pictogram of a Chinese man on a boat with a crane, flanked by two splattered with thin washes of black paint in the manner of a Chinese brush painting.

By organically filling the space, the four show a common preoccupation: a fascination with surfaces and objects subjected to the natural processes of time. The image, it seems, is less a concrete thing to be observed than an accretion of several shifting layers, caught at a particular point in flux.

For more information please contact the gallery:
+1 (647) 347-3316

Press: Jesse Harris at the Museum of Contemporary Canadian Art


Gallery artist Jesse Harris is currently exhibiting in a group exhibition at the Museum of Contemporary Canadian Art.

His artwork (pictured above) has been favourably mentioned in several reviews of the exhibition.

Canadian Art
Globe and Mail
Toronto Star

For more information about Jesse Harris please contact the gallery:
+1 (647) 347-3316

Press: Georgia Dickie Reviewed by the Toronto Star


Gallery artist Georgia Dickie had her current show reviewed in The Toronto Star.

How big can Georgia Dickie get, and how fast? The 25-year-old Toronto artist, through no fault of her own, has been testing those limits with increasing intensity the past couple of years as she piles up museum exhibitions (Oakville Galleries, the Museum of Contemporary Canadian Art, the Power Plant) and critical acclaim (guilty) at a dizzying rate.

That’s likely because it’s well deserved. Dickie is part of a youthful cohort in the city who have a shared enthusiasm for simple materials, but I’m not sure any of them match her unbound, intuitive joy.

Her current show at Cooper Cole shows you exactly what I mean. Dickie lives underneath a scrap heap of found objects and weirdo castoffs — for at least a couple of years, a coffinlike box with a prosthetic ear stuck to it has lived in her studio — and it often seems like her practice is founded on an urgent need to recombine them into something close enough to art that she can shove them out the door. One work in the show says as much: a gleeful swoop of wire balanced on a short pile of wood, porcelain and plastic is called “Everything Out at Once.”

Not every work teases so explicitly, and Dickie’s humour often reigns — another standout, a teetering snarl of pipe balanced on a wooden disc, is called “God Makes No Mistakes (Loretta Lynn)” — but herein lies the engine of her remarkably dynamic, idiosyncratic works.

You can see them as sculpture, which they absolutely are (she has sense of material, proportion and scale that would do any classicist proud), and there’s a sly Minimalist name check to much of what she does, with her coils of copper pipe and other workaday castoffs. But her compositions are so enigmatically beguiling that, far from the cool materialism of her forebears, they exude a lovable, forthright charm.

Dickie’s works are forced out to fend for themselves in a world where their function, as art or anything else, is to be determined. It’s a nice little reflection of their creator, who seems to use her array of objects and the mash-ups they become as a proxy for making sense of things in a much, much bigger sense for herself — something she, like any of us, struggles with mightily. With her progeny let loose in the world to find their own way, she might just be assembling an army of fellow travellers for us all.

- Murray White

To see the full article please visit The Toronto Star.

For more information about Georgia Dickie please contact the gallery:
+1 (647) 347-3316

Press: As a Body Reviewed by NOW Magazine


Our current exhibition As a Body, guest curated by Kari Cwynar, received a review from NOW Magazine.

Cooper Cole’s themed show addressing the body features works by contemporary women artists, all of them internationally recognized but many showing in Canada for the first time.

The front window is occupied by Lauren Luloff’s batik-inspired male nude. Painting with bleach on a bed sheet, she gives the male figure a casual exoticism reminiscent of Matisse’s odalisques. Seeing the male figure treated this way makes you wonder why it doesn’t happen more often.

Columbia graduate Mira Dancy, whose loose, expressionism-inflected figures paradoxically emerge with an effortlessness that comes from obsessive practice, is fascinated by contemporary folk magic. Her large-scale triangular cloth piece is based on a hoodoo wrist charm, infusing women’s long history of soothsaying and charm-making with a bold, painterly sensibility.

A triptych of portraits on leather hides by Allison Katz catches subjects in moments of sad contemplation. Ghosts of past illustrative traditions – fashion illustration and sign painting most consistently – haunt her work, making the emotional depth in her figures all the more arresting.

Staring through the batik nude in the window, you can see to Jody Rogac’s semi-nude photo of a young woman on the back wall. Naked from the waist down, feet planted firmly, the woman’s expression remains guarded and unreadable.

Holding the show together are Jenine Marsh’s glistening ceramic tongues, playfully scattered throughout the space. Given that the human tongue covers such a broad range of activity, they are fitting mascots for the show. 

To see the full review please visit NOW Magazine.

For more information about As a Body please contact the gallery:
+1 (647) 347-3316

Press: Sara Cwynar Reviewed by Frieze Magazine


Gallery artist Sara Cwynar had her recent show in New York reviewed in Frieze Magazine.

Sara Cwynar’s artist’s book, Kitsch Encyclopedia (2014), patches together the writings of Roland Barthes, Jean Baudrillard and Milan Kundera in an attempt to cata­logue a world completely coated in a layer of kitsch. Cwynar draws her definition of the term from Baudrillard’s Simulacra and Sim­ulation (1981), which defines kitsch as a manifestation of the ‘hyperreal’ – simulations of the world that have started to matter more than the reality they represent. Cuckolded by its own image, reality is reduced to what Baudrillard calls a ‘fetish of the lost object – no longer object of representation, but ecstasy of degeneration and of its own ritual extermination: the hyperreal.’

Kitsch Encyclopedia provides the theoretical basis for Cwynar’s latest body of work, ‘Flat Death’ (2014), a collection of photographs that exacts a kind of ‘ritual extermination’ upon the hyperreal by confusing representation and reality. The show was anchored by two large prints from ‘Contemporary Floral Arrangements’ (2014), a series in which the artist enlarges found illustrations of elaborate bouquets segment by segment, then manually tapes together the various sections to form a flat surface. On top of this newly reconstituted picture, Cwynar carefully covers the original contours of the blooms with assorted colour-coded knick-knacks, and photographs the composition from above. Technically novelty items, the objects – which range from birthday cake candles, hotel soaps, remote controls, pencil sharpeners, trading cards and pill boxes to Scrabble tiles and a button boasting ‘Japanese Americans for Reagan/Bush’ – register as more nostalgic than new, leaving no true clues as to when the photographs may have been taken.

Across the gallery, Cwynar presented excerpts from multiple series, hung side-by-side in simple black frames, almost like a filmstrip. If there was a narrative, however, its tale was of how a flat image of an object can be transformed into a 3D object itself, only to later return to two dimensions as a photograph. Starting with found or staged pictures, Cwynar’s images are then scanned, enlarged, cropped, reconstituted, repopulated, rephotographed, and reprinted. The artist makes no attempt to disguise her interventions. The distortions of the ‘Darkroom Manual’ series (2013–14) result from direct interference with the scanning of diagrams sampled from a how-to book for budding photographers. (The effect is akin to the exaggerated static seen interrupting important broadcasts in cartoons.) For Toucan In Nature (Post It Notes) (2013), Cwynar took a snapshot of the tropical bird and surrounded it with a foliage of green highlighter tabs, photographing the resulting collage. The ‘Plastic Cups’ (2014) series begin as sculptures: towers of plastic plates and tumblers set against the backdrop of a crude blue tarpaulin. Cwynar photographs and enlarges the images, but then adds references to historical architecture, via grainy photos of Corinthian columns or Islamic domes. She prints out each image in black and white segments, covering the seams with short strips of brightly coloured tape that align like crosshairs over the focal point of
the final photograph.

While the layers of Cwynar’s imagery can be picked apart, the photographs resist being pinned to a time or place. The black and white portions of the ‘Plastic Cups’ encourage a comparison to historical documents but, even when left in colour, the pictures elude exact dating through their casual use of modernist kitchenware. This leaves the enigma of the title: ‘Flat Death’, two terms Scotch-taped into a vexed juxtaposition. The first term is troubled by the fact that, while the images the artist ultimately presents are flat, they remain aggressive advertisements for their brief existence as 3D objects; the second by the fact that, while reality may be finite, the hyperreal can never truly die, it merely gives way to other representations. The true mystery, then, is how Cwynar makes these longstanding observations feel so contemporary.

- Kate Sutton

To see the full article please visit Frieze Magazine.

For more information about Sara Cwynar please contact the gallery:
+1 (647) 347-3316

Press: Mark DeLong Essay on The Rusty Toque

Rusty Toque Logo

Gallery artists Mark DeLong was recently profiled on The Rusty Toque.

I was recently told that the American artist Kerry Tribe has described the making and presentation of artwork as a “tiny bit radical”–radical in that making and exhibiting art is tied into slowness and contemplation, things that are not popular in the contemporary culture we’re living in.

When I first met Mark around eight years ago, he was making work that was somewhat popular in Vancouver, or at least the sort of thing you might see around. Artists like Jason McLean and Keith Higgins and Marc Bell had become sort of West Coast affiliates of a Royal Art Lodge methodology, but made unique in a Pacific Northwest way in which their drawings were not twee, or precious, but more psychedelic and intuitive; messy and unpretentious. Some of those artists are still making some of that work. That is just fine.

Mark’s work now consists of ceramics and abstract paintings. Completely abstract paintings. No wishy-washy abstract figuration, zero ‘investigation’ into anything. He’s just picked up a Modernist interest and run with it. Because I suppose there is still more, at least as far as he can see, to be done with Abstract Expressionism, or just Abstract painting, or Action Painting, Automatisme. The only other male artist that I know of working with ceramics is Grayson Perry, who was momentarily popular and won the Turner Prize for his fairy tale type ceramic works, usually decorated vases. They were quite beautiful. I don’t hear much about him now. But Grayson Perry presented as a cross-dresser. He picked up his cheque for the Turner Prize in a gaudy, campy dress, accompanied by his wife. So inherent in his work were multiform gender issues, I suppose. Ceramic being women’s work, ostensibly. Perry’s ceramics in that regard were political, whether he/she intended them to be or not. If you make ceramic vases, and you walk around East London in a wedding dress, people will obviously start to make connections about gender politics, male v. female art–I don’t know exactly what point he was trying to make if any, but his manner suggested a politicization of his product.

Mark is a father of two. He has large muscles. He is working class. And he makes ceramics, egg shaped ceramics, wonky bizarre ceramics that look like oversized versions of what a child might make (in the 1970’s) as an ashtray for their parents in art class. They are very beautiful. They’re neither feminine nor masculine. They’re artefacts he makes by hand. The need to even attach gender labels to the production of art in 2013 seems unnecessary. It’s been covered. Boring. It could be said then, that Mark, as a heterosexual male, working class father of two, producing ceramics that are fragile and delicate, is somewhat radical. Denying the idea of this ‘craft’ being the sole domain of female artists.

But this isn’t the case. What is inherently radical about Mark’s work is his complete and utter disinterest in any of these issues. He’s making sculptures post-gender. Essentially with each ceramic he is creating a product which communicates the idea that the issue has been dealt with. I think Mark works in ceramic because he’s found that he enjoys doing it, that he’s good at it, and that sometimes, a ceramic egg is the most appropriate vehicle with which to deliver whatever aesthetic he’s interested in at the moment. So in this sense to me the work is radical, in that he is so far removed from the politics of the work he makes. It is a radicalism of complete nonchalance and disinterest. He’s not saying this work is not female work, or hey look I’m a man making work primarily designated to be created by female artists; what he is saying (or rather doing)–is demonstrating that ceramic is a very nice way for an artist to make art. Regardless of what’s inside your pants. An egalitarian gesture which denies the issue even being relevant anymore. To me this is a radical gesture.

Again with his paintings. There aren’t a whole lot of people making fast abstract paintings right now. Save the few who have become re-interested in minimalism, and again are using the most awful word in contemporary art: “investigation”. There are many artists who are still, seeming to not understand that DeKoonig dealt with this half a century ago, dabbling in abstract figuration. Look here’s an abstract painting, but wait! I see a face in it! Cicely Brown likes to bury her pornography in abstract painting. It’s a bit of a Where’s Waldo trope. There are words for this in psychology. Apophenia is the experience of seeing meaningful patterns in random data. More specifically, Pareidolia is literally what children do when they look for anthropomorphic imagery in clouds. What do you see in the sky honey? I see a bear Mommy etc. In fact it’s just water vapour, but you need to keep your kids entertained. There is a surfeit of this work being made right now, and in the recent past, so my contention is that there is no need to make more of it.

I feel that making completely abstract paintings right now is compelling, in that everyone thought that was all over. Looking at Mark’s work I imagine they are mostly done in a day, one sitting. The white is raw canvas. If I were forced to compare them to any genre, I would say that he is making Ab-Ex paintings. Some look like early Albert Oehlen paintings, and some look a bit like Stuart Davis (I realize both are not Abstract Expressionists)–but Mark somehow, even if there is a minute resemblance to those artist’s work, has managed to morph his own into what look like good old Clement Greenberg approved Abstract Expressionism. So some people might say that in 2013, to reengage with Abstract Expressionism is a radical gesture. Again this is not what I feel is radical about the work.

Ab-Ex art extolled the artist as mystical shaman, a serious thinker, tortured (Mark is hilarious), heavily involved in Poetics and Eastern Religion and just having an awful time in their head feeling quite tortured and unhappy. All the weeping in front of Rothko, even he had to kill himself. If you’ve spent time at Mark’s house, it’s not the Cedar Tavern. It’s a good time. The only visible clock is Garfield, his googly eyes trailing you all over the room like Mona Lisa and his tail swinging back and forth like a pendulum. I don’t see much angst in his life. He does not appear to be tortured. I don’t think he is suggesting his hand is a conduit between the canvas and God.

