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Laying out the south gallery
works in the Toronto studio.
The painter was represented at the opening festivities by his grandson. An artist in his own right whose work has been described as unschooled yet deeply spiritual, Aidan Bloore does not presume to speak for his scholarly forebear. One wonders if Bloore the Elder's famous reticence regarding his themes is hereditary. But on this topic (and others), with what may be intentional irony, the six month old Aidan is not speaking.
This is a wise policy as there are more letters after his granddad's name than he even knows the names of, and his gurglings are at least as abstract as his elders' works on paper.
Still, they rate well above most gurglings of artists and art commentators many months his senior, particularly when facing his predecessor's sometimes monumental panels.
Decidedly outside any school of painting of our day the paintings are experienced as "curiously eternal," "Modern but ancient," "Romantic but spare," "white yet colourful." Many nifty things and many other opposite-sounding, equally nifty things. Pick your paradox, untie the painter, and paddle away.
For example: His paint never looks applied. It's just somehow there. We can ponder how, but we can only wonder why. And Bloore will tell you how he gets his effects (he loves painting) but he can't say why. So he doesn't title the works: "Why limit your imagination?"
Looking for clues among the old art historian's non-western first loves: ancient Chinese Bronzes, Egyptian wall paintings, Sub-Saharan sculptures, Byzantine mosaics, Japanese screens: we see the triumph of content, as we do in his western loves, Cimabue and Miro.
I think Aidan might agree. After gurgling this out for our web site press release, all I can say is his grandpa did not disagree.
26 works, some from local collections, some from Toronto, occupied both spaces at the Meridian, the sunny south and spare north, for six weeks.