Animal Throw

Animal Throw
Installation by Parker Branch
Flea Market Gallery
Animal Throw is on display every Sunday from 27 Oct – 12 Jan

Parker Branch is a collaborative curatorial project by artists Anna Madelska and Jason Hallows that occupies a small storefront space in London, Ontario. The project explores the lateral diversions of meaning that become possible between art, found objects, and natural artifacts.

The Parker Branch project for the NAC Flea Market Gallery draws from the visual culture of the flea market and the display strategies of the vendors’ stalls.  In the installation, printed fleece blankets suggest a nighttime visit from a pack of wolves to a forested corner of the market. Coloured tarps form a rudimentary backdrop, while also transitioning from the DIY walls of the surrounding spaces. The movement of the pack echoes the movement of the objects circulating within the market – a multiplicity, in the Deleuzoguattarian sense, gathered together and organized according to dozens of haphazard logics. Each stall is a multiplicity. The market is a multiplicity of multiplicities (wild things) that functions as a peripheral economy at the edge of the green corridor (where the wild gets in), and at the edge of the economic landscape. Tent city. Wild kingdom.


Recent Paintings by David Elliott
On display from 5 October – 21 December
Opening Reception Saturday 5 October at 2pm

The ideal act of love is to contain all.
– John Berger

Artists take the stuff of the world and rearrange it to create a parallel universe. In a way, the creative process is as simple as that & as complicated. What is important is the dimension of that newly created universe. I don’t mean the actual height or width of a painting (although it is a factor) but rather the quality of cosmic space that has been created. Where do we travel to, emotionally or spiritually, when we are transported by a work of art? I would say everywhere at once and nowhere at all. A place that remains essentially mysterious, while at the same time seeming to hold all our imagined truths.

For over thirty years I have used collage as a way of sifting through the world and rearranging it. Recently I have been assembling these collages in small foam-core boxes, arranging printed paper and cardboard elements in a stage-like fashion. These maquettes are then photographed under various lighting conditions, and the resulting image transferred to canvas in paint. There is a heightened degree of illusionism in these new paintings with the shallow perspective of the box & the cast shadows rendered as meticulously as possible. There is also a playfulness involving scale & the verisimilitude of the trompe l’oeil technique & the obvious artificiality of the project. For instance, I enjoy rendering the rough edges of the cut paper so that the sophisticated realism of a painted element is immediately seen in the context of a small scrap of paper casually pasted onto a piece of cardboard. The paintings are therefore both convincingly real & obviously a sham.

I come from a world of plenty. Mom grew up on a farm in Niagara-on-the-Lake & even though Dad couldn’t tell a daisy from a petunia, somehow some of that farm culture always seemed present in our lives. We knew the seasons for various fruit & vegetables. We used to help Mom make preserves. I remember the look & the smell of pears studded with cloves in Mason jars. There was only one painting in our house, a picture of St. Andrews Presbyterian Church that my Mom did as a girl. There were also stenciled fruit & flora on some of our antique furniture, as well as small embroideries with maxims about friendship, kindness & gardens. At Grandpa Cooper’s farm there was an old weathered picture of fruit, framed & under glass that hung in the kitchen. I guess I’ve always liked the tradition of still life painting as a microcosm of the world, from Dutch vanitas to James Rosenquist’s Pop mash-ups. In the way they are conceived & assembled, all my paintings are in some ways still life arrangements. I try to maintain the individual, sacred ‘isness’ or ‘itness’ of things much like an elementary school primer or an encyclopedia. This is in some ways easy since each element is indeed cut from a separate piece of paper. The cat is a cat, the apple is an apple, a clock is a clock, almost comically so. Then like a cabinet of curiosities or a horn of plenty, they are put in concert with each other, sometimes on tabletops like a conventional still life, sometimes like interlocking jigsaw puzzle pieces, sometimes with the elements simply lined up like toy soldiers or books on a mantelpiece.   Hopefully the interplay between elements creates a level of revelation & magic.

It’s been 40 years since I last showed in Niagara. My first exhibition was right here in St. Catharines at Rodman Hall’s Annual Ontario Jury show in 1972. I presented a picture called Dad’s Sweater of my father eating an ice cream cone. His favorite flavor was Maple Walnut. This show is dedicated to him with love.

 – From the Artist’s Statement


Jesse Frank Matthews
Opening Reception Wednesday 24 July 9pm

‘night after night
I chase you down,
night after night
you disappear’

-The Egyptian Lover

The term pheromone, a chemical compound of numerous forms, is derived from two Greek words; pherein (to transport) and hormone (to stimulate). Influenced by the ways that sexual pheromones have been used to  ‘trap’  other species in the insect world. Within this understanding of attraction, the pheromone is simply understood as a chemical compound emitted by the female species to indicate their breeding availability to males, secreting an odour letting others know exactly where to find them.

Humans have manipulated this ancient essence to disrupt mating and control pests, by extracting the powerful pheromones secreted by the female species and consolidating the essence with adhesive, then placed as bait inside an empty cage. As the scent attracts the male(s) they become trapped on the unforgiving sticky surface, laced in subliminal seduction and brought to their demise by deceptive hopes of a potential mate. Cruel, but necessary to some, this scheme has long helped scientists and night club owners to understand the language of love.

Cardboard City

On display from 23 June – 22 September
Reception Sunday 15 September 1pm

The Niagara Artists Centre continues its series of exhibitions in the Flea Market Gallery with a show by Niagara Falls collective, Brainkite Co. The installation consists of over eighty-five cardboard buildings, including typical architectural landmarks found in most city centres such as fire halls, libraries, and apartment buildings. Cardboard Cities was made possible through the efforts of twenty-four volunteers who have spent 500 hours over the last two years to create a model metropolis. The city’s stop at NAC’s Flea Market Gallery won’t curtail this miniature urban sprawl. More buildings are being constructed all the time­–including at the exhibit’s closing reception on Sunday 15 September. Plans to have Cardboard Cities tour Ontario as parade float are in the works for 2014.