Here are the titles of some Cy Twombly paintings (mystical genius, exiled in Rome, multi-million dollar paintings, born in the wrong century, cliché cliché cliché…)

Leda and the Swan
Venere Franchetti (completely washed out painting that looks like it took about two hours)
The Bacchus Series
The Supplement, 2006 – Sotheby’s Estimate 8 – 12 million USD
Bacchus Psilax (?)
Sunset Gaeta
Ferragosto III
Nine Discourses on Commodus
Untitled (Bolsena)
Quattro Staggionia
Poems to the Sea (how will they hear these poems?)

Why does Cy use Italian so much? Everyone knows he was born in Lexington Virginia! But, don’t get me wrong. Cy Twombly is a very good, important painter, and influenced many people. Without Twombly there would have been no Jean Michel Basquiat. His work is important. I like it. It’s messy and strange, drippy, hastily crafted, and once in a while he likes to write a word on the picture from some Greek Myth or something out of Dante. That’s fair, there was a time for that. But in doing so, he was, like Jackson Pollock, an exemplar of the artist as Gnostic and Mystic and Guru on the Mount.

Here are the titles of some of Marks’ paintings, which are messy, and sometimes drippy, and hastily crafted, and full of dashes and blotches of strange colour and weird forms and confusing geometry;

Dan is So Stupid
Tall Grass no Phone
Portrait of Mick Jagger (completely washed out abstract painting that looks like it took about two hours)
Lady Baltimore
Pour me out the Window
Excellent Service
The Branch hit the Window
Grapes (there is no purple or green in this painting)

Twombly notoriously lived in a castle outside of Rome. He had a lot of statuary. The gardens were sublime. Long strolls reading Diogenes in the original Greek. Perhaps an obscure tailor made hat, the name of which only a handful of people in the world can pronounce.

Mark lives in a coach house in Strathcona. Next to his front door is a framed photograph of the actor Denzel Washington. DFW. David Foster Wallace? Denzel Fucking Washington!

On its surface the work is straight Ab-Ex painting. But the radical nature of what Mark is doing lies in the way he undercuts the arch-seriousness and pomposity of that genre of work with his titles. Dan is So Stupid could be called Elegy in Green and Yellow, For the People of Pompeii, something in Greek, For Frank O’Hara, Eulogy at the Funeral of Holofernes. But it’s not. It’s called Dan is So Stupid. I know Dan, he’s not. And again, if Mark were consciously trying to undercut and satirize the mystic self importance of rich white male abstract painters from America in the 1950’s, there would be an angle there to explore, a hook for people to hold onto. But I don’t believe that’s what he’s doing at all. So again the work is radical in its absolute and complete indifference to the history of the very painting he’s working on.

It occurs to me that this might appear that I am saying that Mark is naïve. He’s not. He is a self-taught artist, this might be why his work is so good. He isn’t encumbered by the manifold expectations of the audience, worried about the issues inherent in his work, concerned with awful things like investigating, and interrogating painting. Self taught is best taught. Mark is a smart guy. That intelligence is apparent in his complete and total dismissal of ‘issues’ in art. Art about issues, it doesn’t work. What we’re doing is Visual Art. Does it succeed visually is really the only issue that matters. And Mark’s work does succeed visually. He makes very beautiful work.

The possibility exists that his paintings and ceramics can be viewed as political, but that’s not his fault. Don’t blame Mark for that. The beauty of art is it’s polysemic nature in which everyone’s reaction is a correct reaction, and the intention of the artist in completely irrelevant. Political art tends to be stultifyingly boring. And rarely succeeds as visual art. You really only need to look at one Barbara Kruger to understand all of her work. This is not to discredit her work. Felix Gonzales Torres made political work that was beautiful to look at. Mark however isn’t a woman struggling to be noticed in a male dominated New York art world, Mark isn’t a gay artist who has died of AIDS. The politics of a middle class white male living in a world class city; there’s not much to work with there, and were he to attempt to approach it from that angle, it would be tired white guilt, or amelioration, or apology art. The reason that Mark’s work is unique and interesting is because he is doing it the old fashioned way. Because he has to, because he enjoys it, and because he does it well. And in 2013, to make work from this position, is also a tiny bit radical.

Brad Phillips – January 24, 2013

To see the full article please visit the The Rusty Toque.

For more information about Mark DeLong please contact the gallery:
+1 (647) 347-3316

Press: Vanessa Maltese Reviewed By Magenta Magazine


Gallery artist Vanessa Maltese had her recent show at the gallery was reviewed in the latest issue of Magenta Magazine.

For her first solo exhibition at this gallery, Toronto-based Vanessa Maltese, who has made a name for herself as a painter of sharp and smart abstractions, put aside her brushes and presented a minimal, yet surprisingly gallery-filling, installation. With a few deceptively simple gestures, Maltese’s installation, The Compleat Gamester, lead me down a couple of interpretative paths.

First, the installation felt like a piece of institutional critique, a sly look at the idea of being ‘allowed’ to interact with art, and how we approach artworks physically and psychologically within the white cube. Observing gallery-goers during the show’s run revealed the level of discomfort some feel in such spaces. Towards the front of the gallery, Maltese seemingly placed a barrier that stopped some people in their tracks. This ‘impediment’ was nothing more than a grey strip of wood with the outline of hands cut into either end lying on the gallery floor. It could have been stepped over easily, but people paused, pulling back their children or picking up their dogs, wondering if they were permitted to proceed through the installation.

Of course, we were expected to step into the installation, the middle of which contained yellow billiard balls, clustering on the gallery floor, and two large, red silhouettes of men’s profiles hanging across from each other. Once ’inside’, I couldn’t help looking at the display as a metaphor for the art world, the billiard balls amassing in some areas of the floor – like dealers, artists, curators and collectors grouping together in major centres, and forming cliques within them – and the two large profiles as the art world’s gate-keepers – the blue-chip galleries, superstar artists, and jet-setting curators and collectors, making the decisions on what art will be sold, made, seen and purchased, and thereby deemed ‘important’. Standing in the middle of this large ‘game board’, it also crossed my mind that both New York’s Chelsea gallery district and Las Vegas’s casino strip are full of ‘dealers’ – speculating on art on a par with trying your luck at the poker table.

Considering the billiard balls further, it also occurred to me that the gallery containing Maltese’s installation is in the middle of Toronto’s rapidly gentrifying Little Portugal neighbourhood. Once home to dozens of smoky and somewhat dingy men’s clubs (containing pool tables, of course), the storefronts now contain galleries, hip bars, coffee shops and restaurants, and independent clothing and design retailers catering to the young couples and families moving into the area. It seems the rules of the games we’re made to play – whether in the art circles we’re part of or the neighbourhoods we frequent – are always changing.

To see the full article please visit Magenta.

For more information about Vanessa Maltese please contact the gallery:
+1 (647) 347-3316

Press: Brie Ruais Featured in Magenta Magazine


Brie Ruais had her recent show at the gallery reviewed in the latest issue of Magenta Magazine.

As technology expands its relentless infiltration into our everyday lives, experience itself becomes increasingly linked to some form of technological interface. The way we see the world, the world of language and of things, and how these things are seen and absorbed, is rapidly changing. First-hand experience of an event or an object is rapidly becoming replaced by the second-hand experience of viewing via monitors. Flat, weightless, sensually deprived projections on a screen that have the removed presence of a spectre or apparition. Broken souls with no mass or volume representing a complete removal or relegation of the body.

With these thoughts running through my mind on a drizzly Saturday, it was refreshing to come across a work titled Nearly Torn Away (2013) by American sculptor Brie Ruais at Toronto’s Cooper Cole. The work, a large rough circular ring composed of glazed ceramic, is explicitly about the body and emphatic about its connection to it. Clay is perhaps one of those artist materials that most effectively reflects the interface of body and action, recording and preserving directly the physical impressions made upon it. These interactions could not be more explicit in this work. The artist begins with a block of clay (measured to match her own personal weight) and frames her ensuing activity with a directive or set of instructions, a basic formal strategy that informs the physical, performative aspect of the work. “Push clay in two directions from a central starting point” or “push it out from the centre as far as it will go.” The end result is a physical manifestation of the aforementioned prescribed actions, traces and impressions of direct human contact.

From across the gallery, the piece resembles a rusted metal ring, a blown-up version of something you might find embedded in an asphalt road, repeatedly run over and subjected to years of elemental abuse. As you approach, however, the impressions and details of touch become more and more apparent. Beyond primitive, the work exudes a sort of basic primordial exuberance, reveling in its own simplicity and directness. It touches on all those things contemporary life seems to be in the practice of shedding. In its simplicity and directness, Nearly Torn Away represents a desire for an increased awareness of our own physical selves and a desire to represent this awareness in a tangible, non-reproducible object, which, to be understood, must be seen in person or not seen at all.

To see the full article please visit Magenta.

For more information about Brie Ruais please contact the gallery:
+1 (647) 347-3316

Press: Sara Cwynar Reviewed by New York Times


Gallery artist Sara Cwynar was recently reviewed by Roberta Smith for The New York Times.

The artifice of photography is elastic and alluring, and has allowed many younger artists to build on the achievements of the early-1980s Pictures Generation. Among them is Sara Cwynar — a graphic designer by day, and photo-artist by night — whose witty, visually rich images make an excellent impression here.

Ms. Cwynar’s medium-size works range from simple distortion of found images (achieved by jiggling them as they entered the scanner) to dizzying mixtures of appropriation, photography, rephotography, collage and studio setups. In the making of an image, she works on the horizontal and then on the vertical, slices up and then reassembles her images and also shifts from black and white to color film. It seems that Ms. Cwynar (pronounced SWIN-ar) wants a photograph to be anything but coherently two-dimensional. (Possibly to avoid the “Flat Death” of her show’s title?)

In “Toucan in Nature (Post It Notes),” the bird sits among weirdly stiff, geometric leaves. They are actually covered with hundreds of green Post-it arrows, stuck to the image, which was then rephotographed. Things are further confused by the pieces of masking tape that hold the sheets of the image, which has been cut into a grid, in place.

“Islamic Dome (Plastic Cups),” a shadowy black-and-white image, is even trickier regarding space and process. Its vaguely architectural arrangement of plastic cups and objects is seen against a backdrop of a black garbage bag, but the whole image is visibly seamed, and the seams are joined with little bits of colored tape.

Some of Ms. Cwynar’s images are too simply self-referential, but this show indicates that when it comes to confounding the eye and mind, she has a lot to work with.

Her current exhibition at Foxy Production continues through May 3, 2014.

To see the full post please visit The New York Times.

For more information about Sara Cwynar please contact the gallery:
+1 (647) 347-3316

Press: Sara Cwynar Interview on Aperture


Gallery artist Sara Cwynar was recently interviewed by Christopher Schreck for Aperture about her recent exhibition at the Rosenwald-Wolf Gallery, University of the Arts, Philadelphia.

Blending elements of photography, sculpture, collage, and design, Sara Cwynar’s work explores the processes by which images and objects acquire, change, and lose their meaning over time. In her most recent series, “Flat Death,” the New York—based artist reimagines vernacular images as dense arrangements of found objects. By employing various analog and digital methods of intervention, she produces striking, highly textured imagery that confirms the expressive potential of seemingly archaic materials through the subtle subversion of photographic tropes.

In addition to her recent second monograph, Kitsch Encyclopedia, Cwynar will follow her current exhibition at Rosenwald-Wolf Gallery, Philadelphia with her first solo showing in New York. Flat Death will open at Foxy Production on Friday, April 4th.
Christopher Schreck: Until recently, you were a staff graphic designer at the New York Times Magazine, where you produced the same brand of imagery you’re dealing with in your work. How would you say that experience has informed your practice?

Sara Cwynar: Working at the Times was a really formative experience for me. Producing content for commercial and editorial purposes gave me a much better understanding of the way images work, how they’re affected by context and time. Commercial imagery is really about reflecting a particular moment—some images might stand the test of time, but many become dated almost immediately after they’re made. But I also feel like that’s become complicated by the fact that there seems to be a lot of nostalgia in design and photography right now. There’s a lot of combing through image archives for inspiration, talking about how cool and kitschy and funny these old images are to us now. What’s interesting is that people often don’t seem to think about how the images they’re currently making will inevitably share the same fate. It’s something I try to build into my work now. I like the idea of my pictures embracing that process, of retaining this sense of bad taste, while still being contemporary.

CS: It’s interesting, because while it’s a given that commercial images are both driven and ultimately superseded by these cycles of fashion, it seems to me that artworks often function the same way.

SC: Exactly! I’m very interested in the idea that the highly produced art images we see in galleries are subject to the same degradation in value and taste as anything else—that they can become just another item we use and leave behind. It’s something I actively try to build into my images, where they look at first like simple recastings of throwaway imagery, but then, upon closer inspection, reveal themselves as being something else entirely, almost like a trompe l’œil painting.

All the images we make are subject to some sort of change in value and reading as soon as we put them out into the world. It’s really clear when you look at how images circulate online: they enter the stream and end up in unpredictable places. For example, when you see my pictures at reduced sizes on a screen, you really can’t tell what’s going on. They just look like the original, mundane images, so people might not realize they’re really looking at an intricately composed artwork. If you look at how my work has progressed, my images have been getting denser and denser, and that’s in part because I wanted to make them harder to read in passing, online. My earlier “Color Study” pieces flipped around the internet too easily. There was no reason to think you weren’t getting the full experience of the work by viewing it on the computer—which is fine, since not everyone is in New York and can see the works in person. It’s a different way of experiencing the work. It’s hard to get much information out of a 600-pixel-wide jpeg. So in moving forward, I’ve wanted to make sure that what you’re seeing online is not the whole story.

