Friday, June 22, 2012

Elizabeth Babyn and Sandra Smirle at loop Gallery

Elizabeth Babyn and Sandra Smirle

loop Gallery is pleased to announce exhibitions by loop members Elizabeth Babyn entitled Sacred Connections and Sandra Smirle entitled Turvy.

Intrigued by Fibonacci’s number sequences, sacred geometry and our inter- connectedness with everything, Sacred Connections launches Elizabeth Babyn’s mixed media ‘Unity quilt’ with ‘truths’ contributed from the general public. The quilt is shown with depictions from sacred geometry and the natural environment, as well as a mixed media installation designed to receive truth offerings from gallery visitors to facilitate the ongoing growth of the ‘Unity Quilt.’

Elizabeth Babyn obtained her BFA in Drawing and Painting at the Ontario College of Art and Design. She and her husband relocated from Caledon, Ontario to Saskatoon in the early spring of 2011. Babyn has participated in group and solo shows in Ferrara Italy, Toronto and the surrounding area, with galleries that include Propeller, Spin, loop, SGI, and the McMichael Canadian Art Collection. She has been a loop member since 2003.

Turvy continues Smirle’s exploration of geographies of otherness, translated from aerial maps into hand and laser cut drawings. These works explore a narrative at the intersection of light, shadow, time, and place with special attention to how navigation and data-capture technologies twist and ‘tirve’ our world view, and how we as viewers are equally subject to observation by others.

Sandra Smirle is a mixed media artist whose work explores how new technologies distort our view of the world, and how we in turn are viewed by these mechanisms designed to track our movements.Smirle’s work is included in private and corporate collections in Canada, Australia and Europe. Her work was selected for inclusion in The Map as Art: Contemporary Artists Explore Cartography, published by Princeton Architectural Press. She is currently a MFA Candidate at Concordia University.

June 23 - July 15, 2012
Reception: Saturday, June 23, 2012, 2-5 PM
Q&A Session: Sunday, July 15th, 2012, 2-3PM

Images: (top) Unity Quilt (detail) and Truth Offering (installation, detail) mixed media, 2012; (bottom) Turvy, machine routered plywood, 2012      

Saturday, June 16, 2012

Q&A with Lorene Bourgeois and Ingrid Mida at loop Gallery

Constructions of Femininity by Ingrid Mida, Photo by Patricia Novju
This is the final weekend of the exhibitions of Lorene Bourgeois and Ingrid Mida at loop Gallery. In Entourage, Lorene Bourgeois presents her exquisitely rendered images that explore the ambiguity of the face, the head, and the body, disclosed or obscured through clothing, framing and head-dress. In Constructions of Femininity, Ingrid Mida considers the relationship between dress and feminine identity in the armour-like equipment of the female hockey player.

Entourage by Lorene Bourgeois, Photo by Peter Legris
There is a synchronicity in the work of the two artists with the black tulle of Mida's headless mannequins playing off the featured heads within Bourgeois drawings and paintings. As well, there is a unspoken element of gothic darkness seen in both artists work, which unifies the gallery.

The gallery is open Saturday noon to 5 pm and Sunday 1 to 4 pm. There will be a Question and Answer Session with both artists moderated by Peter Legris from 2 to 3 pm. 

Wednesday, June 13, 2012

Ingrid Mida's Exhibition Constructions of Femininity at Loop Gallery

Constructions of Femininity by Ingrid Mida at Loop Gallery
Photo by Patricia Novju
Ingrid Mida's exhibition Constructions of Femininity was selected by Toronto Life Magazine as one of five art shows to see in Toronto in June 2012. Bridging the worlds of art and fashion, she has juxtaposed the feminine silhouettes of the 18th century period with the armour-like equipment worn by hockey players. The pairing of mesh paniers, romantic tutus and petticoats constructed of mosquito mesh with hockey equipment that has been altered through hand beading, embroidery and stitching of ribbon, creates whimsical narratives that begs the question of how is femininity constructed.

Inspired by historic photo archives of women playing tennis and mountaineering while wearing crinolines in 1870s and 1880s, as well as women hockey players playing in long skirts in the 1890s, Ingrid also interviewed young female hockey players before undertaking this project. Their passion for the sport was defined by feats of courage, power, and  strength while using equipment designed for men, which often leaves them vulnerable to injury especially if they have curves.

The exhibition presents a complete hockey team including an alternate goalie. Each sculpture is named after a member of the Vancouver Amazon's, a women's team from the early part of the 20th century. Designed to provoke and delight, this exhibition has been a traffic stopper, with casual passersby stopping to express delight and awe at the highly original nature of this work.

The exhibition runs until Sunday, June 17th. loop gallery will be open on Wednesday to Saturday from noon to 5 pm and on Sunday from 1 to 4 pm. Ingrid will be giving a talk at 2-3 pm on Sunday. Visit her website/blog at

Saturday, June 2, 2012

Lorène Bourgeois at loop

 Lorène Bourgeois in front of White Mantle at the Opening Reception
Photo by Patricia Njovu 2012

With Entourage, Lorène Bourgeois juxtaposes large-scale drawings on paper with smaller paintings in oil on slate.  Her images investigate the ambiguity of the face, the head, and the body, disclosed or obscured through clothing, framing and head-dress.

Installation Shot of Entourage at loop Gallery
Photo by Peter Legris 2012
Here, head-dress is examined not only for its social or utilitarian functions, but also as a framing device and a theatrical artifact.  Thus, a woman’s bonnet, the veil of a nun, or a bow tied upon a girl’s head are reconsidered in these works as objects of strange beauty.

With the paintings on slate, the face is rarely seen in its entirety.  Instead, fragments of slate, with their imperfections, uneven shapes, grooves, veins, and gashes, become supports for more intimate views of cheek, eyes, ear or nose.  Strangely, the stone recalls the flesh, and this apparently cold material seems to come to life, much like a skin.

Entourage also plays with the idea of presence, allowing potential alliances to form between the faces fixed illusionistically upon the walls and those of viewers - each gazing at one another.

Lorène Bourgeois at loop
Photo by Peter Legris 2012
Lorène Bourgeois lives and works in Toronto.  Her work in drawing, painting, and printmaking has been exhibited across Canada, as well as in France, Korea, Russia, and the United Sates.  She is represented in private and public collections, including Canada Council Art Bank, Banff Centre for the Arts, Department of Foreign Affairs, Ernst & Young, MOCCA, National Bank of Canada, Richmond Hill Public Library, and University of Toronto (Hart House and Donovan Collection).

Lorène Bourgeois gratefully acknowledges the support of the Ontario Arts Council.

loop is open this weekend: Saturday noon to 5 pm and Sunday 1-4 pm. The artist will be in attendance at the gallery on Sunday, June 3 and Sunday, June 10.