Toronto Outdoor Art Exhibition 

2017-05-23 09.43.10

Le texte français suivra


This weekend, I will be participating in the 2017 Toronto Outdoor Art Exhibition (TOAE).  The weather is forecast to be in the mid twenties and mostly sunny, so it’s a great weekend to show art and see art. This is my third participation in the TOAE.  You can find me in booth P-086.

The exhibition will be held at Nathan Phillips Square, just in front of Toronto City Hall on Friday, July 14 (10:00 to 7:00), Saturday, July 15 (10:00 to 7:00) and Sunday, July 16 (10:00 to 5:00).

“The Toronto Outdoor Art Exhibition is Canada’s largest, longest running juried contemporary outdoor art fair. Founded in 1961, Toronto Outdoor Art Exhibition was established to nurture artistic excellence and artists’ entrepreneurial spirit, and to showcase contemporary art to the general public. This free public event showcases works by over 320 contemporary visual artists and makers, ranging in medium from painting, photography, and mixed media to jewellery and ceramics, and attracts 100,000 visitors each year to Nathan Phillips Square.”



Ce week-end, je participerai à l’exposition Toronto Outdoor Art Exposition (TOAE). On nous annonce du beau temps – température dans la vingtaine, et généralement ensoleillé – donc c’est un excellent week-end pour présenter de l’art et voir de l’art. C’est ma troisième année dans cette exposition. Je serai au kiosque P-086.

L’exposition se tiendra à la place Nathan Phillips, juste devant l’hôtel de ville de Toronto le vendredi 14 juillet (10h00 à 19h00), le samedi 15 juillet (10h00 à 19h00) et le dimanche 16 juillet (10:00 à 17:00).

L’exposition d’art de plein air de Toronto (Toronto Outdoor Art Exhibition) est la plus grande et la plus longue exposition d’art de plein air contemporaine au Canada. Fondée en 1961, l’exposition Toronto Outdoor Art Exhibition a été créée pour favoriser l’excellence artistique et l’esprit d’entreprise des artistes et pour présenter l’art contemporain au grand public. L’événement public présente des œuvres de plus de 320 artistes et créateurs visuels contemporains, allant de la peinture, à la photographie et des médias mixtes aux bijoux et à la céramique, et attirent 100 000 visiteurs chaque année sur la place Nathan Phillips.

Painting the Night

Black and white.  The colours of the night.  Artists have long portrayed the night in music, in poetry, in film, in painting.  The night hides mysteries that cannot be fully told, that cannot be fully understood.  I’ve had a special relationship with my paintings where colour creates the illusion of black and grey and white.  This new work, Black and White No. 20 removes all colour, becomes more opaque, impenetrable.  Like the night.  Like a cold night.

Black and White No 20

Black and White No. 20.  Oil painting on canvas.  36″ x 30″ (91 cm x 76 cm).  Original painting by Jacques Descoteaux

Painting the Night

I love the night, when the world falls asleep and the shadows come to life, with their mysteries and their surprises.  The unknown lurks behind a tree or beyond a corner.  The night can be a time of quiet meditation. For some, it can also be a frightful time.  The night has inspired many musicians and painters and novelists and poets.

In music, a Nocturne is a short piece that evokes the night.  Nocturnes tend to be quiet, often played on a single instrument.  Chopin’s nocturnes may be the best known today, but Irish pianist and composer John Field is considered to be the originator of the nocturne.

In painting, the term Nocturne was used by American artist James Whistler to describe some of his night paintings, though he was of course not the first to paint night scenes.   Nocturnes are night scenes, but they’ve also been described as gloomy, moody, atmospheric.  In 2004, the Art Gallery of Ontario held a beautiful exhibition of the works of Turner, Whistler and Monet: Impressionist Visions. The exhibition was also shown at the Tate Britain in London and at the Musée d’Orsay in Paris.  What really struck me in this exhibition was how these three wonderful artists created stunning nocturnes.

Over the years, I’ve painted a number of pieces that were inspired by the night. Here are a few recent ones.



Photo courtesy of Sam Domski
Nocturne in Blue, Oil on canvas. 18″ x 24″ (45 cm x 60 cm). 2013 (ref 12-12-2013)

Nocturnes in art means art inspired by night.  Originally referring to music, American painter James Whistler is said to have first used the term “nocturne” to describe his night paintings.  I had become familiar wit the works of Whistler over the years, but I really discovered Whistler’s nocturnes in an exhibition of the works of Turner, Whistler and Monet.  The exhibition traveled from Toronto to Paris to London in 2004-05.

Seeing the art of these three masters in one massive exhibition was fabulous, but Whistler’s nocturnes made a lasting impression.

Over the years I painted a number of night landscapes.  This is one of my recent nocturnes.