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Oct. 25, 2010 

Art Toronto 2010, Oct. 28-Nov. 1, 2010, presents 107 galleries by 13 countries in the 11th Toronto International Art Fair, which takes place at the Metro Toronto Convention Center. The opening-night gala on Oct. 28 is a benefit for the Art Gallery of Ontario; tickets start at $200.

For a detailed look at the primary galleries taking part in Art Toronto, click here.

The fair is sponsoring two curated exhibitions. "Canadian Art Now," organized by Richard Rhodes, the editor of Canadian Art magazine, presents "True Stories: A Photo Excursion," featuring works by Donald Weber, Evan Lee, Alison Rossiter and Thomas Kneubühler.

Also, there is "Everything Must Go," organized by Jeremy Laing, which is billed as a "luxury boutique" featuring work by Toronto artists Young & Giroux and Derek Sullivan, Montréal's Valérie Blass.

Also making its first-ever appearance at Art Toronto (and in all of Canada, for that matter) is the BMW Art Car. African painter Esther Mahlangu’s 1991 Art Car is featured; she was the first woman to do one of the series, and used her Ndebele tribe’s traditional pattern in the design. BMW Canada is Art Toronto’s official vehicle sponsor, and visitors to the event are urged to stop by the BMW Canada booth for a chance to win a collection of limited edition BMW Art Car miniatures.

Two magazines have also developed special promotions in connection with Art Toronto. Subscribe to Canadian Art here -- it’s $24 Canadian -- and receive a ticket good for free admission to the fair. Or, for design affianados, subscribe to the design mag Azure here -- 16 issues is $54.95 -- and get a free ticket to Art Toronto.

Visitors to the city have plenty to see if they can tear themselves away from the festivities at the Convention Center. The city is replete with galleries, alternative spaces and museums, and a few of the top attractions are listed here. Most of the galleries are also exhibiting at Art Toronto.

Angell Gallery, a pioneer in Toronto’s West Queen West Design District, opened by Jamie Angell in 1996, opens with a first solo show by Berlin-based expressionist Stefanie Gutheil, whose show of Boschian dreamscapes is titled "Animalicious Sausage Suspicions."

Birch Libralato offers the visual drolleries of Scottish-Canadian-Los Angeleno Euan Macdonald, whose advert for his show, "The First and the Last," features only an image of a cat on a keyboard.

Galerie Simon Blais boasts a show by Canada’s unique hard-edge abstract-expressionist Jacques Hurtubise (b. 1939) titled "Roadscape."

At Galerie Donald Browne, Charles Stankievech (b. 1978) is presenting his rollicking "Ghost Rockets World Tour," a series of 12 "rocket launch spectacles. . . paired with a pop song" at sites around the world, which are designed to map the history of ballistics.

Scott McFarland’s show of photographs from the small island Sans Souci -- "without worries" -- is in its final days at Clark & Faria, while the show of installations by the comic Canadian conceptualist Iain Baxter is coming to a close at Corkin Gallery.

Diaz Contemporary presents hybrid assemblages by the Toronto-based artist Kim Adams (b. 1951) -- perhaps best known for works that take the form of eccentric vehicles -- that revisit some of his ideas from the 1980s, in a show titled "New Old Work (Love Birds)."

At Barbara Edwards Contemporary visitors can catch the tail end of a show of large-scale watercolors of the figure by Eric Fischl, while at Leo Kamen Gallery has astonishing new axionometric photographs -- yes, photos, not 3D architectural drawings -- by Montreal artist Alain Paiement (b. 1960).

Olga Korper Gallery has on view a show of John Brown’s evocative, primitivist paintings on panel, in which severe images are built up with a flurry of strokes.

Clint Roenisch Gallery is presenting a show by the Montreal artist Sylvain Bouthillette (b. 1963), who "migrates relentlessly between low culture and creative high fever," to paraphrase critic James Campbell. 

Nikola Rukaj Gallery has new works on paper by Julian Schnabel at its gallery on Eglinton Avenue. 

At Georgia Scherman Projects are photos by the Toronto native John Massey (b. 1950) of his own carefully, and colorfully, constructed sets based on Jean-Luc Godard’s Le mépris.

For a quick look at the auction market for Canadian art, Sothebys Toronto is mounting an exhibition of its fall sale of Canadian art at the Ritz Carlton Hotel in Montreal on Nov 4, 2010, with the sale taking place at the ultramodern Royal Ontario Museum in Toronto on Nov. 23, 2010.

Speaking of the ROM, with its sparkling new design by Frank Gehry, the museum is a draw in itself. Special exhibitions include "The Warrior Emperor and China’s Terracotta Army," a blockbuster of over 200 objects, including ten of the figures themselves. Also on view is "El Anatsui, When I Last Wrote to You about Africa" and a show of contemporary photo-based art by African Canadian artists, "Position as Desired."

Another big-ticket museum show is "Julian Schnabel: Art and Film" at the Art Gallery of Ontario. "Traffic: Conceptual Art in Canada 1965-1980," a touring show including a critical mass of artists from inside Canada and beyond, ranging from David Askevold and John Baldessari to Michael Snow and Lawrence Weiner, is at several of the University of Toronto galleries.

At the Power Plant are Ian Wallace’s muscular photo-paintings of the financial district, "The Economy of the Image," along with Pae White’s new tapestry, commissioned as part of the gallery’s regular commissioning program. And, in conjunction with Art Toronto, the Power Plant presents "Power Talks," including New York art maven Thea Westreich and scholar and writer Thomas Crow.

Finally, there’s Montreal-based artist Randall Anderson, with three sculptures for the nomadic era, geometric constructions, each in a primary color, exhibited first on the drive from Montreal to Toronto and now parked on pull-trailers in the Toronto Sculpture Garden.

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