CS: You seem to be asserting a more pronounced materiality in this body of work: rather than using straight shots or scans as in previous series, many of these latest images were composed like mosaics, with separate sheets connected with colored tape. In other instances, you’ve layered post-it notes or stickers directly onto the print’s surface before re-photographing it. What led you to experiment with these new techniques?

SC: One of the major themes in my work is this idea of construction, which speaks not only to the way I physically combine objects and rebuild images, but also to how photography uses framing to create narratives, and how we as viewers draw meaning from those narratives. I see these new techniques as a literal way of reinforcing these ideas.

With some of these new pieces, I scan the original found image and use InDesign to make a much larger, segmented version of the file. Once that was printed out and arranged on the studio floor, I then re-build the images with various objects and shoot the piece from above. Working this way, I was able to get much deeper into the details and the tones of the original printed matter.

Incorporating these different techniques further confuses what’s already a complicated viewing experience, where each image initially reads as a kind of collage, but upon closer inspection is revealed to be a photograph of a still-life arrangement, a single image rather than multiple parts. The tiling approach allowed me to introduce another imaging technology into the process: these pictures now go from found pieces of printed matter to digital files, to low-quality laser prints, and back to high-quality analog film negatives before they are finally printed.

CS: As you’re composing these still-life arrangements, are you selecting items thematically? Do you expect your audience to find—or to invent—associations between those particular objects or images?

SC: What ties them together isn’t necessarily their specific content, but rather that they show how content and function can change or be lost over time. I think a lot about how these images were once the height of style, or that these objects once served a particular function. They will inevitably lose their relevance and get left behind, but they never physically go away. They’re still around, clogging up household junk drawers and remaining in our collective psyches, and that’s what I’m looking to as my source material.

I’m working with this huge, democratic archive that’s waiting there to be drawn from, making still-lifes from the debris I’ve collected, and re-presenting it all in a contemporary art context. Having said that, it’s also possible that certain aspects of the content might work its way into my pictures. I am drawn to the modernist idealism you find in mid-century printed matter: this sense of optimism that seems foreign, even naïve to us today. If you look through old issues of Life or National Geographic, it’s palpable, and it really captures something about the culture at that time. The same goes for book covers. I like to think that in reconstructing those images, my work might somehow retain that tone, because the truth is that I love this material. The items may be considered “tasteless,” but they genuinely appeal to my own taste, and I like the idea that by resurrecting them as subjects for art, I’m putting them back in “good taste,” so that others might find value in them again.

CS: Your first New York solo show opens at Foxy Production later this week. What can audiences expect from this new set of images?

SC: I really wanted the work in this show to span the tropes of the photographic canon, so I worked with a much broader range of imagery: there are commercial still-lifes, floral arrangements, nature photographs, tourist landmarks, encyclopedia images, printing tests, images from how-to manuals, and, for the first time, portraits. I think it’s a much more comprehensive overview of the medium. I’ve also been experimenting with new ways of approximating the tones of the original printed matter. In the “Display Stand” pictures, for instance, I isolate individual sections of the original image and construct still-lifes of those details using other objects. I then shoot those arrangements, shrink the photos down to 4×6 quick prints, and place them on top of the original image before making the final photograph, combining up to thirty different still-lifes to produce a single work.

To see the full interview please visit Aperture.

For more information about Sara Cwynar please contact the gallery:
+1 (647) 347-3316

Press: Travess Smalley featured in Forbes


Travess Smalley was recently featured in Forbes Magazine’s third annual Top 30 Under 30.

West Virginia-born Smalley blends computer graphics with physical collage-making. His colorful pieces look like a cross between a painting and a screen saver. One piece has Rothko-like stripes in blues, greens and yellows, with what appear to be cut-outs layered on top. He has had solo shows in New York, Toronto and Milan.

To see the full list please visit Forbes.

For more information about Travess Smalley please contact the gallery:
+1 (647) 347-3316

Press: Lauren Luloff Reviewed in The New York Times


Gallery artist Lauren Luloff was recently reviewed in The New York Times by Roberta Smith.

“As a painter, Lauren Luloff excels at the extremes of ideas and touch. Her mongrel conception of her medium — as painting, textile, patchwork collage, punctured surface and abstraction — and her equally confident handling of different materials and techniques, are sometimes more exciting than the results.

Of the collage-paintings in her latest show, the best is “Flame Violet and Golden,” which contrasts dark patterns with an explosion of pink, and was exhibited in a 2012 summer group show at Galerie Lelong in Chelsea, where it knocked me out. Nothing else here quite does that, although most comes close.

Starting with tight, primed muslin, Ms. Luloff applies swaths of patterned fabric that she sometimes finds but usually makes, either by block printing or by drawing with bleach on colored bedsheets. Areas of abstractly worked oil paint are added to some of the spaces between the fabric, as are cuts through the surfaces that may expose stretcher bars or the wire screening behind the muslin.

The range from tight to loose pattern, from pattern to expressive painting, is intriguing in concept, as is the emphasis on a painting as a physical object. But these works are often too arbitrary and random in totality. They lack internal sense, or rigor, especially in the application of the oil paint.

Repeatedly, it is the dark or earthy bleach-drawn patterns and motifs that draw the eye as the freshest, most convincing parts of the paintings, the areas where Ms. Luloff seems most engaged and present.”

For more information about Lauren Luloff please contact the gallery:
+1 (647) 347-3316

Press: Andrea Pinheiro featured in Magenta Magazine

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Gallery artist Andrea Pinheiro was featured in the recent issue of Magenta Magazine.

“In Pinheiro’s practice, as in Antonioni’s film, tacking photos to the wall is a gesture of continuance. Photographs can preserve unnoticed details that observers can discover later; attentive audiences can extend the life of a captured moment. Pinheiro sees that truth and raises it: the image on the wall may continue imparting information, and meanwhile persist in recording.

Often thematizing the receptivity of the photograph, Pinheiro’s work links sensitivity to objecthood. Mutability shows up in materiality; texture implies perpetuity. For the series Safn (2010 – ongoing), the artist painted onto pictures she took of the eponymous gallery space. Enlarged from postcard to poster-size, the applied paint reads almost sculptural.

The brushstrokes are explicitly expressionistic, the photographs implicitly so. Both are personal, and to some degree Safn comprises indexical portraits of the artist. The shots are casual; they are Pinheiro’s spontaneous records: unofficial souvenirs of an experience, preserved by the camera. The paint is her response to the prints, recorded by the brush. Both deliberately retain a certain crudeness.

The marks are elicited by the image, and the photos by the space. The space, in turn, is filled with others’ art. Pinheiro paints With Roth, On Fleury, Over Andre and Neuhaus. To this extent, Safn constitutes a series of unauthorized collaborations with iconic artists, anathematic to the traditional installation view.

Moreover, though, the series documents a synergy between audience and exhibit. Safn is a personal collection, housed in a home: effectively, Pinheiro also collaborated with the collectors. Their practices parallel: like collecting, photographing is a way to express through observation and selection. Both group things together in a context, and it’s this gestalt – the whole gallery – that Pinheiro paints with, on and over: zooming out is as important as blowing up.”

To see the full article please visit Magenta Magazine.

For more information about Andrea Pinheiro please contact the gallery:
+1 (647) 347-3316

Press: NOW Magazine reviews Todd James


NOW Magaine recently reviewed Todd James’ current exhibition.

“Viewers averting their eyes from Miley Cyrus’s tongue at the VMAs would have found her entourage of dancing bears more enjoyable. These were the brainchild of artist Todd James, who’s having his first Canadian solo show of paintings at Cooper Cole.

James, who began his career as a New York City graffiti prodigy named REAS, has collaborated with Eminem and Mobb Deep and done extensive work in production, film and animation. He is also an internationally recognized fine artist.

His ironic street sensibility is in no way dulled in this funny, fierce show of nudes that makes contemporary no-brow culture look nearly refined. James is obviously having fun – lots of it.

It’s a huge and colourful show, and funny as hell. The well-worn bourgeois aesthetics of Picasso and Matisse are weaponized into Tom Wesselmann-flavoured japes: big naked blonds lounging about, surrounded by cats and toting automatic weapons.

Once your laughter subsides, you appreciate James’s immense skill. He almost paints staid knockoffs of respectable modernism, but the palette is a too club-kid neon and there are too many touches of white-trash sass. One woman sports striped 70s tube socks, à la classic centrefold, while hoisting a joint. The cats, looking glum and neurotic, are pure comedy. It’s a little too much for an investment banker’s foyer.

The mashup of genres would be disorienting were they not so seamlessly unified. James parodies his styles with a lightness that betrays a deep immersion in their history: his visual language is as fluent as it is offhand. Like the rappers he’s worked with, his crude, comic patois is a breezy front for a profound, almost reverent literacy.

Pulling off a genre joke this blunt and sophisticated takes both balls and finesse. At the start of a grey Toronto winter, James’s high-octane nudes are an invigorating blast of heat.”

To see the full review please visit NOW MAgazine.

This exhibition continues at the gallery until December 7, 2013.

Click here to see photos of the installation.

Click here to view selected works from this exhibition.

For press and sales information please contact the gallery:
+1 (647) 347-3316

Press: Jeremy Jansen on Dust Magazine


Jeremy Jansen was recently profiled by Dust Magazine.

Jeremy Jansen (b. 1979, Calgary, AB) works primarily in sculpture and photography. His recent exhibitions include “More Than Two (Let It Make Itself),” curated by Micah Lexier (The Power Plant, Toronto), “Untitled” (Cooper Cole, Toronto), “History” (Tomorrow, Toronto) and “Like Minded” (Plug In ICA, Winnipeg). His debut European solo show “Dirty Negative” (La Miroiterie, Paris) featured an accompanying monograph by the same name published by Editions FP & CF. Jansen currently lives and works in Toronto, Canada.

To see the full post please visit Dust Magazine.

For more information about Jeremy Jansen please contact the gallery.

Press: Lavalette in Conversation With Sara Cwynar


Gallery artist Sara Cwynar was recently interviewed on Lavalette.

“Arianne Di Nardo: The title of your latest series, Flat Death, is a term many may recognize from Barthes’ Camera Lucida. How did this concept inform your methodology; moreover, the themes at play in your work?

Sara Cwynar: For Barthes, the other punctum, the “prick” of the photograph is time, what he calls the “that-has-been” and its “pure representation” in photographic form – how a photo can palpably show you what was – bringing it back to life, while also showing you what is no more. The image produces death while trying to preserve life. I really like this idea for two reasons: first, in relation to resurrecting refuse and re-presenting it in photographic form; second, in terms of how all photographs work.

Barthes suggests this defeat of time is much more tactual in historical photographs; that “This punctum is more or less blurred beneath the abundance and disparity of contemporary photographs.” He wrote in the ’70s, and I wonder how this idea relates to our contemporary experience with images – not so much as individual objects but as a steady stream, largely undifferentiated from one another. It seems an important idea to rediscover. I also thought about this in relation to the supposed death of printed photographs; what does it mean that even the physical reproduction of the thing in the past is gone, that it increasingly never existed, but only passes on by screen? Barthes proposed that the photographic object could be destroyed, yellowed, dead, like anything else. Which is a nice metaphor.

The process began by materializing these ideas using a mix of contemporary and antiquated objects and images: decontextualized stock photos, digital and analog processes, resampling both objects and printed photographs in order to bring them forward and show they existed. At the same time, I wanted to remind the viewer that the originals are gone, and I was thinking about the effect these images might have on a shared visual consciousness.

I interact for hours and hours with found, saved, and collected images and objects in the studio. I hope that my work method might carve a space for dialogue on the ways that images work, on questioning aesthetic tropes, on spectatorship, on the reading of visuals. How many objects and images get discarded in the constant process of generating new ones? These concerns have come to the fore of my practice, after working for the New York Times and other editorial or commercial jobs, where I made the same type of pictures that I’m trying to mess with here.”

To see the full interview please visit Lavalette.

For more information about Sara Cwynar please contact the gallery.

Press: Denise Kupferschmidt featured on Artspace


Denise Kupferschmidt was recently featured on Artspace.

Because you might have heard of Denise Kupferschmidt as an up-and-coming painter, your first thought might be that her work was surely an incisive commentary on the digital age, or a hypertheoreticaly discourse on formalism. Instead, Kupferschmidt is a formidable new painter for entirely different reasons. At age 35, Kupferschmidt shows a passion and sense of freedom in her craft rarely seen in artists her age.

To see the full post please visit Artspace.

For more information about Denise Kupferschmidt please contact the gallery.

Press: Graham Collins on Dust Magazine


Graham Collins was recently profiled by Dust Magazine.

Graham Collins’ varied work blends painting, architecture and sculpture into a contradictory amalgam of ruin and stability. Canvases of spray painted monochrome hues are partially obscured behind a scrim of tinted glass and encased in frames made with salvaged wood. The tinted monochromes combine the artist’s appreciation of normative craft forms, specifically woodworking and DIY window tinting, with the canon of abstraction. Collins forces a harmony from the disparate cultural and aesthetic values associated with these different entities.

Taking a cue from Frank Stella’s dictum that “what you see is what you see”, the works function at first glance as minimalist forms, yet hold a bevy of specific information right on the surface. The weather-stained wood, the torn window tinting, the color, the shape of the stretcher, the heavy, sharp glass, a section of wall–all serve as a collection of marks that signify different histories. While pocked and torn in places, these planes still shimmer and act as a kind of mirror reflecting their surrounding environment. On closer inspection the viewer’s eyes focus back and forth on the surfaces of the glass, the canvas, the tinting – revealing what we ourselves look like when viewing an artwork.

