Sharlene Rankin, director of The Telephone Booth Gallery, presents a sequel of sorts to the ever-successful exhibit she curated last winter called ‘Local Call, a Junction Neighbours Group Exhibition.’
Ever since she opened the gallery, on the north side of Dundas Street West, just east of Runnymede Road, about two years ago, Rankin has come to realize what an artists mecca the West Toronto Junction has become. Painters, sculptors and photographers – among a plethora of other creative types – live and work in the area. Last year’s exhibit grew out of an impromptu conversation with artists David McClyment and Tim Whiten, who both live within steps of the gallery.
This year’s exhibit “Part II” is bringing artists from both the Junction and its neighbouring community, The Junction Triangle, together in a show that’s been coined ‘By the Dozen,’ which debuts Jan. 16.
The “diverse” exhibition provides the opportunity to bring together the local arts community while exhibiting some of the “amazing talent” in the area, according to Rankin. By the Dozen also provides the opportunity to highlight the neighbourhood’s small-town community feel within the city, including a nod to the regulars at the Baker’s Dozen coffee shop located directly across from the gallery.
Linda Martinello, a multi-disciplinary painter whose work focuses on history, myth and landscape, is one of the eight artists whose work will be on display as part of ‘By the Dozen.’
“This is an area that’s evolving, especially for artists,” Martinello told The Villager on Tuesday, Jan. 8.
Martinello, whose live-work studio is in the Junction Triangle, has been in the area since 2006. Although there were some artist studios when she arrived, the majority were still closer to Queen Street West.
“Now, so many people have their studios here,” Martinello said.
She and Rankin have known each other for several years since she was an intern at the Olga Korper Gallery and Rankin was the executive director of the Art Dealers Association of Canada.
“We’ve been friends for a long time,” said Martinello, adding Rankin asked her to be a part of By the Dozen.
Martinello will be exhibiting one of her paintings, oil paint on polyester film, a collage based on the North American South West. She said she’s inspired by historically significant places “that have stories attached to them.”
“The work I’ve been doing is based on the North American South West,” said the artist who has lived, worked and studied in Italy, Mexico and New York.
Martinello has also travelled to Turkey and Greece, which has inspired her work. She knew since she was a kid that she wanted to pursue a career as an artist.
“My mom has kept some of my stuff since I was in kindergarten. I was always colouring. I’d draw on the walls and my dad would tell my mom to let me do it. I’ve always been encouraged,” she said.
Sculptor Badanna Zack, whose studio is in the Dupont Street and Symington Avenue-area, will be showing a life-size mixed media sculpture of three urinals. The veteran sculptor’s work, known to amuse, includes her controversial flying penises and papier-mache pitch forks, sewing machines, urinals and human skulls. Zack, a Montreal native, studied at Concordia University before moving to Toronto. She’s been a professional artist since the 1960s. Her work is featured in a number of publications, public and private collections. Zack is the only sculptor taking part in ‘By the Dozen.’
The exhibit continues until Feb. 17. The Telephone Booth Gallery is situated at 3148 Dundas St. W. Visit www.telephoneboothgallery.ca for further details.
By the Dozen features art by artists: