Kartz Ucci at Redhead Gallery (401 Richmond West), to September 28. 416-504-5654. Rating: NNNN
kartz ucci's exhibit is a sad display . She's outfitted the Redhead Gallery with a few essential "pad" items like the spare modern white chaise longue with marshmallow-roll pillow and a sleek sound system. It's all so Caban. But wait, it gets sadder. Ucci takes 368 songs with the word sad in their titles and mixes them together into one serious piece of garbled ambience. The music pours wistfully from the aforementioned stylish speakers, white noise reverberating off the white gallery walls. The music has been pressed onto vinyl, with the title wrapped around the circumference of the label. Trying to read it may cause extreme dizziness, so take care.
On the walls are two framed works consisting of black type on white paper. In one, sad slogans are arranged in a spiral, in the other a tight rectangle. Both exhibit the sort of look we've come to expect from smart designers. Capping the project is a short diatribe in vinyl applied directly to the wall that ends with the phrase "get the fuck off my driveway." See what owning all that stuff you cherish can do to you?
The Chile Exchange at A Space (401 Richmond West) to October 25. 416-979-9683. Rating: NNNN
the show across the hall at a Space is cluttered like a child's bedroom, clashing with Ucci's minimal stuff. This group show is part of The Chile Exchange, which, not surprisingly, involved Canadian artists going to Chile on exchange, creating art interventions with some Chilean artists and then coming back to display their output. This show is impressive in its sincerity. One of Toronto's finest artists, Sadko Hadzihasanovic , displays photos showing his wallpaper-based works placed over ripped poster remnants on faded walls in Santiago, the capital city. His drawings focus on children, as does a small image of a child drawn onto a wall in the gallery, which is an aged version of a poster of a missing Chilean child. This work is sad, without irony.
Quebec artist Frederic Laforge creates odd, sexual versions of such well-known figures as Santa Claus with a dangling penis and Pinocchio with his nose in someone else's bottom.
Chilean artist Ana María Wynecken steals the show with a grassy platform upon which a small adobe rhinoceros precariously grazes near the edge. It's a sharp reminder of how poorly we treat the world sometimes.
kelly Palmer at Pari Nadimi (80 Spadina) to September 27. 416-591-6464 . Rating: NNNN
kelly palmer's work at pari nadimi is fabulous. Bright orange banners curl through beautifully painted landscapes, marrying the abstract and the real in a very satisfying way. Palmer and art guy Gary Michael Dault will give a talk Saturday (September 20) at 2:30 pm.
Big new talent
Jakub Dolejs at Angell (890 Queen West) to October 11. 416-530-0444. Rating: NNNN
over at angell, the talented young Jakub Dolejs weds painting and photography. He paints elaborate backdrops and then photographs subjects, here unidentifiable historical figures, in front of them. The works are then printed large so the figures are nearly life-sized. It's theatrical, elegant and unlike anything else.
Here are shows to provide much-deserved candy for your brain as you gad about at Saturday's (September 20) Canadian Art Foundation Gallery Hop. Too bad the Gallery Hop map is so poor. Like something from Dungeons And Dragons, it offers dead ends and pitfalls such as the recently shuttered SPIN and vacated Virus Arts. More info at www.canadianart. ca or 416-368-8854 ext 395.