Graham Collins was born in Washington, DC in 1980. He received his BFA from The Corcoran School of Art and an MFA from Bard College. Collins’ artwork routinely incorporates a wide range of disciplines, including painting, sculpture, ceramics, woodworking, and architectural intervention. Solo exhibitions have been with Halsey McKay Gallery (East Hampton), the journal and Soloway, (Brooklyn). His work has been featured in group shows at Rachel Uffner Gallery, Derek Eller Gallery (NY), The Corcoran Museum (Washington DC), and Tät (Berlin), among others. He currently lives and works in Brooklyn.

To see the full post please visit Dust Magazine.

For more information about Graham Collins please contact the gallery.

News: Chris Duncan Interview on LVL3


Chris Duncan was recently interviewed by LVL3.

Chris Duncan is an Oakland-based artist who employs repetition and accumulation as a basis for experiments in visual and sound based media. Often in flux between maximal and minimal, Duncan’s work is a constant balancing act of positive or negative, loud or quite, solitary or participatory and tends to lead towards questions regarding perception, experience and transcendence.

Outside of his studio practice he organizes events and runs a small artist book press and record label called LAND AND SEA with his wife. Duncan earned his BFA from the California College of Arts and Crafts and his Masters Degree in Art Practice from Stanford University.

To see the full interview please visit LVL3.

For more information about Chris Duncan please contact the gallery.

Press: Sara Cwynar Reviewed by Canadian Art


Gallery artist Sara Cwynar had her current show reviewed by Canadian Art.

“Conceptual kitsch” might be the only adequate term to describe the work of artist Sara Cwynar. Born in Vancouver and raised in Ottawa, she studied design at Toronto’s York University and English at Vancouver’s University of British Columbia before relocating to New York and working as a graphic designer for the New York Times Magazine. Cwynar left the magazine earlier this year to work full-time on her art, the product of which is currently on view in Toronto at Cooper Cole.

Cwynar’s newest body of photographic work, Flat Death (2013), consists of careful arrangements of objects and images that the artist has then rephotographed.

The west side of the gallery is anchored by three such large-scale studies of floral arrangements. An evolution of Cwynar’s earlier Color Studies series (2012), these Contemporary Floral Arrangement works are composed of groupings of objects organized by colour atop enlarged photographs depicting flower-arranging techniques.

The bouquets in these prints bloom with the debris of everyday life: spools of thread, golf tees, paper clips, fancy toothpicks and more. Up close, each arrangement of items resembles the cluttered pages of an I Spy book. However, with slightly more distance, it becomes apparent that each component has been carefully placed upon reproductions of petals, pistils and leaves, following the contours of the image below.

A self-professed “hoarder,” the artist maintains a comprehensive and growing archive of objects, photographs and other ephemera that she describes as a medium or tool in her work. Cwynar’s humour and obsessive collecting impulses, already evident in the floral pieces, are also apparent in another series of 13 photographs. These tightly wrap an interior corner, creating an intimate viewing space that echoes the cloistered self-referentiality of a collector’s stash.

Images culled from Cwynar’s archive are reimagined in abundant, often overwhelming, ways. For the print Continuous Pour (2013), Cwynar appropriated images from photography manuals and stock food photographs as well as from her own previous work Bernardo with Props (2013); she then arranged these into a dizzying meditation on the title action.

Many of the works in the show can be grouped in pairs or trios, provoking viewers to look closely for additional references. Both Toucan In Nature (Post It Notes) (2013) and Gold – NYT April 22, 1979 (Alphabet Stickers) (2013) employ a technique whereby Cwynar enlarges an original archival image, then reprints it on several pages and reassembles it with tape. This collage then becomes a ground for embellishment—in these cases, with Post-it note arrows and gold alphabet stickers, respectively—before being rephotographed. The resulting images are delightfully kitschy and visually pleasing, but also evince the very involved process of their making.

Without subtlety—but with craft and wit—Cwynar invites us to look closely and to question hierarchies of image-making, as well as the changing nature of photography. The title of this body of work references Barthes’s famed phrase on spatial collapse inherent to the medium, while five prints titled Darkroom Manual (2013)—scans of instructional-text images of darkroom equipment—underline oscillations between digital and analog. (The floral works were shot and developed on film before being digitally printed, further signalling a play between different techniques.)

Overall, the works on view invite speculation on the ever-increasing space and time that seemingly disposable stock photographs and ephemera, and the tropes they have propelled, might occupy.

To see the full review please visit Canadian Art online.

For more information about Sara Cwynar please contact the gallery.

Press: Sara Cwynar in Flare Magazine


Gallery artist Sara Cwynar is featured in the latest issue of FLARE Magazine.

Sara Cwynar is blessed with the gift of arrangement. The Vancouver-born, New York–based 27-year-old sped up the ladder in the graphic design world to get a job at the The New York Times Magazine (along with Bloomberg Businessweek, one of the most coveted spots for a designer) because of her talent at re-seeing and rearranging the familiar parts (headline, subhead, story, photo) into a fresh, make- you-double-take new whole. This past April, she quit to work on her art full-time—“I was installing shows on my vacation,” she says—and the fruits of her decision are on view at a Cooper Cole Gallery solo show in Toronto (Sept. 5–28).

As the title of one of her two books, Kitsch Encyclopedia, suggests, Cwynar is a collector of everyday objects. But, as with her graphic design magic, by reordering the obsolete and ordinary into colour coordinated groupings, she makes it extraordinary. Toy basketballs, thread spools and remote controls, in rich hues of lemon yellow, tropical green or poppy red, became colour-field mirages that make the viewer suspect the items have been spray-painted, or the photos retouched. Plastic figures frequently, like razors or bingo coins. “I’ve always been attracted to the myriad ways that colours are simulated,” she says. “Roland Barthes [describes] in a Mythologies essay how plastic never manages to simulate natural colour; it always fails, and has a distinct, particular plastic-y quality. I think it’s beautiful, this continued failure to accurately represent nature.”

Cwynar, who has also had images in the Museum of Modern Art and FOAM Photography Museum in Amsterdam, works away in her studio until the mess is prodigious—art supplies spill from under her bed into hallways and burst from cupboards and drawers. Pennies, plastic peaches, elastic bands and other ephemera are collected from her parents’ basement, eBay, flea markets and random neighbourhood junk shops: “The dollar stores here are just monumental.” At least 100 objects, from blue plastic forks to red candles, go into one colossal 3D bouquet she constructed and photographed for her new show. She also plays with reconfiguring pages from photo manuals from the ’50s to the ’90s, asking us to remember and value the discarded analogue process and, by extension, that old version of life itself, which, perhaps, like nature, we can’t capture, much as we try.

To see the full post please visit FLARE Magazine.

For more information about Sara Cwynar please contact the gallery.

Press: Sara Cwynar Featured on The New Yorker


Gallery artist Sara Cwynar was featured on The New Yorker.

“As part of our ongoing Emerging Photographers series, today we’re highlighting the work of Sara Cwynar, a Vancouver native who lives and works in Brooklyn. I have been following her work for a while, and was drawn in particular to the monochromatic “Color Studies” as well as the series “Accidental Archives”—both of which drew on a confluence of literature, kitsch, and photographic tropes, which she cites as inspirations. Most recently, Cwynar has been preparing for her solo show, opening this week, at the Cooper Cole Gallery in Toronto, where she will début a new collection of photographs called “Flat Death” (a reference to Roland Barthes). I caught up with Cwynar to find out more about the exhibition and her latest work.

You’ve described your work to me before as relating to “vernacular photography.” Does this apply to “Flat Death”?

Definitely! The process behind this work involves reprinting and scanning found images and reworking them in the studio, mixing them with new objects and materials—taking them out of the shared-image world and into a space for personal, often very obsessive intervention. Most of the reference images come from a huge personal archive I have of vernacular, pop-culture images.

I am interested in the steady stream of images that comes at us from different channels in everyday life, how these have helped to build and reinforce a shared view of the world. The pictures I have made are, in a sense, trompe-l’oeils. I am trying to foreground the experience in which the photo reveals itself to the viewer, where you unpack what the image is actually showing you. This happens with all the vernacular photos you see every day, but it happens too quickly to notice it. In this work, what might appear to be three-dimensional is flat, what might seem “beautiful” or “sophisticated” is made up of junk, and what might look old is new. The intention is to confuse the reading of the picture.

Is the history of studio photography something you consider?

Yes. I am interested in recreating certain familiar aspects of product shots and commercial still-lives. The reproduction of detail, for example, or a specific style of lighting. I take a lot of inspiration from old studio photos and how what is once fashionable or forward-looking can come to look absurd with changing styles.

Equally, I am interested in contemporary studio photography; the hyper-real, retouched images that we see everywhere. I want everything in my pictures to be intentionally unpolished, filled with mistakes, and tactile: the opposite of a clean, commercial image.

I like the idea of reinvesting the personal into a highly produced still-life image of the sort that would normally be used to sell something, and using objects that everyone has filling their junk drawers—lost or valueless objects—and presenting them as having artistic value.

Do you approach the categorization of objects in a pragmatic or theoretical sense? Or are the objects selected based purely on their aesthetic value?

Much of my work involves systems of categorization, particularly in relation to failed modernist ideas of obtaining and organizing the world, especially the idea that you could document everything through photography, which was a really prevalent idea at the medium’s beginning—that cameras would allow us to obtain the whole world in a sense, get the whole thing “objectively” on film. Organizing and manipulating my archive of saved materials in the studio is a way of controlling the world through images, organizing chaos, taking a small slice of the world and reworking it under my own terms.

Color plays a large role in your images. What informs the color choice?

I am really drawn to the way that colors morph—faded pinks on printed matter or colors in plastic (there is a great Roland Barthes essay about the way that plastic always fails to replicate natural color) and how scanning can warp colors and bring out new ones. I like colors that have been messed up by time and process.

Lastly, what are you particularly excited to share in the exhibition?

Maybe because it’s the last one I made, I’m really excited about the gold picture, “Gold—NYT April 22, 1979.” I love the way that fake gold photographs. Gold is a quality of surface that remains a recognizable color when it is captured in a photograph. In this image, I loved the number of different iterations of gold alphabet stickers that I was able to find, and how the photo has a false value to it because it is made up of cheap materials but reflects one of the few things in our world that retains its value. I printed it on metallic paper so it really glows, and the surface is very tricky to read.”

To see the full post please visit The New Yorker.

For more information about Sara Cwynar please contact the gallery.

Press: Jen Stark Reviewed on Akimbo

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Jen Stark’s current exhibition reviewed on art blog Akimbo.

“Jen Stark’s use of colour is anything but restrained. Her selection of works at Cooper Cole is all about pleasing the eye, dipping into Op Art territory and coming out in three dimensions. Her wall installations are all trippy, multicoloured swirls and drips; each in its own way also suggests movement. After the initial appeal of her vortex installations wears off, it’s a ceiling hung mobile of concentric rings that play with our expectations of volumes of space and an abstract sworl mounted slightly off the wall to allow a subtle glow of colour to emerge beneath that sustain my curiosity.”

To see the full post please visit Akimbo.

For more information about Jen Stark please contact the gallery.

Jen Stark’s current exhibition continues until August 24, 2013.

Press: Devin Troy Strother Interviewed in Magenta Magazine


Devin Troy Strother was recently interviewed in the current issue of Magenta Magazine.

“Born in California, and now based between Los Angeles and Brooklyn, 27-year-old Devin Troy Strother makes work that combines painting, drawing, collage and sculpture, and reflects his experience growing up in a middle-class suburb of Los Angeles where he was “sometimes the only black kid in [his] class”. He brings this unique perspective to work that depicts decidedly contemporary scenarios that often feature joyful-looking African-American figures made from cut paper. Although celebrating black culture is Strother’s primary concern, subtle intimations of fraught African-American histories give the work weight. In the past year, Strother has had solo shows at Monya Rowe in New York, Richard Heller Gallery in Santa Monica and Bendixen in Copenhagen. His work was included in a two-person show at Toronto’s Cooper Cole earlier this summer. Here, Magenta editor Bill Clarke talks to the artist about how his early life influences his art, owning the ‘signage’ of Black American culture, and how one ‘gets a pass’ to drop the n-bomb.”

To see the full interview please visit Magenta Magazine online.

For more information about Devin Troy Strother please contact the gallery.

Press: Jen Stark Reviewed By NOW Magazine

Jen Stark’s current exhibition was reviewed by Now Magazine.

“Los Angeles-based artist Jen Stark doesn’t hang her work in galleries; she creates inter-dimensional rifts in their walls. Occupying a wholly original territory between painting and sculpture, she literally builds her complex vortices into walls or pedestals, giving the impression that they’ve opened into rainbow hued wormholes.

Behind each of these manifestations is a daunting degree of meticulous craftsmanship, handicraft and math. Stark’s three-dimensional spirals and eye-brain workouts are derived from a mix of sacred geometry and fractals painstakingly reconstructed by hand using brightly coloured paper, foam board and glue.

It’s Stark’s patient commitment to detail that lends her works their hallucinatory vividness. The geometrically precise swirl of Vortextural is made all the more compelling by the ambiguous rainbow-hued shapes around its rim.

She skirts the chaotic edge of her mathematically precise constructions in ways that make them more playful. And she’s not afraid to revel in the pure joy of colour running wild, as in Drippy, where it appears that a prismatic glob of colours has started to literally run down the wall from the gallery ceiling.

