This was my third time showing work through Toronto Public Library’s Art Exhibit’s program – a program that allows local artists to exhibit 2D pieces in select libraries across the city. It’s a great program for artists who may not be signed to galleries and need walls to showcase their art. While you have to take on everything yourself and be artist, curator, promoter and art installer, the program allows artists to show their work for a whole month and attract audiences that they may not receive in conventional art gallery spaces. I really believe it’s an invaluable program and I feel really lucky that my last three submissions were accepted (I tried and failed 2 times before getting my first acceptance).
That being said, the space at the Bloor Gladstone Library made for a departure in terms of exhibition experience, compared to my shows at the Runnymede and Northern District Library.
First, the exhibition space is a multi-purpose room where the furniture is constantly being moved around for library programs and sometimes even used as storage space. This created a more transient feeling for the space, compared to the Runnymede and Northern District library exhibit spaces which were areas of the library dedicated to showcase artwork.
The second thing that made for a less than stellar show experience was that things that I would usually have available at my exhibitions would always go missing! I always had a comment/feedback notebook and pens, along with some promotional brochures (and this time a Slate Art Guide magazines). By the end of the show I would have a collection of comments and messages from not only my friends but strangers that happened upon my show. Sadly these kept on going missing, despite me replacing them whenever I noticed they were missing. Were my items being stolen? Or removed by an overzealous janitor?
Despite this, I find it is always so humbling to be able to share art work with my friends and also complete strangers. And the staff at the Bloor/Gladstone Library were very supportive of myself and the Art Exhibits program.
I’ll always be grateful for the opportunity to show my work and thankful for all my friends who took time out to visit the library to see my art 💖