Wednesday, May 9, 2012

Welcome Back

It's been a very long time since my last stint as Director/Curator at KWT contemporary was all-consuming! It has been a rewarding couple of years: building a terrific roster of artists, overseeing the development of a new corporate identity and website, managing, curating and installing up to three interlinked solo exhibitions a month, participating in three international art fairs, hosting a number of galas, lectures and events for not-for-profit-arts organizations... With 2500 square feet, the space was large by downtown Toronto standards, and had great street presence with abundant natural light in the front, segueing back to a darker, more intimate space at the rear (perfect for video and time-based installations). Given our location in an area undergoing rapid development, it is not surprising that the landlord saw the potential for "better opportunities". Our lease was up, and the gallery's owner and financial backer decided she would not meet the demand for a large rent increase. So, sadly, the doors at 624 Richmand St West are closed, and a new chapter begins. I'll be resuming my consultancy and art advisory service, A.K. Collings Fine Art, making time for more writing (and blogging!) and working on some curatorial projects.

Please  explore the gallery website for images and more detailed information about the gallery artists. Go to the gallery blog to see installation shots, and for news about our roster artists' activities, publications and accolades.

Here is a brief look at KWT contemporary over the past two years:

Our Booth at Papier 12, Montreal,  April 2012, featuring work by Liz Parkinson, Sean Martindale, Lauren Nurse, and Daryl Vocat.

Our booth at Art Toronto (Toronto International Art Fair) in October, 2011: looking through Jay Wilson's 12ft tall  toothpick "stalagmite", with paintings by Paul Dignan and Kieran Brent in the background.

And here is a sampling of some of the exhibitions, installations and events at KWT contemporary,  roughly in reverse chronological order. It will give you a sense of the wonderful space I had to work with.

 Jay Wilson's exhibition in January 2012

 Dinner party at the gallery for the artists.

Heather Nicol's "Salon" installation, Dec 2011

 Kieran Brent with "Will" and the real Will.

Alex D'Arcy

Rachael Wongs's installation (latex paint, blown glass elements)

Paola Savasta, winner of the 2011 William Huffman Award

Yvonne Singer. neon and plexi sculpture

 Svava Thordis Juliusson's installation, February 2011

 Paul Dignan

 Caroline De Mooy (oil on canvas) and John Paul Robinson (blown glass) November,  2010)

Many, many thanks to all the artists with whom I have had the privilege to work, and to gallery administrator Jessica Vallentin, interns Ebony Jansen, Emily Mahon, Victoria Lum, and our gallery owner and financial backer, Kristyn Wong-Tam, for an intensely rewarding, although far too brief, experience.

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