ON A WHIM at Tatar Gallery (183 Bathurst), through September 10. 416-360-3822. Rating: NNN
On a Whim, the title of the Tatar Gallery's summer group show suggests impulsiveness, brevity and thoughtlessness. But these paintings, rich in layers and depth, were clearly no passing thought.
Each work represents a moment between states, a time of transition. Naturally, capturing these fleeting moments requires planning and forethought, and some of these works achieve this more effectively than others.
Michael Yoder's The Weight Of One, the most literal illustration of the show's theme, is also one of its strongest pieces. His colourful intentional strokes suggest an unidentifiable form on a hazy background. Once you gather that it's a truck, it either forms itself fully before your eyes or disappears, depending on how you look at it.
Yoder skilfully applied the colours by chipping away at the paint to expose layers underneath as well as adding new strokes. So the truck literally surfaces as it changes from an abstract to a figurative image.
The between-states moment is captured so clearly in Nam Nguyen 's paintings that he seems to have stopped time.
Wild, colourful, erratic brush strokes dance around the canvas in a flurry of activity suggesting the excitement of potential activity. It's the visual representation of an idea in formation, the state between conception and completion.