Beach Arts Scene

This is Paradise is a show by encaustic artist Melissa Espina and PH1 Collective, which consists of Espina and digital film editor Pietro Gallo.

This is Paradise, by PH1 Collective
This is Paradise, by PH1 Collective

Espina is a Toronto native. She finished her OCADU undergrad thesis in Florence, Italy, and has exhibited throughout Europe and Canada. Her work is popular with designers and home stagers in the GTA. See more of her work at melissaespina.com.

Last year PH1 Collective was launched, combining photography and encaustic to explore ideas of nostalgia and memory.

This is Paradise runs from March 11 to April 4 at Yellow House Gallery, 921 Kingston Rd. An opening reception will be held from 6:30 to 9:30 p.m. on Thursday, March 12. RSVP to christina@yellowhousegallery.ca to attend.

Michael O’Brien is a Beach photographer in both senses of the term. He lives in the Beach, and chooses to point his lens at the beach, resulting in a body of work titled Earth Water Sky. art-michael o brien EWS

While O’Brien photographs many different subjects – portraits, nature, night work, cultural documentation – locals may find his view of the beach more striking than the average photo of the Leuty lifeguard station. The black and white images in Earth Water Sky are full of drama, with frozen moments of waves about to crash on shore, fleeting seconds of a perfect sky, and an eye for detail in a grand landscape.

An early childhood involving many moves gave him an appreciation for the subtleties of landscape and culture that define different places. O’Brien takes inspiration from photographers such as Manuel Alvarez Bravo and Sebastio Salgado, particularly in their ability to tell stories through photography.

O’Brien explained the factors that help set his work apart: “For me this is the difference between travel photography and tourist photography, between portraiture and a snapshot: passion, commitment and enthusiasm.”

Until March 31, O’Brien’s work will be hanging at the Remarkable Bean, 2242 Queen St. E. To view his work online visit michaelobrienphoto.com.

Neighbourhood Gallery at the Neighbourhood Unitarian Universalist Congregation on Hiawatha Road is hosting two shows until May 3.

In the south gallery is Out on a Limb. This show features work by the adult students at the ArtHeart Community Centre in the Regent Park area.

ArtHeart has been providing free visual arts programming and instruction to the Regent Park community for more than two decades. The organization’s intent is to empower participants by helping them learn skills, build self esteem, and express themselves through the act of creating.

More than 30 works are hanging as part of Out on a Limb, ranging from landscapes to abstract work, from portraiture to social and political commentary. For more on ArtHeart and the valuable work the centre does in its community see artheart.ca.

In the north gallery is A Personal Sacred Landscape, an invitational group show curated by Lauren McKinley Renzetti.

The show is centred on a theme of the journey artists take as they navigate through life. The work implies the path less taken on spiritual journeys, and covers nature, trees, paths, water and stone. The images chosen shared a sense of place and resonated as “sacred” with McKinley Renzetti.

Neighbourhood Gallery’s mandate is to share art for the beautification of the world. Visit nuuc.ca to find out how to visit the gallery and view the work in Out on a Limb and A Personal Sacred Landscape.

Liane Odze-Silver paints and draws, on canvas in oils, and on paper with mixed media. Her new works will be on display at Gerrard Art Space, 1475 Gerrard St. E., from March 11 to 29. An opening reception will be held from 2 to 5 p.m. on Saturday, March 14. art-gas-liane odze silver

For more on Odze-Silver and her work see lianeodzesilver.com. For gallery info, see gerrardartspace.com.


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