john massey at Olga Korper Gallery (17 Morrow) to January 9. 416-538-8220. Rating: NNNN
having seen some of john mas-sey's latest work last summer, I know that Soldiers is something the winner of the 2001 Gershon Iskowitz Award was working on, and perfecting, long before September 11.Still, the subject matter of these manipulated photos -- antique toy soldiers seamlessly digitized at "life size" into landscape images -- has proved prescient. Particularly since the juxtaposition of, for example, Napoleonic figures in a southern Ontario setting brings home the message that war can always be here and now.
Being so timely can present complications. The underlying humour in works like Royal Scott In The Billiard Room, a kilt-clad officer shown in the over-the-top 19th-century period interior of Spadina House, takes on a different meaning given the current hawkish discourse following the World Trade Center bombings.
But the influential Massey certainly remains relevant.