Author Archive

Forger’s Art: Werewolves (A Review)

Werewolves: A Journal of Transformation by Alice Carr is not actually by Alice Carr. Of course the back cover blurb claims that the contents of Werewolves faithfully reproduce those of a journal found by hikers on the outskirts of Cuyahoga Valley National Park, Ohio. In place of the usual author’s blurb, a “publisher’s note” details

Tiny Kitten Teeth: Retro Cute with Some Odd Drinking Habits

The other day, while pawing absent-mindedly through an old cardboard box of miscellanea, I happened upon a treasure trove of Children’s Record Guild 78s. Dressed in garish, dog-eared sleeves, and bearing titles like, Mendelssohn’s… A Midsummer Night’s Dream, Swing Your Partner, and Said the Piano to the Harpsichord, the actual records themselves are no great

Kate Beaton and The History of Awesome

Kate Beaton is the kind of artist that makes my job difficult. You see — she’s awesome. So much so that it’s difficult to write anything at all about her work without merely waxing poetical about said awesomeness ad nauseum. That is, without descending into a fangirlish quagmire so thick with praise and adoration that

SCREAM (but hold the Universal Angst of Modern Man)

Edvard Munch’s The Scream (1893–1910) is among the most well-known and widely reproduced icons of Western art. Given the four versions (in paint and pastel) plus a lithograph made by Munch himself, The Scream has been a somewhat promiscuous and democratic image from the start. Over the last fifty years, everything from fine art prints

When Banksy Comes to Town

“Banksy came to Toronto!” Ah ha (I think, too groggy for an exclamation point) so I didn’t leave my cellphone set to “loud”— I merely dreamed the obnoxious ring-tone, and now for the surreal conversation. No doubt the scene shall soon shift without warning to a seaside resort or Santa’s underground lair or somesuch. “…

The Ghosts of Rolly’s Garage. Or, Rediscovering AT.AW’s Orphans

Ambling up Ossington Ave. the other day (which, up-and-coming-neighbourhood status notwithstanding, I rarely do) I came across an establishment called Meta Gallery, located in a white-painted building built like an auto-mechanic’s garage and set back from the side walk. The adjoining building’s northernmost wall stretched out, painted black-on-black with a peculiar clouds-shaped artefact of more

Where History and Comedy Dance Beneath a Hyperlink’s Gentle Glow: On The Thrilling Adventures of Lovelace and Babbage

In matters of art on the internet, conceptual artists have a habit of getting there first and leaving behind little more than tedious ghosts of their abstract inspirations. Sometimes it takes an artist from the commercial world to build something truly awesome on that old territory, something destined to do more than just stick around

Weird Treasures at The Grange

It’s a given that any review is going to hand the reader a pair of expectacles to wear when sallying forth to view the object in question with their own eyes. It’s a rare thing to come across an object where that taint could make a significant difference in the experience—but so help me, the

The AGO Can Ignore Halloween, But That’s Not Stopping Me: A Guided Tour for Hallowe’en

I’d wager that for most everyone reading this, the Art Gallery of Ontario is one of the last places you’d think of when I say the words “horror,” “ghostly,” “creeptacular” or “Halloween.” Since its recent reconstruction (what with its slick modern architecture and interiors so brightly-lit that shadows tell tales of it to their little