August 15 – September 2, 2018
Emerging Artist Exhibition featuring Claire Browne, Eshwar Prasad, Sage Szkabarnicki-Stuart and Jenn Woodall
SURGE II: Things to be said features the work of Claire Browne, Eshwar Prasad, Sage Szkabarnicki-Stuart and Jenn Woodall—winners of the 2018 Toronto Outdoor Art Fair (TOAF) Emerging Artist award.
Art is a vehicle for social change, bringing to light untold stories and drawing attention to issues that are most relevant and pressing. The artists chosen for this exhibition share a common thread in that they all attempt to bring attention to issues that affect the contemporary world. Selected based on their ingenuity, originality and efforts to push the boundaries of artistic practice into new directions, the artists in this exhibition reflect the most compelling work by emerging artists at the 2018 Toronto Outdoor Art Fair.
Presenting messages of empowerment, inclusivity and both historical and cultural reflection in their artworks, ‘Things to be said‘ provides alternative perspectives to social concerns in a way that encourages critical thinking and openness to new ideas. From colonial histories and the state of mental health to human impact on our environment and stereotypes of femininity—the work explores our misconceptions and offers contrasting narratives to better understand and engage with them.
Claire Browne art practice focuses on the connection between land and self-identity. Her family’s histories consist of travel, displacement and adaption to new lands and cultural spaces. Through painting she attempts to navigate the stories of her childhood allowing for new narratives to appear regarding cultural exchange, identity, and our colonial histories. Living and working in Toronto, Claire Browne graduated from OCAD University in 2015 with a BFA specializing in Drawing and Painting.
Eshwar Prasad’s works are distinguished observations of contemporary lifestyle and behavioural traits, that are voiced using quirky and playful visuals. Culture, colour and imagination drives his process of picking mundane viewpoints and then turning them into whimsical compositions. Guided by the heavy cultural influence of the eastern world, plus the pop surrealism in the west, his work reflects a unique style of graphic abstraction that has an abundance of wit and humour.
Sage Szkabarnicki-Stuart is a Toronto-based artist working in photography. Her work explores common objects, analyzing how context and repetition can influence their meaning. Analyzing modern conventions of utility and design, her work considers what role an object is designed to play in a consumer’s personal narrative. Her interest lies in bringing awareness to the ways in which objects and materials are weaved into the stories we tell about our lives and our identities.
Jenn Woodall is an award-winning illustrator and comics creator who lives in Toronto, Ontario. She recently graduated from OCADU with a Bachelor of Design in Illustration. Her work is primarily focused on feminist issues and exploring the depiction of women we see in media and popular culture. In her spare time, she can usually be found reading a comic book.
Nathan Heuvingh was the Director of Propeller Gallery until 2019. He is an independent curator, writer, and musician based in Toronto, Ontario. He is a graduate of OCAD’s Masters in Contemporary Art, Design and New Media Art Histories and received a Bachelor of Arts in Studies in Arts and Culture with a concentration in Curatorial Practices from Brock University. Heuvingh has experience in curating, exhibition development and arts administration and has held positions with a number of cultural institutions including OCAD University, Craft Ontario, Nuit Blanche, Rodman Hall Art Centre and Brock University Radio. He has a background in contemporary art, sound art, music and radio broadcasting and has written for various publications including Senses and Society and Earshot! Magazine among others.