Thoughtful questions abound during a three-night-only exhibition featuring incredible oils by a Toronto-based painter. It’s centered on themes of farming and labor — but will you discover an opportunity for personal growth?
#Hashtag Gallery in Toronto, Canada, will be presenting several breathtaking oils by local painter Steve Chmilar this week. On view only from June 23 through June 25, “The Wrong Century” is a brilliant journey into Chmilar’s childhood as a staunch farmhand and seeks to encourage a number of thoughtful questions.
As the gallery writes, “Is this the wrong time period to produce this kind of art? Does labour in itself make an object more valuable? What knowledge should we keep from the past while moving into the Future? Each stunningly ambitious painting begins with dozens of sketches, followed by the careful construction of small-scale scenes made from wood, paper, clay and miscellaneous detritus. Chmilar then photographs the tiny set, like a high-budget film studio in miniature, to use as a reference for the painting, before redrawing the composition from scratch onto a wood panel and painting over it.
“Chmilar’s paintings are the result of an earnest practice and unbound invention. His work is inspired by the brushwork and detail of 18th-Century European paintings and brings characters to life who are locked in a unique bizarre struggle. Sometimes absurd and intentionally out of fashion, he uses earth-tone pigments to bring new light to the antiquated look of tattered edges and unflattering forms. The human figure acts as a vehicle to portray self-imposed hardship, human folly, self-awareness and personal growth.”
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