Dimension makes its visual impact with more restraint and elegance. A series of concentric rings suspended by threads to form a receding tunnel floating in mid-air, it evokes the colour spectrum and its perceptual trickery. Circling around it, however, you’re surprised to discover that the far side has been rendered in black and white, a monochrome inversion of the same work.
Pulsating, mathematically complex geometries bursting with colour are things we associate with waving glow sticks at 4 am. Stark gives these old psychedelic tropes a conceptual retrofit, infusing them with a clean, playful, contemporary edge.”

To see the full review please visit NOW Magazine.

Jen stark’s current exhibition continues at the gallery until August 10, 2013.

For more information about Jen Stark please contact the gallery.

News: Ryan Wallace Featured on Hunted Projects


Gallery artist Ryan Wallace was recently interviewed by Hunted Projects.

“Through investigating Chardin’s theory of the omega point and Kurzweil’s notion of technological singularity, Ryan Wallace explores where Chardin’s supreme point of complexity, consciousness and evolution is relational to Kurzweil’s concept of super intelligence evolving through technological means. Perhaps this may be complicated for you if you haven’t read up on either Pierre Teilhard de Chardin or Raymond Kurzweil, though Wallace’s sophisticated process driven abstractions visually expand upon these concepts of evolution and technological acceleration through creating complex, heavily layered works that visually and metaphorically relate to the universal evolution of total consciousness.

Being fascinated with scientific existentialism, Wallace’s Terraform series explores Chardin’s Omega Point theory through creating heavily layered multi-media canvas works that visually evoke supermassive black holes. Made using oil, enamel, pigment, crystalina and cold wax, the Omega Point works are an indulgence into complexity and materiality, stimulating a sensory overload. Simultaneously, Wallace’s Consensus works are additionally a play on the senses through the creation of replica rock sculptures that are displayed within tinted vitrine cases that make it difficult for the viewer to decipher which rocks are the real, or the replicant. Whilst on the other hand, Wallace’s Tablet paintings mimic both the Omega Point works, and his earlier Glean series, by having the connected elements pushed to the surrounding edges of the canvas, as to allow the central void to be an area of flattened information.”

To see the full interview please visit Hunted Projects.

For more information about Ryan Wallace please contact the gallery.

Press: Georgia Dickie in FLARE Magainze


Gallery artist Georgia Dickie has a small feature in Flare Magazine.

Georgia Dickie, 23, creates art out of found objects—rather menacing found objects. A strip of metal perched on a hockey puck looks like a snake about to strike, while the rusty old propeller lurks under a stack of metal objects. “By arranging combinations of objects, I attempt to describe the present moment,” Dickie says. “I engage in a continuous process of moving things around, building things up and taking things down, dismantling, rearranging, walking away and then revisiting.”

To see the full article please visite Flare Magazine.

For more information about Georgia Dickie please contact the gallery.


Gallery artist Sara Cwynar was featured on Sleek Magazine’s website.

“Hoarding – as anybody who’s ever filed away old receipts or napkins with scribbles on will know, is an addictive tendency. Once you’ve started documenting, scrapbooking and filing away, who’s to say where you should stop? For Canadian artist Sara Cwynar, the desire to hoard, a compulsion with collection, lies at the root of her work as an artist. For the installation Everything in the Studio (Destroyed), showing as part of the Young Talent programme at Foam Gallery, Cwynar took all the objects out of her studio at one given point, documenting each one and reconstituting it so it would fit in one corner of the room. The resulting exhibition is a colourful candy-coloured collection of lost objects, where traditional vanitas imagery mixes with the sheen of shiny plastic, a rotting piece of fruit, a plastic skull. But the memories are also bittersweet, and make me think of Don Draper’s comment in Mad Men, when pitching a Kodak Carousel: “Nostalgia – it’s delicate, but potent. Teddy told me that in Greek nostalgia literally means “the pain from an old wound.” It’s a twinge in your heart far more powerful than memory alone. This device isn’t a spaceship, it’s a time machine. It goes backwards, and forwards… it takes us to a place where we ache to go again”.

Draper’s description of nostalgia fits well with Cwynar’s archiving tendencies. It charts a wish to go back in time, and find something that was lost. Cwynar builds her own personal record through objects gleaned from flea markets, images and photos picked out from encyclopaedias and objects snuck out from skips. Through the process of accumulation, she explores its function in constituting personal memories, and the way in which these images move around, circulating through different hands, in different ways. She explains her interest as a desire to explore “the ways in which we understand the world through images: how we view ourselves and our history through a shared image-based archive built from cultural fantasies and photographic tropes”. Is she a compulsive hoarder, then? “Collecting, taking and re-composing images in my art practice is both a means of satisfying a constant impulse I have to hoard and save things, and a means of breaking into the constant image landscape that surrounds me, grabbing a small piece of the world and reconstituting it under my own terms”. Once the first installation of Everything in the Studio (Destroyed) was completed, Cwynar forced herself to destroy it, and come to terms with her compulsive hoarding tendencies. That’s definitely one way to do it.

Internet culture, and the way in which you can comically juxtapose the ordinary with the extraordinary, is another influence at play in her work. The internet creates (or maybe recreates) a new image-world. Cwynar observes that, “consumer culture and the internet have helped to create an image-world that exists on top of the real world and has in many ways subsumed it – and the possibility of finding ways out of this system by appropriating and messing with many of its tropes, using vernacular, throwaway materials and outdated imagery, to question the consensus of what is worth taking a picture of, and the glossy surface of so much that we see”.

Andy Warhol’s dislike of nostalgia (he put everything in labelled boxes and stored it away in New Jersey, eventually chucking it all out) is a critical reference point in the exhibition. Yet while professing a discomfort with the concept, Cwynar’s work still carries a particularly nostalgic aura, seemingly harking back to 1970s photographic techniques. I asked if this was intentional, and Cwynar replied: “Yes, my photos and the colour values and modes of production are definitely consciously nostalgic. In my work I am working through my nostalgia both by constantly documenting everything with a camera and constantly collecting materials and objects – it satisfies a need to grab onto a bit of the world that will last, making an external record of experience. Warhol says he hates nostalgia but by acknowledging this he is saying that he actually is very nostalgic, he just can’t help it and wishes he wasn’t. This is how I feel too”. Nostalgia reminds us of the pain of past memories, encouraging us to hold on to the past. Thankfully, Cwynar’s also looking to the future.”

- Sophia Satchell-Baeza

To see the full post please visit Sleek Magazine.

For more information about Sara Cwynar please contact the gallery.


Gallery artist Sara Cwynar is featured in the current issue of Magenta Magazine.

“Brooklyn-based Canadian Sara Cwynar’s photographs are informed by her collecting habits and propelled by her love of documentation. For the “Colour Studies” series (2012), Cwynar has accumulated a mass of objects and honours her “hoarding” obsession through the photographs, which read like still life arrangements, or images from catalogues or advertising. Cwynar composes her photographs in pleasing displays that are very personal, yet easy to relate to. Her acute attention to detail holds power on a micro scale yet, when looking at these compositions, the viewer feels a specific pull. In these photographs, relationships between items are highlighted, but the work is most concerned with colour. Cwynar neatly displays her understanding of aesthetics, meticulously organizing the noise of our material world.

Cwynar is a graduate of York University, and has exhibited her photos and installations internationally at The Magenta Flash Forward Festival (Toronto and Boston) Foam Photography Museum (Amsterdam), Ed Varie and Printed Matter (New York), Paul Petro Special Projects (Toronto) and the Royal College of Art (London, U.K.). Her work has been featured in The New York Times Magazine, 01 Magazine, and Bad Day. She was listed as one of Print magazine’s “20 Under 30 New Visual Artists for 2011”. Cwynar is represented by COOPER COLE in Toronto.”

To see the full article please visit Magenta online.

For more information about Sara Cwynar please contact the gallery.


Juxtapoz Magazine recently featured Tessar Lo on their website.

“Toronto-based Tessar Lo has a unique expressionistic style reminiscent of Basquiat or Anthony Lister. His dreamy, motion-filled paintings represent fragments of some free-flowing consciousness. Lo’s works draw energy from the visual language of children’s drawings, mysticism, symbols and totems. We love being able to see the artist’s hand so vividly in the strokes and lines of these dynamic, deeply engaging works.”

To see the full post please visit Juxtapoz Magazine.


Gallery artist Sara Cwynar was featured on fashion magazine We Are Selecters.

“Canadian photographer, artist and graphic designer, Sara Cwynar (b. 1985) combines photographic images with installations, collages and sculptures. She has a constant need to collect photographs, objects and all kinds of ephemera, which she then re-arranges and documents. Sara currently lives and works in New York.

For the installation, ‘Everything in the Studio (Destroyed)’, which is being exhibited at Foam 3h as part of the young talent program me of Foam, Sara Cwynar took all of the materials in her studio at one time, documented each items and arranged it into a digital plan where she could fit the entire contents into a corner of the gallery.

Sara attempted to install the archive according to the plan, which quickly began to fall apart as images and objects were not how she had remembered them. She left the materials for a month, then destroyed the whole thing, … so that she would be forced to purge the archive – allowing herself to start anew, and documenting everything only with a camera.

All that remains of this studio’s worth of materials is the image. ‘Everything in the Studio (Destroyed)’ by Sara Cwynar can be seen until 16th of May 2013 at Foam. An exhibition made possible by Van Bijlevelt Stichting and the Gieskes-Strijbis Fund.”

To see the full post please visit We Are Selecters.

For more information about Sara Cwynar please contact the gallery.

Press: Jen Stark Interviewed on Live Fast

Gallery artist Jen Stark was recently featured on Live Fast Magazine.

“A rising star on the global contemporary arts scene, her unique technique and her mastery of color and geometry fascinate. No wonder her intricate sculptural work – so hypnotic and colorful – has caught the attention of critics and collectors alike. You have to see it to believe it.”

See the full post here.

For more information about available works from Stark please contact the gallery.

Press: Artinfo names Georgia Dickie top 30 under 30

Gallery artist Georgia Dickie was recently featured in Artinfo Canada’s top 30 under 30 list.

“Georgia Dickie, 23, is an artist. She received her BFA from OCAD and has exhibited at Nudashank Gallery in Baltimore, MD; Toronto’s MKG127, Erin Stump Projects; the Museum of Contemporary Canadian Art, and the Oakville Galleries. In February 2013, Dickie will be participating in the Soi Fischer Thematic Residency Program with the artist, Artie Vierkant. She is currently represented by Cooper Cole and will exhibit her first solo show with the gallery in April.”

To see the full list (which also features COOPER COLE Director Simon Cole) please visit Artinfo.

For more information about Georgia Dickie please contact the gallery.

Press: Ryan Wallace on NY Arts Magazine

Gallery artist Ryan Wallace was featured on New York Arts Magazine.

“Do you see yourself as a painter? Do you care? I’ve always thought you fetishized the your surface.

RW: At the core yes, though sculpture has become increasingly important. These works still come from my understanding of painting. They are essentially still lifes. For me, abstract paintings have inherent psychological connotations. The sculptures that I make are generally recognizable things. The manner in which the realist objects are created, allow them to emote a similar tone to the abstractions I make with paint or collage materials. What they do is more important to me than what they are. I find that surface helps to unify the work. They have a kind of touch or attention to materials that is of my sensibility, rather than it all being the same style or thing. ”

To see the full post please visit New York Arts Magazine.

For more information about Ryan Wallace please contact the gallery.

Press: De-Accessioned featured on Artforum

Our current exhibition De-Accessioned was listed on Artforum as a critics pick.

“This is a surprisingly ambitious group show that doesn’t deal with deaccessioning as a reality (à la Michael Asher) but instead mines that term for the institutional mystery and intrigue it suggests. Deaccessioning is the shadowy process whereby museums get rid of works in their collections. As such, many of the works in this show are packed for transport—either rolled up, crated, stacked, or leaning against the walls. While some pieces overlap (notably Laura McCoy’s thickly worked foamcore boards resting within Georgia Dickie’s tape outlines), even those that are relatively clearly displayed are still essentially submerged into artist-cum-“curator” Lucas Soi’s overarching image of the show.

Operating like Louise Lawler in reverse, Soi arranged this show like a studio photographer composing an allegorical image of one of a museum’s darkest secrets. He even added crates when most of the work probably arrived at the gallery in the back of a cab. This sculptural intervention makes clear the disingenuous nature of Soi’s claim to “curate.” His decision to deploy Matthew Brown’s paintings rolled up and arranged on the floor as a grille or grating speaks to this as well, revealing him, in this exhibition at least, to be a sculptor more at ease working materially with the work of others.

The reversals—between paintings becoming sculptures and those sculptures themselves existing somehow “photographically,” almost posed as in a portrait studio—produces a fascinating aura of fake candor that through clear insincerity manages to release a weirdly affecting emotive yelp. Ultimately, it is this collision of confidence with insecurity, bubbling up from many of the tentative paintings themselves, which gives the show its own life.”

To see the review on line please visit Artforum.

De-Accessioned continues until January 19, 2013.

Join us for a talk with curator Lucas Soi this Saturday January 12, 2013 / 3:00pm – 4:00pm.

Press: Maya Hayuk featured in Brooklyn Magazine

Gallery artist Maya Hayuk was recently featured in Brooklyn Magazine. 

See the article here to get a look inside Maya’s studio.

“What are the three inanimate things you’d save first in a fire?
All of my external hard drives, my archive of photographs, the pillow my grandmother embroidered in 1923, when she was 13 years old.”

Press: Jen Stark featured on It’s Nice That

Gallery artist Jen Stark was recently featured on It’s Nice That.

