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THE NEXT 7 DAYS:     EVENTS (17)     +     OPENINGS (3)     +     DEADLINES (12)     +     CLOSINGS (6)
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Join us on Friday, June 1, 7 – 10PM, to celebrate the opening of the Varley Art Gallery of Markham’s Summer Exhibitions!

The night will feature in-gallery performances, pop-up tours, a cash bar, refreshments, and more!

The Varley Art Gallery of Markham is an accessible venue.

Jessica Karuhanga, being who you are there is no other (video still), 2017, Two-channel video installation. Courtesy of the Artist.

May 19 – September 3, 2018

Karen Miranda Abel, Lisa Hirmer, Jessica Karuhanga, Anna Williams
Curated by Anik Glaude

A woman’s hand weaves in and out of the tall grasses growing along a riverbed. The clap of a beaver’s tail thunders upon the water’s surface, the sound reverberating into the distance. Nearby, concentric circles appear as particles of matter disturb the river’s otherwise calm body. The roots of mother trees extend on either side of the stream nurturing the next generation of saplings.

Inspired by the gallery’s location near Toogood Pond and the Rouge River watershed, Refuge dwells upon issues of boundaries, permanence, interconnectivity and exchange. It explores the physical and psychological effects of nature for humans and animals alike, specifically within the context of the urban forest.

About the artists

Karen Miranda Abel is a Canadian interdisciplinary artist based in Toronto. Abel’s durational field studies and site-sensitive elemental installations approach art as environment and process. She holds an interdisciplinary Master in Environmental Studies from York University in Fine Art, Cultural Production and Environmental Art Practice. Abel recently realized her first international solo exhibition at the Blue Mountains City Art Gallery in Australia. She has completed artist residences in Canada, Spain and the USA and her work is held in Canadian public art collections.

Jessica Karuhanga is an artist working through video, drawing and movement. She has presented her work at Goldsmiths, London (2016), Art Gallery of Ontario, Toronto (2016), the Art Museum at University of Toronto (2017) and Onsite Gallery at OCAD University, Toronto (2018). She has given lectures for The Power Plant Contemporary Art Gallery, Royal Ontario Museum as well as Harvard University and Tisch School of the Arts at NYU’s Black Portraitures Series. Her writing has been published by BlackFlash Magazine and C Magazine. She has been featured in esse, C Magazine and Canadian Art. She earned her BFA from Western University and her MFA from University of Victoria. She lives and works in Toronto, Canada.

Lisa Hirmer is an interdisciplinary artist whose work spans visual media, social practice and experimental forms of research. She is primarily concerned with collective relationships, in communities and public spaces as well as within more-than-human ecologies. She has shown her work across Canada and internationally including exhibitions/projects at Flux Factory (USA), CAFKA (Kitchener-Waterloo), KIAC (Dawson City), Third Space (Saint John) and the Art Gallery of Ontario. She is a graduate of the University of Waterloo and is currently based in Guelph, Canada.

Anna Williams was born in Ottawa, ON. After studying sculpture and printmaking at Mount Allison University, she returned to Ottawa where she continues to live and work. Her artwork employs the animal and narrative to examine the construction and manipulation of ecology, female identity and power relationships in contemporary society. Her work has been shown in Canada and the U.S., and collected by both public institutions and private collectors, among them the Canada Council Art Bank. She is currently completing a large installation piece funded by the inaugural Fluevog Artist Grant.

Anna Williams, Canada House, 2016-17, sculpture (bronze, resin, lighting) and audio. Courtesy of the artist.

Also on view

January 20 – September 3, 2018

Featuring works from the Varley Art Gallery of Markham’s permanent collection, Inscapes explores the landscape genre and considers the relationship between it and the natural world it depicts.

This exhibition focuses on representations of the places we inhabit, whether they be physical or imagined. Seascapes, snowscapes, cityscapes, and even mindscapes, are generic terms used to describe the types of environments represented within an artwork. An “inscape,” on the other hand, is defined as the essential quality of a particular human being, object or location. In order to highlight such qualities among the works on display, writers Pushpa Acharya, Tina Zafreen Alam, Whitney French, Laboni Islam, Sheniz Janmohamed and Hyacinthe Miller have been invited to produce original texts in response to them.

Public Programs:

Performance, Tree-Planting & Community Lunch
May. 27 | 1:00 p.m. | FREE with registration
Artist Lisa Hirmer invites you to a community meal and performance. Participants will tour the Varley’s current exhibitions, and then work together to plant indigenous trees near the gallery.

Summer Exhibitions Opening Night
Jun. 1 | 7:00 – 10:00 p.m. | FREE
Join us to celebrate the launch of our summer exhibitions.
RSVP today at

Toogood Walk and Talk with TRCA
Jun. 7, 2018 | Aug. 26, 2018 | 1:30 – 2:30 p.m. | Free with registration
Join the Toronto and Region Conservation Authority for a guided walk through Toogood Pond to learn about the natural and human history of the Rouge River watershed.

PechaKucha Markham Vol. 19
Jun. 8 | 7:30 p.m. | Pay What You Want
Connect with Markham’s creative communities! Presenters share their ideas in 20 slides x 20 seconds each.

Water Works – Family Workshop
Jun. 24 | 1:00 – 4:00 p.m. | FREE registration required | 325563
Bring your family to the Varley and explore how water works in nature and in art.

Mon. | Closed, (Jul. 1 – Aug. 31, 11AM – 4PM)
Tue., Wed., Fri., Sun. | 11AM – 4PM
Thurs. | 11AM – 8PM
Sat. | 10AM – 5PM


Media Contact
Carolyn Douse | 905-477-7000 ext. 3275 |
@VarleyArtGallery | |
216 Main Street Unionville, Markham L3R 2H1 | 905-477-7000 ext. 3261






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