General Hardware Contempory

General Hardware Contemporary
Inaugural Exhibition

October 21 – November 12, 2010
Opening: Thursday October 21, 6:30 – 11 pm
1520 Queen Street West Toronto M6R 1A4 info@generalhardware.ca 416 516 6876
Gallery Hours: Wednesday - Saturday 12 - 5 pm or by appointment

Featuring paintings by Canadian artists Alex Bierk, Nicole Collins, Joe Fleming and Sasha Pierce along with works on paper by Berlin based artist Agathe de Bailliencourt.

Occupying an old hardware store in Toronto’s vibrant Parkdale, General Hardware Contemporary shares an inspiring and passionate vision for contemporary art with Canadian and international artists, both established and emerging.

Agathe de Bailliencourt
Agathe de Bailliencourt is a painter, born in 1974 in Paris and currently based in Berlin. She works on canvas and paper, as well as in public space and architecture. Agathe de Bailliencourts’ work has been shown at various galleries and institutions around the world, including: Paris, Berlin, New York City, Shanghai, Tokyo, Osaka, New Delhi and Singapore. In 2010, Agathe de Bailliencourt is commissioned for a permanent installation at the Freies Museum in Berlin and will have her first solo exhibition in NYC in November. Agathe de Bailliencourts drawings, paintings and installations have been exhibited at various international art fairs like Show Off Fiac in Paris, Scope Miami, Tokyo Art Fair, Art Osaka Fair, Art Taipei, Contemporary Istanbul, Art Singapore and Art-Athina International Art Fair in Greece.

Alex Bierk
Alex works by transposing photographic portraits onto canvas stretched over panel board using a monochromatic palette of oil paint. Painting cell by cell in a slow, methodical and meticulous manner taking weeks, if not months, to complete, the artist carefully reproduces photographs of people he knows and some he doesn’t. The works are not mere throwbacks to photo-realism as they might appear on first glance, however. The more you examine the paintings, the less it appears to be a truthful replica of a photo. Textures on the face, for example, appear so overly detailed that they come across as psychedelic or even supernatural, taking on a quality that is unlike skin. Rather than being a mere portrait, the effect of the process through which Bierk delivers each image is something unique and personal that speaks not only of the character of the persons depicted but the character of the artist himself. Alex neither hides the process nor the cells which comprise the painting; rather, his method is always made apparent as it is integral to his practice. This regimented technique was taught to Alex by his father, the late painter David Bierk.

Nicole Collins
Nicole Collins is a Toronto-based artist whose recent work has explored processes and systems, including the construction and dismantling and reassembly of painting. She recently completed a Master of Visual Studies degree at the University of Toronto (2009). Her work has been exhibited at both public and commercial galleries in Canada, USA, UK, Switzerland, Australia and Japan. Collins is an Instructor in the Department of Drawing and Painting at the Ontario College of Art & Design. Nicole Collins paintings have been featured in various publications such as Abstract Painting in Canada, House and Home and Carte Blanche 2: Painting.

Joe Fleming
Canadian artist Joe Fleming has been exhibiting locally and internationally for over 15 years and is represented by Newzones Gallery in Calgary, Elissa Cristall in Vancouver and Gallery TAKSU in Singapore. His painterly process involves aggressively distressing surfaces (wood panel and plexi glass mostly) then rebuilding them with flat graphic devices and brightly coloured enamel hues. Fleming's work is included in many corporate and public collections including: Trimark Mutual Funds, Honeywell Bull, American Barrick, Pricewaterhouse Coopers (Malaysia), HSBC Bank, Choo Mei Lin Cathay Organization Singapore, Australian High Commission, Canadian High Commission (Kuala Lumpur), the Edmonton Art Gallery, the Museum of Civilization (Hull, Quebec) and the Holocaust Museum (LA). In 2009 Fleming's work was included in Carte Blanche 2: Painting – a survey of new Canadian painting. In Jan. 2011 Fleming will be participating in Artstage Singapore, a new project of Lorenzo Rudolph (director of Basel/Miami Art Fair) as well as the launch of the spectacular W Hotel in Bali, courtesy of Gallery Taksu, Singapore.

Sasha Pierce
Toronto artist Sasha Pierce has exhibited her work in galleries and art fairs in Canada and the United States, including: ACME. in Los Angeles, CTRL Gallery in Houston, the Musée D’Art Contemporain de Montréal, the Power Plant in Toronto, the New Art Dealers Alliance Fair in Miami and NEXT Art Fair in Chicago. In 2009 Pierce was awarded Honourable Mention in the 11th RBC Canadian Painting Competition. Her work can be found in private and public collections, including: the Donovan Collection at the University of Toronto, RBC and the Bank of Montreal. Pierce is a graduate of the M.F.A. program at the University of Waterloo and received a B.A. in Studio Art from the University of Guelph.