“The Miami-born master of colour and form embraces complexity but in a fully inclusive way, creating pieces that are both immediately satisfying and infinitely intriguing.”

To see the full post please visit It’s Nice That.


Press: Sara Cwynar feature in Macleans

Gallery artist Sara Cwynar received a nice mention in a recent Macleans article profiling Canadians at the art fairs in Miami.

“Cooper Cole gallery has enjoyed a meteoric rise to the top of Toronto’s West-end gallery scene, thanks in large part to star pupil Sara Cwynar, who along with a mini army of CC’s best and brightest, will be featured at Miami Project, the freshman of this year’s slew of satellite fairs. Born in Vancouver but based in Brooklyn, Cwyer, a graphic designer and illustrator who moonlights as both at New York Times magazine, has the impressive resume, the of-the-moment aesthetic, and just-the-right dose of attention from just-the-right tastemakers to make us all think one thing: girl’s about to blow.”

To see the full article please visit Macleans online.

Press: Geoff McFetridge Interviewed by Artinfo

Artinfo recently ran a feature on Geoff McFetridge interviewing him about his current show at the gallery.

“When graphic designer and skate-culture icon, Geoff McFetridge, was advertised to be exhibiting new work at Toronto’s Cooper Cole – what is increasingly becoming the city’s platform for young, international, and typically pop-minded talent — one could hear the country’s subterranean street culture step a little closer to the surface. Former art director of the Beastie Boys’ underground “Grand Royal” magazine, and typography designer for Sofia Coppola’s “Virgin Suicides” and Spike Jonze’s “Where The Wild Things Are,” the Calgary-born, LA-based McFetridge has earned his credit on a stratified cultural playing field [such that even his more corporate clients, like Pepsi, Nike, and Gap, seem better for his touch (not McFetridge worse for theirs)].

Amid these various design-centered, multidisciplinary initiatives, McFetridge has long maintained a presence in the art world, presenting solo exhibitions in Los Angeles, Berlin, Paris, London, New York, and Japan. Uniquely, “Floating,” McFetridge’s exhibition at Cooper Cole (on until December 8) marks the artist’s first show in Canada.”
-Sky Goodden

To see the full post please visit Artinfo.

Geoff McFetridge
November 9 – December 8, 2012

For sales and press inquires please contact the gallery.

Press: Geoff McFetridge featured on The Grid

Our current show with Geoff McFetridge was featured in this weeks issue of The Grid.

Pick up a copy of The Grid or see the article online here.

“In “Passing,” for example, one of the paintings in McFetridge’s current show, two cyclists ride by each other in opposite directions, yet the tension between them is palpable. McFetridge captures the exact moment they meet, a moment full of potential that we sense will go unfulfilled. The cyclists could turn to look at each other, they could dismount and chat, they could fall in love. But they won’t—they’re just passing. “You grow accustomed to working with the language of your culture and then you realize it’s actually universal,” he says.”

Geoff McFetridge
November 9 – December 8, 2012

For sales and press inquires please contact the gallery.

Press: Geoff McFetridge Interviewed by SLAMXHYPE

Our current show with Geoff McFetridge was featured on SLAMXHYPE.

McFetridge was interviewed and profiled in his Los Angeles studio space for the article.

“I draw many many pieces when before I do a show, developing imagery. Images really carry my paintings as technically they are extremely simple and flat. For me it is the image that is central to every painting. The images come out of things I see, or imagine I saw, or ideas that I continue to explore and repeat. Much of the work involves figures, rendered in their most simplistic form. Once I have an image that resonates with me, I really refine it, reducing it to the point to where it is almost falling apart visually. I am interested in visual cliches. For years my graphics came out of finding, and inventing and tweaking common language and graphics. The work was not referential though. I was not appropriating images. I have tried to make original work that somehow felt familiar, so familiar that it feels appropriated.”

See the full post on SLAMXHYPE.

Geoff McFetridge
November 9 – December 8, 2012

For sales and press inquires please contact the gallery.


Press: Art Forum Critic’s Pick Chicago Imagists Group Show

Gallery artists Anders Oinonen and Marc Bell are both included in the current exhibition at the DePaul Art Museum in Chicago. This exhibition explores work by contemporary artists who draw inspiration from an earlier generation of artists known as the Chicago Imagists.

The show was chosen by Artforum as a Critics’ Pick.

“…reminds viewers of the original movement’s loosely associated idiosyncrasies: figural forms, often with a combination of hieratic graphic precision and grotesque distortion, comic juxtaposition and cryptic text, recurrence of motifs and the suggestion of hidden or symbolic meaning, and strong colors not of the Pop art Day-Glo variety but out of comic books, Surrealist painting, and homespun craft.”

To see the full article, visit ArtForum.

DePaul Art Museum
September 14 – November 18, 2012

Press: Geoff McFetridge Featured on Complex

Our current show with Geoff McFetridge was previewed on Complex.

“At Toronto’s Cooper Cole Gallery, McFetridge’s signature style and humor sings through neat compositions with even neater titles. The show is titled Floating.”

See the full post on Complex.

Geoff McFetridge
November 9 – December 8, 2012

For sales and press inquires please contact the gallery.

Press: Maya Hayuk featured on Design Milk

Our recent show with Maya Hayuk was featured on Design Milk.

“This wall covered in layered canvases becomes a three-dimensional installation of criss-crossing, brightly colored lines full of eye-catching depth.”

To see the full post please visit Design Milk online.

For sales inquires please contact the gallery.

Press: Geoff McFetridge Previewed on 12ozProphet

Our upcoming show with Geoff McFetridge was previewed on 12ozProphet.

“Los Angeles-based, Calgary-born artist Geoff McFetridge is set to open Floating at Cooper Cole Gallery in Toronto on November 9, 2012. This will mark McFetridge’s first show in his native land of Canada.”

See the full post on 12ozProphet.

Geoff McFetridge
November 9 – December 8, 2012

For sales and press inquires please contact the gallery.

Press: Geoff McFetridge Previewed on Trendland

Our upcoming show with Geoff McFetridge was previewed on Trendland.

“You should already know artist Geoff McFetridge for his work with The New York Times, Colette or Nike. His very graphic signature style of pastel colors and simple shapes made him famous in the graphic design and art world. McFetridge has an upcoming new solo exhibition at Cooper Cole in Toronto, so if you are around, you should definitely check it out!”

To see the full post visit Trendland.

Geoff McFetridge
November 9 – December 8, 2012

For sales and press inquires please contact the gallery.

Press: Geoff McFetridge previewed on Juxtapoz






Our upcoming show with Geoff McFetridge was previewed on Juxtapoz Magazine.

“An artist we cover on the site often, and one who has become a painter with an increasingly signature style and approach to the age old idiom, ‘less is more,’ Los Angeles based, Calgary-born Geoff McFetridge is set to open Floating at Cooper Cole Gallery in Toronto on November 9, 2012.”

See the full post on Juxtapoz.

Geoff McFetridge
November 9 – December 8, 2012

For sales and press inquires please contact the gallery.

Press: Geoff McFetridge previewed on Lodown Magazine

Our upcoming show with Geoff McFetridge was previewed on Lodown Magazine.

Geoff McFetridge
November 9 – December 8, 2012

To see the full post visit Lodown Magazine.

For sales and press inquires please contact the gallery.

Press: Permanent Demand Featured in NOW Toronto

Our current exhibition Permanent Demand featuring Andrew Jeffrey Wright, William Buzzell, and Jesse Harris was mention in NOW Toronto Magazine.

“Art as product and commodity is the target of Permanent Demand, a group show of three artists. Together their pieces form a satiric trifecta that skewers art as both rarified object and capitalist fetish.”

“Andrew Jeffrey Wright addresses the theme with a series of drawings tracing the manufacture of “products” like a Nike sneaker, a painting and a baby. Paintings are made from a palette that includes noxious bodily fluids like “snot” and “pus,” and Nike sneakers apparently can’t be made without the blood of children. However bleak their underlying point, these lo-fi drawings still radiate a gleeful punk rock nihilism that brings to mind 90s kitchen-sink zines. ”

To see the full post please visit NOW Toronto.

Permanent Demand featuring Andrew Jeffrey Wright, William Buzzell, and Jesse Harris continues until November 3, 2012.

For sales and press inquires please contact the gallery.

Press: Permanent Demand Featured on Frameweb

Our current exhibition Permanent Demand featuring Andrew Jeffrey Wright, William Buzzell, and Jesse Harris got a mention on Netherlands based design blog Frameweb.

“Running until 3 November at Cooper Cole Gallery in Toronto, Permanent Demand explores the ideas of art as a commodity and the consequences of consumer culture through the eyes of three very different artists: Andrew Jeffrey Wright, William Buzzell and Jesse Harris.

Andrew Jeffrey Wright approaches the subject through both humorous and somewhat satirical line drawings or through colour permeated canvases; William Buzzell uses three dimensional collages to talk about consumerism, while Jesse Harris work is statement oriented, using readily available materials and familiar forms and language.

The work of the these three artists comes together in an eclectic dialogue that share the same preoccupations and influences of a generation.”

To see the full post please visit Frameweb.

Permanent Demand featuring Andrew Jeffrey Wright, William Buzzell, and Jesse Harris continues until November 3, 2012.

For sales and press inquires please contact the gallery.

Press: Jesse Harris featured on Juxtapoz

Jesse Harris’ recent mural project was featured on Juxtapoz Magazine.

“Toronto-based multi-disciplinary artist, Jesse Harris, who was recently included in a group show entitled “Permanent Demand” at Cooper Cole gallery, has completed a new mural in the West Queen Street Neighborhood of Toronto. “You’ve Changed” is meant to comment on local gentrification of West Queen Street and to support a positive message to patients visiting the adjacent Centre from Addiction and Mental Health.”

To see the full post please visit Juxtapoz online.

Press: Permanent Demand featured on Beautiful Decay

Our current exhibition Permanent Demand featuring Andrew Jeffrey Wright, William Buzzell, and Jesse Harris got a mention on art blog Beautiful Decay.

“If you’re in Toronto, or going to be before november 3, you should check out Permanent Demand at Cooper Cole Gallery right now. CC put together some smart, funny, and energetic pieces loosely about art and consumerism by Jesse Harris, William Buzzell, and Andrew Jeffrey Wright to make what looks to be a great show.”

To see the full post please visit Beautiful Decay.

Permanent Demand featuring Andrew Jeffrey Wright, William Buzzell, and Jesse Harris continues until November 3, 2012.

For sales and press inquires please contact the gallery.

Press: William Buzzell featured on The World’s Best Ever

William Buzzell was recently profiled on NYC based lifestyle blog, The World’s Best Ever.  

William explains the subject behind a selection of works from our current show Permanent Demand.

To see the full post please visit The World’s Best Ever.

For press and sales inquires please contact the gallery.

Press: Maya Hayuk on Two Coats of Paint

Maya Hayuk’s current exhibition was featured on NYC blog Two Coats of Paint.

“Over the past decade or so, a slew of galleries have popped up in the west end of Toronto, giving the city’s art scene a much appreciated injection of vitality. The burgeoning contemporary art hub along the Ossington strip and west Queen West has garnered international attention and acclaim, and deservedly so. Here’s a quick round up of notable painting shows in Toronto this month.

With influences ranging from Ukranian Easter eggs to chandeliers to holograms, Maya Hayuk’s Multi Versus could be described as psychedelia for the 21st century. Organized chaos reigns on canvases splashed with vibrant rainbow hues, intermixed with freehand geometric line work. A member of artist collective Barnstormers (other members include Chuck Webster, Doze Green, and Ryan McGinness) and frequent collaborator with a variety of musicians including M.I.A., The Beastie Boys, and Animal Collective, Brooklyn-based Hayuk’s oeuvre also includes silk-screening, set design, video work, and internationally commissioned murals.”

To see the full post please visit Two Coats of Paint.

Maya Hayuk’s exhibition Multi Versus continues at the gallery until October 6, 2012.

To view photos of the installation please click this link.

For press and sales information please inquire with the gallery.

Press: Ryan Travis Christian featured on New City Art

Ryan Travis Christian was recently listed as one of the top 50 artists working in Chicago by New Art City.

Ryan Travis Christian has one of the most strikingly recognizable styles in Chicago right now. His monochrome graphite drawings pull cartoony caricatures into chiaroscuro smokescreens—hallucinogenic residue or a terrorist’s daydream? The compositions are complicated, the figures unnerving. His 2011 exhibition, “The River Rats,” at Western Exhibitions, set the stage for his meandering, twisted path to portraiture; a crisp Surrealist interpretation of the after-dark alley cat junk aesthetic so readily plucked from 1920s Disney animations, yet recall the human comedy and tragedy of James Ensor’s masks. Christian is also an energetic promoter of peers on the web, resulting in invitations to collaborate on drawings exhibited around the country.

To see the full list please visit New Art City.

For more information about available works from Ryan Travis Christian please contact the gallery.

Press: Sara Cwynar featured on Paper Mag

Gallery artist Sara Cwynar received a nice mention on Paper Mag.

“Brooklyn based artist Sara Cwynar is a graphic designer and illustrator for The New York Times Magazine as well as an avid collector of all sorts of shit. Her most recent solo show, “Accidental Archives” was a selection of wild, color-coded mini dioramas of her possessions that were photographed and displayed at the Cooper Cole Gallery in Toronto. All of Cwynar’s work is worth exploring but her projects “Kitsch Encyclopedia” and “Paranoia Archive” are two of my favorites that you can view along with much much more on her website. ”

To see the full post please visit Paper Mag online.

For more information about Sara Cwynar please contact the gallery.

