Posted in Design
Contributed by Christopher Jones
01/27 2012

City Sponsors IDS Design Talks

The 12th annual Interior Design Show opened with a bang last night and the City of Toronto was ahead of the curve co-sponsoring a fascinating day-long series of talks called Conversations in Design, featuring a top-drawer list of speakers including renowned New York designer Amy Lau, above left, and founder Michael Bruno, right, as well as architect/designer Piero Lissoni, Design Within Reach CEO John Edelman, Readymade’s Stephen Burks and other trailblazers and trendspotters. It was an inspiring warm-up to the main IDS event with Trade Day, today (Jan. 27), followed by public access on Saturday and Sunday.

IDS is Canada’s largest contemporary design fair and the show features everything from local and international retailers and manufacturers to emerging Canadian designers looking for a foothold in the marketplace. This year’s show is exceptional with loads of jaw-dropping exhibits and exciting new product offerings. Highly recommended.


Posted in Art, Dance
Contributed by Christopher Jones
01/25 2012

Black History in Focus

Toronto photographer Michael Chambers
February is Black History Month and to get the party started TD Bank hosted a launch event at the Royal York Hotel’s Imperial Room Monday evening to unveil this year’s BHM poster by photographer Michael Chambers, above.

It also so happens that Chambers has curated an exhibition of posters celebrating black dance in Canada, which opens today at BAND Gallery (823A Bloor Street West). The BAND show is called Motion and the opening kicks off the 24th Annual International Association of Blacks in Dance (IABD) Conference and Festival hosted by Dance Immersion and running all weekend at Toronto’s Sheraton Centre and the Queen Elizabeth Theatre.


Posted in Design
Contributed by Christopher Jones
01/24 2012

Design Week Overload

RobIt’s design week in Toronto: in galleries along Queen Street West and Dundas West designers are furiously installing a range of shows focused on myriad themes and objects, all of them part of what’s officially called the Toronto Design Offsite Festival or TODO for short (Jan. 23 – 29). Popular annual events include Capacity (featuring female designers), Canadian design retailer MADE’s Radiant Dark and the Gladstone Hotel’s always surprising Come Up To My Room, where design teams transform vacant guest rooms and hallways with always beguiling results. Do Design spreads out across the Dundas West neighbourhood Jan. 26 – 29.

With the obvious exception of Capacity, independent local designer Rob Southcott, left, is or has been a part of virtually all of those events. He’s also shown work in the Prototype and Studio North exhibits at the Interior Design Show, Canada’s biggest design event, now in it’s 12th year (Jan. 26 – 29). IDS has put Toronto on the design map and while the event pales compared to world-beating festivals in Milan, New York, Kortrijk or Cologne, Toronto is definitely making a mark, thanks in part to the explosion of coverage on design blogs and other media that permit the design world to check in with us whether they make it into town or not. READ MORE

Posted in Art, Street Culture
Contributed by Christopher Jones
01/12 2012

The Mayor of Photo City

Photoblogger Sam Javanrouh
If Toronto isn’t the world capital of photoblogging, it’s certainly near the top of the heap. In last week’s Photoblog Awards — handed out each year by – Toronto photographers captured four of the top 12 spots in the Best American Blog category. Sam Javanrouh, above, the shooter behind daily dose of imagery, was a finalist in three categories (Most Popular Photoblog, Best American Photoblog and Best Street Photography) and beat all comers to take the Most Popular crown.

Javanrouh is happy to add the accolade to his long list of recognitions. He’s been blogging since 2003 when hardly anyone had heard of a photoblog. His goal then, as now, was simply to capture and portray his adopted city – Javanrouh emigrated from Tehran in 1999 – in an effort to show his friends and family back home how his new life was unfolding.


Posted in Art
Contributed by William Huffman
01/10 2012

Snow Storms New York

Michael Snow chats with admirers
Last weekend, New Yorkers enjoyed a unique meteorological phenomenon! As temperatures rose on Saturday (January 7) to a balmy 16 degrees Celsius, the city was none-the-less hit by some serious snow, artist Michael Snow, that is!

The Canadian icon (above left in plaid) — a prolific visual artist, filmmaker and musician — opened his latest solo exhibition, entitled In the Way, at the venerable Jack Shainman Gallery. Manhattan’s Chelsea neighbourhood became a temporary embassy outpost as Toronto Arts Council, in partnership with Canada Council for the Arts and Government of Canada in New York, hosted a special exhibition preview.