NAC has been presenting work in the Flea Market Gallery since October 2010. “We make no assumptions about where contemporary art can be found and who it is for,” says NAC’s Minister of Energy, Minds and Resources, Stephen Remus, “NAC works to make the ideas being shared through visual art available, even where you least expect”.

Brainkite Co.
Brainkite Co. Artistic Solutions is a collection of artists that pride themselves on their motivation to create unique pieces. They’ve proudly executed over 1750 pieces of art for clients and have been written about in 30+ various publications.

How to Read

derek beaulieu
Opening Reception: Friday 22 March, 7-11 pm
Licensed Event

The evening will include:

– Readings by derek beaulieu, Sharon Harris, Jenny Sampirisi, and Karl Jirgens
– Launch of The Last Vispo Anthlogy, 1998-2008
– Launch of Please, no more poetry: the selected works of derek beaulieu by derek beaulieu (ed. Kit Dobson)

A self-described “linguistic architect,” derek beaulieu’s engagements have often recycled and reclaimed literary detritus with which he has built a complex of unimagined lettristic constructions. As though he is issuing a direct response to Brion Gysin’s oft-cited dictum “poetry is fifty years behind painting,” beaulieu’s HOW TO READ bridges that disciplinary gap. In a show where the conceptual and the visual coalesce, HOW TO READ moves beaulieu’s work from the book and from the journal and into the gallery where he explores the materiality of the page and the letter. Acknowledging that the information age has changed the way we navigate the word, HOW TO READ shows us how our cut, copy, and paste culture has transformed reading praxis. Exhibiting seldom seen work like “The Newspaper” and never before seen pieces like “The Alphabet,” this is beaulieu’s first major solo exhibit.

About The Last Vispo Anthology, 1998-2008…
The Last Vispo Anthology is composed of vispo (a portmanteau of the words “visual” and “poetry”) from the years 1998 to 2008, during a burst of creative activity fueled by file sharing and email, which made it possible for the vispo community to establish a more heightened and sophisticated dialogue with one another. The collection extends the dialectic between art and literature that began with ancient “shaped text,” medieval pattern poetry, and dada typography, pushing past the concrete poetics of the 1950s and the subsequent mail art movement of the 1980s to its current incarnation. Rather than settle into predictable, unchallenged patterns, this vibrant poetry seizes new tools to expand the body of work that inhabits the borderlands of visual art and poetic language.

The Last Vispo Anthology features 148 contributors from 23 countries on five continents. It includes 12 essays that illuminate the abundant history and the state of vispo today. The anthology offers a broad amalgam of long-time practitioners and poets new to visual poetry over the last decade, underscoring the longevity and the continued vitality of the art form.

About Please, no more poetry: the selected works of derek beaulieu…
Since the beginning of his poetic career in the 1990s, derek beaulieu has created works that have challenged readers to understand in new ways the possibilities of poetry. With nine books currently to his credit, and many works appearing in chapbooks, broadsides, and magazines, beaulieu continues to push experimental poetry, both in Canada and internationally, in new directions. Please, No More Poetry is the first selected works of derek beaulieu.

As the publisher of first housepress and, more recently, No Press, beaulieu has continually highlighted the possibilities for experimental work in a variety of writing communities. His own work can be classified as visual poetry, as concrete poetry, as conceptual work, and beyond. His work is not to be read in any traditional sense, as it challenges the very idea of reading; rather, it may be understood as a practice that forces readers to reconsider what they think they know. As beaulieu continues to push himself in new directions, readers will appreciate the work that he has created to date, much of which has become unavailable in Canada.

With an introduction by Kit Dobson and an interview with derek beaulieu by Lori Emerson as an afterword, Please, no more poetry: the selected works of derek beaulieu offers readers an opportunity to gain access to a complex experimental poetic practice through thirty-five selected representative works.

For more information contact,
Natasha Pedros
Minister of Communications & Inland Revenue
Niagara Artists Centre

Eric Schmaltz
Board of Directors
Niagara Artists Centre
Grey Borders Reading Series

The Grey Borders Reading Series gratefully acknowledges the financial support of The Canada Council for the Arts and Brock University’s Canadian Studies program.


Video Pirate Transmissions
Every Sunday until 10 March 2013
Flea Market Gallery

NWODTLEM is the brainchild of Toronto artist Sean Marven, who wields cut-up multimedia snippets into a bedazzling stream of audio-visual hijinx.

Playful rhythms and over the top laughsanity ensues when B-Movies, celebrity culture and more are thrown into the blender, and chopped into entertaining new monsterpieces. Of Marven’s work, Exclaim Magazine raved “True to sample culture, this is micro-cinema meets post-rave “mashdown” and the results are sensory overload detritus that begs to be played on a larger screen with the volume up all the way.”

Inane Asylum – DVD (artwork on 110 piece puzzle) – 2012
Chopping Spree – DVD – 2010
Video piR8 – 2008
Performed A/V sets in:
Dublin, London, Brighton, Bristol, Montreal, Ottawa, Detroit, St Catharines, New York, Brighton, as well as the legendary Videodrome events and many other events in Toronto.
Co-founded dropFRAME (A/V label) with Pete OHearn
Co-organizer, co-curator of Videodrome
“Through the miracles of video destruction and musical re-assemblance Nwodtlem has created a DVD that even the most jaded of nerds will find it hard to not get hard from.”

Steve Whore Church