Press: Ryan Wallace featured on Sight Unseen

Gallery artist Ryan Wallace was recently featured on Sight Unseen.

“To get an idea of how Ryan Wallace approaches materials, look no further than one of the walls of his studio, made from the kind of slatboard paneling that a Chinatown souvenir shop might use to stack metal shelves full of I ♥ New York T-shirts. When Wallace found the studio last year, it was perfect otherwise — a clean, well-lit space above Paulie Gee’s pizza in Greenpoint, Brooklyn, right near his apartment. “At first I thought the wall was kind of gross,” he says. But he slowly began to accept it on a purely functional level; the way things could be hung at different heights was ideal for a painter. “I thought, ‘What can I do with this?’ A thing like that gets planted in my head, and eventually it finds its way into the next thing I’m doing.”

If this open-minded approach to materials is the foundation of Wallace’s work, an interest in existential scientific questions is its overriding concept. Growing up on the East Coast, Wallace was never particularly spiritual or religious, but he always found himself reading special editions of Time about the latest theories of the universe. His formal education at RISD only proved to him that artists and scientists are more alike than not. “We’re both on some sort of quest for discovery,” he says. He’s been fascinated in recent years by the Large Hadron Collider at CERN, which served as an inspiration point for his one-man show at Morgan Lehman Gallery earlier this year. For “Cusp,” he created three new series of abstract paintings — Glean, Atlas, and Tablet — which, as their names suggest, meditate on information overload, geography, and data in different visual ways. From a purely material perspective, they use soft solids like oil, enamel, ink, graphite, PVA, Mylar, artist tape, and cut paper, stretched and bound and sorted and scored into a four-cornered ordered object. As physical objects, however, they are layered and compressed with so much visual data that they become, as Wallace puts it, “a surface that stores information.”

To create the pieces in his new series, Wallace began cutting into the paintings and building them from the inside out. The collage-based paintings consist of a fastidious arrangement of hundreds of tiny pieces of paper and tape leftover from other projects. A sheet of Mylar is glued over the whole thing, leaving random-looking air bubbles in pockets over the piece. “The Mylar gives this kind of neurotic process an element of total chance,” he says. “If it was just little things arranged on a surface, it would be too design-y for me.” But it’s also consistent with his process. “I never use anything the right way,” he says. “You’re definitely not supposed to wrap a canvas in Mylar.”

Using materials the wrong way, however, seems to bring serendipitous results. A series of freestanding vitrines for his show at Morgan Lehmann used automotive tints and one-way mirror film to raise some plaster casts he’d made of ordinary rocks to the status of sacred object. “My work’s not sarcastic in this way, but I’m using stuff that 16-year-olds put on their Civics to be macho and fancy,” Wallace says. “And at the end of the day, I also think they’re really beautiful. Whenever I go from painting to printmaking to sculpture, it’s always about what can this medium do that that medium can’t do.”

For Wallace, a little discovery — like how his Mylar paintings ended up having a waxy surface texture — can result in an entire body of work. He even found a couple of 4x8s of his studio’s god-awful paneling in the stairwell of the building earlier this year, and he’s now begun using it to make pedestals. He even may be beginning to like it. “It’s scrappy, it’s industrial,” he says, listing off a few adjectives he considers compliments. “And it’s got this design element to it, but it’s a crummy one. That balance of elegance and crum is really important to me.”

To see the full post and accompanying photo essay please visit Sight Unseen.

For more information about Ryan Wallace please contact the gallery.

Press: Sara Cwynar featured on 1883 Magazine

Sara Cwynar’s exhibition Accidental Archives was featured on London, UK based 1883 Magazine’s blog.

“Canadian photographer Sara Cwynar uses what could otherwise be seen as junk to create a beautiful colour spectacle. In Accidental Archives, Cwynar has collected objects over the last decade and meticulously arranged them into colour order to create a vibrantly retro collection giving your average household goods a new lease of life.

“It’s about working through all the junk and souvenirs and photos we accumulate,” says Cwynar. “And also the collective body of photographs we see and understand in our culture.”

You can see Accidental Archives at the Cooper Cole Gallery in Toronto until Saturday.”

To see the full post please visit 1883 Magazine’s blog.

Press: Sara Cwynar Featured on American Photography Magazine

Sara Cwynar’s exhibition Accidental Archives was featured on American Photography Magazine’s blog.

“If you’re a collector of some sort, chances are you’ll appreciate Sara Cwynar’s project “Accidental Archives.” Using objects that she accumulated over the course of a decade, Cwynar has sorted them out by color, and photographed them on a background of the same shade. The result is a series of somewhat eerie still lifes, in which all sorts of things compete for attention with each other. My favorite might be the green one, in which the jaw of some scaly creature finds itself next to a can of soda, and a few plants. It’s actually not the first time that we’ve seen a photography project which groups together objects of similar colors; back in April, we wrote about JeongMee Yoon’s “The Pink & Blue Project,” which looks at the way that color has come to be associated with gender. Cwynar’s project is a little more personal in nature than Yoon’s, but it also shows the way we hoard objects today.

This work is on display at Toronto’s Cooper Cole Gallery until August 18.”

To see the full post please visit  the American Photography Magazine blog.

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Press: Sara Cwynar featured on Fubiz

Sara Cwynar’s current exhibition was featured on Parisian design blog Fubiz.

“La photographe canadienne Sara Cwynar nous propose de découvrir ces clichés et cette série « Study of Color » réunissant des objets qu’elle a pu collecter pendant une décennie, le tout rangés par couleur. Un aspect visuel très réussi à découvrir à la Cooper Cole Gallery à Toronto, et également dans la suite de l’article.”

To see the full post please visit Fubiz.

Cwynar’s exhibition Accidental Archives continues at the gallery until August 18, 2012.

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Press: Summer exhibitions reviewed on Akimbo

Both of the summer exhibitions at the gallery received a mention on Canadian art blog Akimbo.

Writer Terence Dick has this to say about our summer group show Zagga Zow:

“Cooper Cole has an especially eye-popping display of energized work under the exclamatory rubric Zagga Zow. A lot of the work focuses on figures and faces; combine that with the electric colour palette and a psychedelic sense of humour, and you get a show that leans heavily in the direction of underground comics (yet another cross-over!). Participating artist Marc Bell is well known for his trippy panels of dense image and wordplay, while Taylor McKimens has a definite Gary Panter-thing going on. I’m not sure what to make of the mock-tribal art of Charlie Roberts and the racist-caricatures of Devin Troy Strother. Summer fun breaks down for me at this level of political incorrectness, unless I’m missing the underlying critique.”

He also comments on Sara Cwynar’s exhibition Accidental Archives:

“In the back, and not officially Zagga Zow, Sara Cwyner has the kind of maximalist, floor-to-ceiling assemblage that turns my crank. The overall feel is actually one of mourning as this (like Pascal Grandmaison’s similarly elegiac installation at Prefix ICA) is a shrine to the soon-to-be-lost era of darkroom photography. It’s funny/sad how quickly the once-familiar negatives strips and photomat bags have disappeared from our visual culture. It reminds me of how I had to explain what a film cartridge was to a class reading Walter Benjamin’s The Work of Art in the Age of Mechanical Reproduction. Times change, but photography, not simply in content but in form, is memory.”

To see the full post please visit Akimbo.

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Press: Sara Cwynar featured on Fast Company Design

Sara Cwynar’s current show was featured on Fast Company’s Design blog.

“Cwynar’s latest series, Accidental Archives, pushes her archival instinct to an almost obsessive place. Each photograph shows a carefully arranged selection of her belongings, organized by color. “The concept began as a means of working my way through this massive collection of images and objects that I am always gathering and saving,” she explains to Co.Design. “Then I arranged the collections into still lifes, starting with the color but moving on from there to contain narratives and ideas.”

In yellow, lemons and Kodak photography supplies mingle. Pink, of course, is the most gendered photograph–hair curlers, cleaning gloves, and flowers–and an ominous cellophane carton of uncooked meat. Photos are much in evidence, too. “The photos deal with the tropes of photography,” Cwynar says. “I collect examples of traditional forms of photography: the studio still life is most prominent here, then the class portrait, the news photo, the product shot, the leftover photo of your ex-boyfriend, the souvenir postcard, and many others.”

“It’s about working through all the junk and souvenirs and photos we accumulate,” adds Cwynar. “And also the collective body of photographs we see and understand in our culture.” Accidental Archives is on view now at Cooper Cole Gallery in Toronto.”

To view the full post please visit Fast Company’s Design blog.

For press and sales inquires please contact the gallery.

Press: Sara Cwynar featured on Designboom

Sara Cwynar’s current exhibition Accidental Archives was highlighted on Designboom.

“canadian photographer sara cwynar has produced a body of works consisting of personal artifacts that have been collected for over a decade, entitled ‘accidental archives’. the installation assembles a miscellany of objects and possessions arranged to represent an insight into the artist’s life and creative process. cwynar extends the concept by organizing her belongings into smaller color coded formats, creating mini dioramas that inform the photo editions.

these visual cross-sections are a contemporary take on classic still life photography, where what starts as a study of color, evolve into a variety of narratives that speak on ideas such as gender roles, consumerism, and mass consumption. the work is on show at the cooper cole gallery in toronto, canada through till the 18th of august, 2012.”

See the full post on Designboom.

Sara Cwynar’s exhibition Accidental Archives continues until August 18th.

Press: Sara Cwynar mentioned on the New York Times

Gallery artist Sara Cwynar received a review of her current exhibition Accidental Archives on the New York Times blog.

“Sara Cwynar, an artist and a designer at the Times Magazine, takes collecting to the extreme. She told me that she constantly amasses objects, both to satisfy her “hoarding impulses” and to compile a historical record. This winter, while contemplating a move from her Bushwick apartment and studio, Cwynar began to feel that her personal archive was becoming an unhealthy burden. When approached in January to do her first solo exhibition, she had an idea that would make use of her entire collection and ultimately force her to get rid of it all.”

To read the full review please visit the New York Times.

For press and sales inquires please contact the gallery.

Press: Juxtapoz Magazine covers Zagga Zow

Juxtapoz Magazine featured our current exhibition Zagga Zow on their blog.

“Cooper Cole in Toronto is hosting a great line-up in the group exhibition, Zagga Zow, now on display through August 20, 2012. Cooper Cole went into the deep trenches of the urban dictionary to find out what Zagga Zow means, and they came up with “A word with literally no definition.” In the meantime, Matt Leines, Larissa Bates, Devin Troy Strother, Marc Bell, Charlie Roberts, John Riepenhoff, James Kirkpatrick, Anders Oinonen, and Sara Clendering are all showcased.”

To see the full post please visit Juxtapoz online.

For sales inquires please contact the gallery.

Press: Lauren Luloff Mentioned in the New York Times

Lauren Luloff recently received a New York Times mention in a review written by Roberta Smith.

“Lauren Luloff’s “Flame Violent and Golden,” which seems pieced together from textile remnants that are actually hand-painted on different scraps of cloth, using bleach. It has some of the scenery-chewing exuberance of Julian Schnabel, which is quite refreshing.”

Read the full article online on the New York Times.

For more information about Lauren Luloff please contact the gallery.

Press: Sara Cwynar Featured on It’s Nice That

Sara Cwynar was recently featured on London, UK based design blog It’s Nice That.

“One of Print Magazine’s 20 Under 30 New Visual Artists in 2011, designer Sara Cwynar is proving herself to be mighty popular in the design and visual arts world. A young and self proclaimed graphic designer and artist, Sara’s work is the toast of many a trendy blog with her vivid colours, readily-viewable mood boards and open passion for all things magic. The combination of the dreamy things that inspire her, combined with her very impressive and professional knowledge of layout – see The New York Times Magazine, where she works – makes her a curious rarity, and definitely one to watch.”

Read the full article at the following link.

Cwynar will be presenting a new body of work this summer at the gallery in a solo exhibition titled Accidental Archives.

For more information please contact the gallery.

Press: Ryan Travis Christian & Marissa Textor on Artlog

Ryan Travis Christian and Marissa Textor’s current exhibition It Ain’t Conceptual featured on Artlog.

“Marissa Textor and Ryan Travis Christian are not only long-time friends, but also share a serious love for graphite. Hailing from Los Angeles and Chicago, respectively, the pals recently flung open the doors of Toronto’s Cooper Cole gallery to present It Ain’t Conceptual, a selection of their latest work.

Textor’s painstakingly photorealistic graphite drawings depict forces of nature at their most ruthless and unsympathetic. Her exquisite, clinically objective renderings could almost pass for monochrome photographs. She’s not interested in drawing from her imagination—real life, she says, is much more interesting. In turn, photography has always gone hand-in-hand with her sketches. The images of explosions, oddly shaped foliage, rocks, animals, and water could have been taken yesterday or fifty years ago, imbuing them with a sense of timelessness and familiarity. A few slightly more abstract works adjust, layer, and distort images, marking a departure from the rest of her oeuvre.

Christian’s work mixes ’30s cartoons with ’80s design, evoking reactions ranging from humor to disgust. Vulgar at times, poignant at others, the 29-year-old’s psychedelic sketches are full of energy, explosions, jazz hands, manic patterns, and bulging eyes, focusing on conjuring a fractured, multidimensional depiction of time and space. His works on view have hints of a vintage Disney dream world, though Christian uses characters all his own to speak to the cultural politics of that era. When he’s not drawing, Christian curates exhibitions, DJs for Chicago’s Club Nutz, stages comedy and noise shows, and writes about fellow artists.”
- Tiffany Jow

To see the full post please visit Artlog.

