As always, it’s a pleasure to introduce outstanding artists and TOAF award recipients to you.
Alex Thompson’s technically meticulous etchings and his vigorous contemplations on the built landscape garnered him the $2,000 cash award for Best of 2D Works. Our thanks to Nicholas Metivier Gallery for their generous support of this award.
Dorian Scott’s intricate and contemplative halos are simply divine. She earned the Honourable Mention 2D Works supported by our friends at Above Ground Art Supplies.
See more of their work and read the judges’ thoughtful reflections below.
The captivating presence of these works already shines through screens so we can only imagine the wow factor of a close encounter. The great news is that TOAF is returning in its full glory (fingers crossed) to Nathan Phillips Square this July 15-17, 2022. So, mark your calendars to see Alex Thompson and Dorian Scott’s works, as well as an incredible array of exceptional artists face-to-face again!
Alex R.M. Thompson – 2021 Best of 2D Works
"In this series that explores representations of the built landscape and it's structures, there is a feeling of alienation and melancholy. The presence and marks of society are there on the construction sites and architecture, and yet they are devoid of a human body. The artist acts as a sort of chronicler of a historicized future cityscape through these images. I was impressed with the theme, scale, and ambition of this series of works.
There is a deep engagement with the subject and attention to detail, both conceptually and technically. Alex Thompson’s works are innovative and reflect a strong independent voice that questions the impacts of land use and development… I am excited to follow the career of this emerging artist."
– Karen Tam, Artist and 2021 Judge of Best of 2D Works
About Alex and his work
"My print work binds together the structures and infrastructures of the post-industrial city with the human subject, forming hybrid cityscapes that map processes of excavation, planning, construction, and demolition onto personal identity formation…The malleability of copper enables the constant reworking, adaptation, and restating of drawings on the plate surface, aptly mirroring the cycles of development while capturing the erasure inherent in occupying and building on the land.
My work considers the physical, structural, ideological, and psychological costs embodied in the components that comprise our environment, investigating the intersecting dialogues that meet in the field of contemporary architecture. In engaging with alternative versions of spatial and temporal relationships between our structures, I seek to encourage viewers to consider how their surroundings inform their personal development, and vice versa."
On receiving the award
"I was fortunate to receive the "Best of 2D Works" award for my body of etching work at the Toronto Outdoor (Online) Art Fair. The award came at a particularly significant juncture, as I am in the process of entering into the final few months of my Master's degree. Receiving recognition for the aesthetic value, conceptual interest, and technical execution of this body of work is exceptionally meaningful, and I find myself drawing inspiration from the notion that my work sparks intrigue and resonates with viewers. Moreover, to have been selected from amongst a pool of exceptionally talented and driven artists working in a range of media, styles, and traditions is a tremendous honour."
Dorion Scott – 2021 Honourable Mention 2D Works
"With references to historical sources, paintings, architecture, and contemporary art, these contemplative and quiet pieces form a cohesive and conceptually strong body of work. As studies of light, Dorion Scott’s artworks attempt to capture and put into physical form the immaterial. It is by the hand of the artist in reproducing halos found in the art of the Madonna through beadwork, thread, and textiles, that we can also make connections to the historical invisibility of women’s labour and by extension craft. The strength and beauty of these minimalist artworks lies not just in the considered choice of materials, colours, compositions, and process, but also in Scott’s skill in creating an experience for the viewer today that echoes how one may have felt viewing a Botticelli, a Rauschenberg, a Cassatt, a Saville, an Emin, etc. in their times."
– Karen Tam, Artist and 2021 Judge of Honourable Mention 2D Works
About Dorion and her work
"The halo is representative of the divine in art, yet, there is no reference of its existence in Bible texts. This pure abstract form was created and interpreted by artists to illuminate the consecrated for centuries.
This work re-presents a collection of halos sourced from art of the Madonna, devoid of context, but maintaining the physical properties of the halo; as a disk of floating light.
Truth is ascribed to reality, constructing the halo in its physical form credits human authorship."
We are returning to Nathan Phillips Square this July
Toronto Outdoor Art Fair returns to Nathan Phillips Square on July 15 – 17, 2022 – Rain or Shine! Our wildly popular Online Fair featuring artists from across Canada will also be live at TOAF.ca from July 8 – 17, 2022.
60 Works/60 Years co-presented by the City's Market Gallery, featuring works collected by the City from TOAF over the years through the Mayor's Purchase Award. It has been extended until December 2022! It is open to the public and free to attend.