The Ministry of Artistic Affairs
Saturday, October 1, 2011

Toronto will be welcoming a new contemporary gallery this coming Wednesday evening. With its debut public reception, Daniel Faria Gallery will open its doors for the very first time on the evening of October 5, 2011, with a group show featuring three internationally-exhibiting Canadian female artists. Titled Saint Helen, the show will include new works by Kristine Moran, Shannon Bool, and Elizabeth McIntosh.

Though new galleries open in this city all the time, few are received with such excited anticipation. Gallery owner Daniel Faria has been an active and admired fixture in the art scene in this city for more than a decade. Holding a Masters degree in Art History from York University and having sat on the board of directors of the important artist-run non-profit space Mercer Union, Faria was the face of Monte Clark Gallery's Toronto outpost for nearly ten years (the gallery was renamed Clark & Faria in 2009 until his departure earlier this year). In addition to his directing work at Clark & Faria, he established a respected name for himself as an independent curator, consultant and critic. On top of all of these accolades, however, Faria is best known for being a great guy; he is always happy, energetic, hyper-knowledgeable, approachable, and generous with his time. Obviously one of the favorite insiders of the local art community, Faria's daring leap of faith is being cheered on by everyone who knows him, including The Ministry.

The first exhibition in Daniel Faria Gallery's brand new space at 188 St. Helens Avenue is inspired by the gallery's location. According to legend (and the gallery's press release), St. Helen travelled to the Holy Land in search of the "one true cross". Her expedition resulted in her being named the patron saint of new discoveries. St. Helen’s ardent desire to explore and discover something new was the starting point for this exhibition. With spirits similar to St. Helen’s, each of the artists in the exhibition strive to make new discoveries by exploring the possibilities of paint. Each, in her own way, is contributing to the advancement of contemporary painting. Bool, McIntosh and Moran also share an interest in achieving a balance between abstraction and representation in their work.

Based in Berlin, Shannon Bool draws upon several references in her wide-ranging practice. Her paintings display an interest in space and ornament, as well as various systems of representation in the history of art. Bool’s paintings on silk are translucent, reading as veils or curtains concealing things behind their appealing surfaces. Based on found forms, Bool alters the patterns slightly creating her own unique, almost abstract, compositions.

Bool was born in Victoria, BC, and currently lives and works in Berlin. Bool studied at Emily Carr in Vancouver, Cooper Union in New York and Staedelschule Frankfurt. She has had solo exhibitions at the Kunstverein Boon, the Musee D’Art Moderne d’Alsace and the Frankfurter Kunstverein. Bool’s work was featured in the Phaidon publication Vitamin D in 2005.

Brooklyn-based Kristine Moran also creates paintings that engage in a dialogue between abstraction and representation. The starting point for Moran’s paintings is the idea of a figure or a space undergoing a sort of metamorphosis. The figure shifts from the recognizable into something irrational and abstract. In “Airport”, the female figure experiences a moment of psychological and emotional change that is captured in Moran’s dynamic brushstrokes.

Moran was born in Montreal, QC, and currently lives and works in Brooklyn, NY. She graduated from the Ontario College of Art and Design in 2004, and in 2008 she received her Masters of Fine Arts from Hunter College in New York City. Moran’s international exhibitions include: Monica De Cardenas Gallery, Milan; Clark & Faria, Toronto; Museum of Contemporary Canadian Art, Toronto; Western Exhibitions, Chicago; Nicelle Beauchene, NYC. Moran’s paintings will be included in the upcoming Phaidon publication Vitamin P2.

Elizabeth McIntosh, who is based in Vancouver, and whose work in this exhibition appears courtesy of Diaz Contemporary in Toronto, creates bold, formal paintings based on the repetition of basic abstract forms that allude to representational elements. As noted by Diaz Contemporary, “McIntosh’s paintings demonstrate her interest in improvisation and the making of painting into a deliberately undefined journey.”

McIntosh currently lives and works in Vancouver, BC. She graduated from York University in 1992 and received her MFA from Chelsea College of Art and Design, London, UK in 1996. She has exhibited at the Contemporary Art Gallery in Vancouver and the Vancouver Art Gallery. Her works are in the collections of the National Gallery of Canada and the Art Gallery of Ontario. McIntosh is represented by Diaz Contemporary in Toronto.

With its inaugural exhibition, Daniel Faria Gallery begins its own journey and explorations. Situated on St.Helen’s Avenue in a renovated industrial work site in West Toronto, the 3,000 square foot gallery’s subsequent exhibitions will aim to provide the art community with the opportunity to explore and discover the new.

We'll be watching and hoping to share in the discovery.

"Saint Helen"
Featuring works by Kristine Moran, Shannon Bool and Elizabeth McIntosh
Daniel Faria Gallery
188 St Helens Avenue, Toronto
Opening Reception: Wednesday, 5 October 2011, 6-9pm

By Randy Gladman for The Ministry of Artistic Affairs.