Ryan Travis Christian & Marissa Textor’s exhibition It Ain’t Conceptual continues until May 20, 2012.

For press and sales inquires please contact the gallery.

Press: Ryan Travis Christian & Marissa Textor on Juxtapoz

Ryan Travis Christian and Marissa Textor’s upcoming exhibition It Ain’t Conceptual was previewed on Juxtapoz Magazine.

“Tonight, April 27, in Toronto, Cooper Cole Gallery is hosting It Ain’t Conceptual, featuring new works from Ryan Travis Christian and Marissa Textor, two up-and-coming artists that we have had on our radar for quite some time, and we quite excited to see showing together. With Christian’s vintage cartoon aesthetic, and Textor’s photoreal graphite drawings, this will be a really strong show.”

To see the full preview please visit Juxtapoz Magazine.

Press: Marissa Textor on New American Paintings

New American Paintings posted an interview with Marissa Textor previewing images from her upcoming two person exhibition with Ryan Travis Christian at COOPER COLE.

“Marissa Textor’s graphite drawings are hyperrealistic and vivid. With her pencil, Textor bends and molds shades of grey and white seamlessly, creating images so true to life that they appear to be photographic.

Her subjects vary, but she often creates images of pre- and post-destruction, conjuring an extreme sense of foreboding or impending devastation. Somehow this momentum she captures lingers with you as a viewer.”

To read the full interview please visit New American Paintings.

Ryan Travis Christian & Marissa Textor
It Ain’t Conceptual
April 27 – May 20, 2012

Opening reception: Friday April 27 / 6-10pm

For press and sales inquires please contact the gallery.

Press: Tessar Lo & Mark DeLong Reviewed By Canadian Art

Tessar Sebastian Lo and Mark DeLong’s current exhibitions at the gallery received a review from Canadian Art.

“Currently on view at Cooper Cole Gallery in Toronto is an exhibition that juxtaposes bodies of work by two Canadian artists of distinctly different practices—one more emotional and illustrative, the other more conceptual and abstract. Interestingly, both artists’ visual gestures still fit with gallery owner Simon Cole’s long-time interest in street-based art practices such as graffiti, stencil and paste-up.

The larger portion of Cooper Cole’s floor space (which is fairly large for a Dundas West location) is dedicated to “Past, Present, Past-Present,” an exhibition of new paintings by Toronto-based artist Tessar Sebastian Lo, while the smaller rear gallery hosts “No Cover,” a small collection of works by Vancouver-based artist Mark DeLong.

DeLong’s work is described on the gallery website as a blending of the abstract and the representational, though its representational qualities perhaps owe more to the quirky titles of the paintings than to what can be deciphered from the canvases themselves.

Bagels for Lunch, for example, is a recent work by the self-taught DeLong that forces me to look for these aforementioned bagels; though I do eventually allow myself to settle on a shape that could be a man eating a bagel, I wonder if DeLong is manipulating me, using the dichotomy of image and language as a tool of suggestion, the way a psychiatrist would ask someone what they see in an inkblot.

DeLong’s 2012 work Grapes boasts an equally absurd relationship with its title. While I feel certain that there are no grapes to be found in this image, I’m amused by the dry humour and confidently lazy brushstrokes that distinguish DeLong’s work; while most likely unintentional, I can’t help recalling the accusatory painting in Ad Reinhardt’s famous “What do you represent?” comic. The rich colours and suggested narratives induce a perplexing interrogation of the work, a mode that is certainly more in line with contemporary practices than the effects found in the adjoining exhibition.

I found Cole’s inclusion of Lo’s more expressive work to be somewhat cheeky given DeLong’s drier approach. Though Lo’s and DeLong’s works both speak to a mix of abstraction and representation, the similarities end there. There is no time for self-referentiality or apathy in Lo’s paintings; instead, they are urgent with understated angst.

Lo’s work, for me, cannot escape the distinct feel of outsider art—although the artist is an graduate of the illustration program at Sheridan College and has been exhibited nationally and internationally—and similarly, its ties to symbolist archetypes.

Still Life, Before, (no suggestive titles here) is a large painting that feels cumulative of all of Lo’s preferred symbols (or, as he refers to them, totems). The surface is an unusual blend of pastels and surly darknesses, depicting a bird’s-eye view of a tabletop with Cézanne-esque fruits, clocks, compasses, a knife, eggs, and what seems to be a disembodied pair of hands and a face.

This work by Lo—and all his others here, in fact—provide surreal documentation of the fleeting moments in time in which we make decisions that lead us down one path or another, whether we choose to dwell in the past, letting our relative melancholies consume us, or to become resilient en route to the present.

While my studies in art history presuppose that I should be more stimulated by the conceptual nature of DeLong’s work, I can’t help but feel drawn to Lo’s paintings, and to the emotional honesty which informs them.”

Written by Mariam Nader.

To view the full review please visit Canadian Art.

Tessar Sebastian Lo’s exhibition past, present, past-present, and Mark DeLong’s exhibition No Cover continues until April 22, 2012.

For sales and press inquires, please contact the gallery.

Press: Mark DeLong Reviewed on The Huffington Post

Mark DeLong’s current exhibition at the gallery received a review on The Huffington Post.

“DeLong paints abstract color-based works that are both monumental and a bit childlike. With titles like “The Beat Broke in Through the Window and Stole My Poem about the Shelf” and “Ducks Crossing Oppenheimer”, the artist invites us to look for a narrative in works that would normally be thought of as pure abstraction. With each search for a story we are navigating through DeLong’s acrylic jungle, and it can be easy to get lost. And yet, like all good artists, DeLong continues to explore the difficult relationship between abstraction and representation.”

To read the full review please visit The Huffington Post.

Mark DeLong’s exhibition No Cover continues until April 22, 2012.

To see a full list of available works from DeLong please visit his artist profile.

For sales and press inquires, please contact the gallery.

Press: Brendan Monroe on Hi-Fructose

Brendan Monroe was recently interviewed by Hi-Fructose Magazine and speaks on his current exhibition at the gallery.

“Oakland, CA based artist Brendan Monroe continues his visual research with a new body of work. These new works were gleaned from ideas he has been experimenting with over the last year, leaning towards physics and astronomy to stimulate his influences. His current works, a combination of paintings and sculptures, are currently on view at Cooper Cole Gallery in Toronto, Ontario.”

To read the full interview please visit Hi-Fructose Magazine.

Brendan Monroe’s exhibition “Observations of Light & Matter” continues at the gallery until March 25, 2012.

Press: Brendan Monroe

Brendan Monroe’s current exhibition at the gallery has been featured on both My Modern Met and The Huffington Post.

“Just yesterday, a brand new exhibition started at Cooper Cole Gallery in Toronto, Ontario called Observations of Light and MatterBrendan Monroe tells a story of a world filled with unique personalities and imaginary organisms. His dream-like scenes show human figures on a quest to find out more about the world they inhabit.”

See the full post on My Modern Met.


“The flowing forms and ambiguous movement of Monroe’s work has the capacity to satisfy the most aloof daydreamer and the hard-nosed computer scientist in one swoop — both become lost between wormholes and immersed in network data. No matter your approach, “Observations of Light and Matter” is sure to leave a lasting impression.”

See the full article on The Huffington Post.

Brendan Monroe’s exhibition Observations of Light & Matter continues at the gallery until March 25, 2012.

Press: Brendan Monroe Previewed on Juxtapoz

Brendan Monroe’s upcoming exhibition “Observations of Light & Matter” was previewed on Juxtapoz Magazine.

“On March 2nd in Toronto, Cooper Cole will be presenting a solo exhibition by Brendan Monroe, Observations of Light & Matter. Monroe, in his first solo exhibition in Toronto, will be presenting a series of paintings and sculptures that explores his scientific and imaginary organisms that have appeared in his work over the past few years, often inspired by science and often times directly derived from past scientific observations.”

To see the full preview please visit Juxtapoz Magazine.

Press: Ryan Travis Christian Review In Frieze Magazine

Ryan Travis Christian received a review for his most recent exhibition in issue 145 of Frieze Magazine.

“Death is not death in children’s cartoons – characters bounce back to life no matter how absurd the violence. This warping of mortality informs Ryan Travis Christian’s art works. His chiaroscuro graphite drawings recall the black and white Disney cartoons of the 1920s. The ‘River Rats’ series (2011) stylistically puns on the happy rodent Mickey Mouse, whose human aspirations Christian drowns in the gutter. A new cast of villains emerges, too: the blobby type with vacant eyes that multiplies at will, high on hijinks and frightful in their conformity. In nodding to early Disney animation, Christian fills in his characters with the cultural politics of that era. The hugely influential Disney animator Ub Iwerks emigrated from Germany to the US and gave life to Mickey. Iwerks was responsible for defining the Disney style and developed it simultaneous to German Expressionism. His Skeleton Dance of 1929 redefined the age-old dance-of-death genre for children, and Christian borrows freely from the campy horror of Iwerks’ cult classic, where a graveyard is a playground for death to rattle out its funeral song. Here, humour is horror in disguise.”

To read the full review please visit Frieze Magazine.

Ryan will be exhibiting in a two person show with Marissa Textor this coming May.

For press and sales information please inquire with the gallery.

Press: Andrew Schoultz & Jen Stark in Juxtapoz


The March 2012 issue of Juxtapoz Magazine features two exhibiting artists at COOPER COLE. Andrew Schoultz is featured on the cover and has a full spread in the issue. Schoultz will be exhibiting alongside Richard Colman this coming June at COOPER COLE. Gallery artist Jen Stark also has a spread in the issue showcasing work from recent exhibitions. For press and sales information please inquire with the gallery.

Press: Richard Colman Studio Visit on Hi-Fructose

Hi Fructose Magazine recently posted a studio visit with artist Richard Colman showcasing an upcoming mural commission for the Gagosian Gallery in Beverly Hills.

Colman will be exhibiting alongside Andrew Schoultz at COOPER COLE this coming June.

For press and sales information please inquire with the gallery.

To view more photos please visit Hi-Fructose.

Press: Anders Oinonen on Beautiful Decay


Anders Oinonen was recently featured on the blog Beautiful Decay. Below is an excerpt from the post.

Anders Oinonen, of Ontario, Canada, just opened “People people”, a solo show at Cooper Cole in Toronto. For a while now, Oinonen has been pushing the features of the face to new bounds in his paintings. The artist has removed familiar eyes, noses, and mouths from their intended plane, and inserted them along the lines of an Expressionist landscape. Such a presentation of the face -associated with communication of our inner life more than any other part of the body- in tumultuous states of despair and incredulity as stimulating blocks of color masterfully applied to canvas arranges a statement which is hard to miss and extensive in depth.

To view the full post please visit Beautiful Decay.

Press: Ryan Wallace & Chris Duncan on The Huffington Post


Ryan Wallace & Chris Duncan‘s exhibition Transmission Lines received some nice words on The Huffington Post.

“Ryan Wallace, hailing from New York, muses on roughly the same geometric form through various mediums and color capturing vastly different emotions, despite the seemingly minute differences between each piece. Over time the converging points in Wallace’s work cease to bec a reference point for the viewer, plunging the mind into a graceful drone. The texture of Wallace’s “Polemic” series are reminiscent of marble with minor speckled anomalies that make you search for answers.”

“Chris Duncan’s work zeroes in on an airy, ephemeral quality, approaching the notion of ‘undefined’ in a different manner. Duncan is less ambiguous with his materials, which are quite often crayon. However, in completely lacking any points of reference or geography, Duncan the same bewildering effect as his fellow exhibitor. Representing Oakland, CA, the lines of Duncan’s work are difficult to track, like staring into the bright California sun in an attempt to make out its shape. It is hard to tell whether the tonal lines are revolving around the circular mass depicted or if they are consuming it.”

Above is an excerpt from the review. To view the full article please visit The Huffington Post.

Transmission Lines runs until February 26, 2012.

Press: Anders Oinonen reviewed on Art Sync

Art Sync reviewed Anders Oinonens’ exhibition People People which recently opened at the gallery.

“While he dabbles in both more representational and more abstract artistic styles, Anders Oinonen’s most compelling paintings are his pseudo-portraits, in which basic elements of the face are assembled with wide brush-strokes and vivid colours. In People People, his current solo exhibition at Cooper Cole Gallery, faces are alternately combined and fragmented, all the while remaining instantly recognizable.

Oinonen clearly has a reverence for this often irrational aspect of human instinct, as his cheerful, child-like faces reflect Sagan’s “goony grin” right back at us. Indeed, his “Untitled” is practically the visual manifestation of Sagan’s idea: the child immediately locating a friendly face in the landscape. By choosing to approach the portrait in this manner, Oinonen still allows the viewer his sense of personal connection to the piece while also opening up entirely new possibilities for analysis.

So let’s dive into it: A tension apparent in People People is in defining the tenuous border between painting and subject. With his thick brushwork and garish colour choices, his pieces scream their identity as paintings rather than playing at representing reality. Ultimately, Oinonen appeals to the viewer’s natural tendency to search a painting for inherent “humanity,” no matter how loosely it represents this idea. In paintings such as “Lockung,” Danish painter Asger Jorn (Oinonen’s precursor and admitted idol) employs a similar technique, but with a critical difference: where in Jorn the simplistic face is layered over the landscape, Oinonen fuses the two. In doing so, he has relocated the human element to the very center of the painting, with the piece’s meaning constructed through the viewer’s recognition, rather than by the imposition of the artist. Oinonen’s portraits are thus highly interactive, inviting us to empathize with their subjects, all the while gently mocking our desire to do so.”

Above is an excerpt from the review, to view the full article please follow this link.