David Liss, Curator, MOCCA: Empire of Dreams
Last night the much-anticipated MOCCA show “Empire of Dreams: Phenomenology of the built environment” previewed at the Queen St. museum. The show features an impressive selection of Toronto based artists working in virtually all media. While each piece seeks to express our often intimate relationships to the constructed environment, the artists interpretations are predictably individual. In his speech, Liss summarized his philosophy for curation of the show, which was to keep the initial concept simple and “leave it to the artists to complicate things.”
A few highlights of the resulting artisanal complexities are Tristram Lansdowne’s arresting watercolour articulations of decrepit graffiti marred buildings; T&T’s fantastical sculptural and graphic explorations of utopian landscapes; Margaret Learns to Drive from There to Here– David Han’s suburban fueled multi-channel video installation; and a first glimpse of Dorian Fitzgerald’s seamless transition to seamless painting.
The real party is happening Saturday night when the show opens to the public. Gallery goers were tempted to return with the promise of more work including a first sight of Dan Bergeron’s new façade for the gallery. A piece of advice for prospective attendees- no need to sneak outside and choke with the smokers for fresh air- An Te Liu is looking after you as soon as you step in the gallery.
The show runs until August 15- check back here for select artist profiles throughout the summer.