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Eleven new, intriguing visual arts exhibitions await you this summer at Harbourfront Centre!

TORONTO, July 10, 2006 — This summer, Harbourfront centre is pleased to showcase 11 exciting, diverse visual arts exhibitions. Many of these stimulating exhibitions explore the idea of power of place. Visitors are invited to walk in the shoes of the artists we are bringing to our galleries and experience intimate journeys that consider the powerful and formative connections to "place." Geography, history, memory all guide us as we struggle to find a sense of belonging and identity. They can direct us as clearly as a map or a compass. But does your heritage define you or does it make you part of a community? Do you belong to your neighbourhood or does it belong to you? What is your place in the world? Power of Place is part of an ongoing exploration of ideas-based programming at Harbourfront Centre, June through December 2006.

The public opening reception for the exhibitions takes place on Thursday, July 13, from 6 to 9 p.m. in York Quay Centre. Admission to the reception and the exhibitions is free. Exhibitions run until September 10, unless otherwise noted, at Harbourfront Centre, 235 Queens Quay West. For information on these exhibitions, the public can call 416-973-4000 or visit

Exhibition hours for Home/Representation and my streets (city): Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday, and Sunday, noon to 6 p.m.; Friday and Saturday noon till 8 p.m.; closed Monday except holiday Mondays, noon to 6 p.m. Regular hours for The Craft Studio: Monday to Saturday, 10 a.m. to 8 p.m.; Sundays, 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Regular hours for all other exhibitions: Monday to Saturday, 10 a.m. to 11 p.m. and Sunday, 10 a.m. to 9 p.m.

Home/Representation is an exploration of these terms through painted images and what they signify in the art practice of contemporary Ashkenazis. For instance, continuing the narrow discourse, "home" can be a style and an armature, the support on which an artist practice stands. But to interpret it both more broadly and more figuratively, it is also homeland, house and hearth. "Representation" is, of course a depiction; but it is also a democratic participation and a signifier of the artists own work and persona. The participating artists are Ruth Adler, Shelley Adler, Sybil Goldstein, Howard Lonn, Larry Middlestadt and Badanna Zack. Curated by Oliver Girling. The exhibition, part of the World Routes Summer Festival, Ashkenaz (August 30 to September 4), runs until September 4.

Alchemy and the Jewish Diaspora: The Power of Place to Transformseeks to display objects and representations of Jewish culture that have been transported out of their original environment and transplanted to new surroundings, trying to identify or experience the process of creating the new. The participating artists are Susan Brown, Joanne Circle, Temma Gentles, Fred Klap, Sue Krivel, Michael Milgram, Haya Nativ, Chashi Skobac and Juana Sleizer. The exhibition is part the World Routes Summer Festival, Ashkenaz.

In my streets (city), Toronto artist Brian Kipping is a modern day Rhyparagraphos, the ancient Greek Pliny's term for Painter of commonplace subjects. Whether finding images in his immediate neighbourhood as in this exhibition or from across Canada and beyond in his upcoming show at the Yukon Art Centre in November, the paintings are always depictions of everyday life in the city. “The Images of old greasy spoons and shop windows are not chosen for sentimental reasons but are of interest because on one hand they have survived through social changes and fashions and remained unaffected, but on the other hand are disintegrating before our eyes,” says Kipping.

From Christie Pits to Rogers Road, Neighbourhood of One, is a summer-long acknowledgement of the amazing front yards and houses of those places that landmark our Toronto streets and communities. The exhibition, featuring a mixture of photography and objects from participating homeowners, is an introduction to the artistic workmanship and creative vision of Toronto's singular and diverse communities of neighbours. This exhibition showcases the challenging "outsider" approach to the city street, to the houses they call home, and to their own local neighbourhood which great neighbours come to adopt. Curated by Duncan Farnan. With photography by Jill Kitchener.

Working with the sound project collective Murmur, we collected stories that reflect the power of place right here at Harbourfront Centre. Murmur is an archival audio project that collects and curates stories set in specific Toronto locations, told by Torontonians themselves. At each of these locations in Toronto, a sign with a telephone number and location code marks where stories are available. Patrons can call in on the mobile phone and listen to the story of that place while engaging in the physical experience of being there. At our Murmur listening station, patrons can access stories and memories about Harbourfront Centre.

