Upgrade Your Walls
words by Amanda Lew Kee
An artist has the responsibility to evoke emotion and trigger thought that transcends the viewer’s perspective beyond first glance. Curating a personal collection of contemporary art can be both challenging and pleasurable. Whether your interest is in conversational or investment, aim to collect the pieces that speak to you. Better yet, consider this mix of established and emerging Canadian contemporary artists to add to your home or office.
Limited Edition 9 colour lithograph, 19” x 22” (ABOVE)
Gary Taxali was born in Chandigarh, India and raised in Toronto, Canada. Taxali produces mixed media paper work, paintings and lithograph prints that are inspired by satirical advertising art and vintage comics. Common themes of his work range from human relationships, love, isolation, economic despair, and frustration. A Taxali hanging on your wall will lighten the constant paradoxes in life with a style that he refers to as “wacky”.
Douglas Coupland. Pop Heads. 2012
Acrylic and epoxy over top pigment print
36″ x 43.5″
Born on a Canadian NATO base, writer, graphic designer and visual artist, Douglas Coupland is a well-established Canadian contemporary artist to know. His striking use of colour and perpetual delivery of humor takes you on an exploration of pop culture, contemporary issues, and the influences of technology.
Andy Dixon. Group of Seven, 2015.
Acrylic & oil pastel on framed canvas. 91” x 61”
Vancouver contemporary painter Andy Dixon has been compared to Rousseau, Matisse, and Picasso. Dixon boldly blends bright colours with classic subjects that range from historical figures, reclining nudes, still life, and royal portraiture. His coarse application of paint and colour, and his approach to light and depth makes for a rich conversational piece.
Donald Robertson, Royal Tenenbaums. 2015
Screenprint on Coventry Rag 290gsm
Despite Donald Robertson’s keen eye for colour and proportion, fashion’s favorite illustrator once flunked out of art school. With the dedication of a true artist, Donald grew his talent into collaborations with J. Crew, Smashbox, and Holt Renfrew to name a few. His stylized portraits fashion textured brush strokes and display an array of characters ranging from pop culture classics, to fashion icons, and trendsetters.
Sarah Anne Johnson, Explosions. 2011.
Unique chromogenic print hand painted with photospotting and acrylic ink
A Yale graduate and Winnipeg resident, Sarah Anne Johnson pushes the boundaries of photographic expression. Based on a 12-day excursion, Johnson’s most recent series titled Arctic Wonderland shares a social-ecological perspective on the barren North. Johnson layers unique chromogenic landscape prints with whimsical hand paints of muted transparent colours that cast a tone of ire familiarity to manufactured life.