HI-LIGHT at Edward Day Gallery (952 Queen West) to September 4. 416-921-6540. Rating: NNN Rating: NNN
This weekend is your last chance to see the solid group show Hi-Light.
Curator Kelly McCray has assembled some remarkable photographers, painters and installation artists. Unfortunately, the organizing idea, work that turns on the ethereal quality of light, feels loose. Without cautious precision, this theme could be applied to a PowerPoint presentation.
A few bright bulbs really stand out.
The "best use of expired Polaroid film" award goes to Joshua Jensen-Nagle , who shoots barren scenes of nature or the odd splash of city. His large .75-by-1-metre digital prints, encased in a thick layer of clear resin, look at once like old photographs and oddly luminous paintings. Damage to the film results in soft-focus images and strips of orange highlights, adding to the overall feel of a time forgotten.
Rivalling the aesthetic splendour of Jensen-Nagle's prints are those of Jesse Boles . The talented photographer, not an OCAD student as we previously reported, continues his Crude Landscapes series. In long exposures of Ontario's industrial waterfronts by night, the big lights of heavy industry gleam across the water with a tranquil beauty. Two extraordinary prints, #104 and #105, shot in Hamilton, capture great arcs of misty, windswept pollution.
Melissa Doherty 's unobtrusive works delightfully surprise. Expertly painted in oil on board, three of her pieces reveal flat map-like details of grey highways and empty pockets of white land. She fills one pocket in each painting with blurry-edged renderings of trees and grass, making it seem as if you're peering through a magnifying glass.
In the slightly larger Cedars And Pines, the same delicate blur is used to paint a copse of trees in a lush field from a more angled perspective. No roads here. The tiny lush meadow and shady trees offer a glimpse of an immaculate, miniature natural world.