Through the Lens of NOW is an exhibition by NOW photographers in celebration of the magazine’s 25th anniversary. Four of Toronto's most talented, original and recognizable NOW Magazine photographers are featured, capturing the essence of Toronto through their own unique lens. Throughout its 25 year history, the magazine has remained a vital cultural portal through which the city has viewed itself. Via hard-hitting, alternative journalism and resonant images, the pages of NOW Magazine have acted as a mirror of Toronto's contemporary urban landscape. The exhibition features the magazine contributing photographers Debra Friedman, Kathryn Gaitens, Steve Payne and Paul Till.

The large-scale drawings entitled Mirage are based on Alison Norlen’s photographs, images of bridges and the Brighton piers and represents a place from her past through memories of travel, autobiographical references, visual footnotes, and personal narration and metaphor. This work elaborates on the artist’s fascination with cultural spectacle like the bridge structures depicted in this series, which are dramatized by dissolving and creating haziness, indistinctiveness, lack of clarity and spatial ambiguity.

Defiant, Diligent and Delicate: Sally McCubbin and Surroundings: Robert Peyregatt features new glass works from current artists-in-residence.

Harbourfront Centre’s Artists’ Gardens are back for their 17th year with one new garden and 23 existing gardens. Since the programme’s inception in 1990, designers, craftspeople, performing artists and visual artists have created living installations across the Harbourfront Centre site that challenge traditional ideas about gardening. All the gardens are situated outdoors on the Harbourfront Centre site, 235 Queens Quay West. Curated by Dianne Bos, (1990 to 1999) and Patrick Macaulay, 2000 to present. A free self-guided tour map of the gardens will be available at York Quay Centre. Admission is free. Artists’ Gardens runs until October 31. Artists’ Gardens is supported by Sheridan Nurseries Ltd.

Toronto artist Lorraine Johnson designs SEEDS OF CHANGE, this year’s new garden addition. SEEDS OF CHANGE is planted in the guerrilla gardener spirit to reclaim neglected areas of our city. The plants are a mix of drought-tolerant native species and heritage food plants. All are appropriate for plantings in neglected urban places such as boulevards, laneways and abandoned lots. Guerrilla gardeners sometimes make “seed bombs” — balls of soil mixed with seeds, to be lobbed over fences into abandoned places where, it is hoped, the seeds will take root and “green” neglected pockets of the urban landscape. These garden beds offer an invitation to harvest ideas for your own guerrilla plantings throughout the orphaned corners of our cityscape and to turn waste places into productive spaces. Toronto-based Lorraine Johnson writes about cultural and environmental issues, and is active in the city's community gardening movement.

Artists’ Gardens Slide Lecture and Walk
Larry Sherk, horticulturist and consultant for Sheridan Nurseries gives a slide presentation and conducts a walking tour talking about the choice of plant material and their viability in an urban environment, how the artists have used them and how the gardens have evolved over the years on this site. The event takes place on Sunday, July 30 at 2 p.m. Meet in The Loft, located on the 2nd floor of York Quay Centre. Admission is free.

Nature in the Garage, is a project by 10 international and Canadian artists who have been invited to address nature and the environment by employing a standard garden shed that is placed in six locations throughout downtown Toronto. Three installations take place at Harbourfront Centre.Nature in the Garage,curated by Janet Bellotto, is carried out by Gallery 1313, in association with liveARTs and is in partnership with the City of Toronto. Locations are being monitored and viewed at Exhibition is currently on display at Harbourfront Centre until August 6.

Nature in the Garden features Noel Harding’s A Chirp, an inverted garden shed that is positioned off the ground. A Chirp becomes a unique urban wildlife feeder with 80 square feet of enclosed space for birdseed and vegetation. This nature pad in the heart of the city offers us a view of the interaction and bustling of wildlife that has often been driven away. Balancing out, and out of balance, Catherine Bodmer’s Pause represents a system of contained but uncontrolled growth. It emphasizes ideas of interruption and continuity in relation to nature and the urban environment. Surrounded by water, and situated by one of Canada’s Great Lakes, Yvonne Lammerich’s Island, is a shangri-la. This destination takes its reference from the classical concept of passage, specifically the passage from the world of the living to the realm we called Paradise. It references that imaginative world, one being a journey to the infinite and one in which conscious recognition discovers and confronts the confines ultimately defined by nature and time.


Media Contact:
Linda Liontis
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