The first Luminato festival of contemporary and classical music, dance, film, theatre and art draws to a close on June 10, so make sure to catch the giant public installations in Floating Artworks. In Max Streicher 's Quadriga, inflatable horses gallop overhead in the Great Hall of Union Station, while French sculptor Xavier Veilhan 's series of giant suspended spheres, entitled Le Grand Mobile, hangs at BCE Place. An interactive work by choreographer-turned-installation-artist William Forsythe , Scattered Crowd, is at the Toronto Dominion Centre. www.luminato.com.
How do you portray the full range of your innermost feelings without embarrassing everyone involved? While there are no guarantees that you'll steer clear of clichés or maudlin excess when venting your innermost rage and pain, the Power Plant's Auto Emotion: Autobiography, Emotion And Self-Fashioning asks a stellar lineup of artists to try. Leading and emerging contemporary artists, including Marina Abramovic , Reza Afisina , Eija-Liisa Ahtila and many others probe the possibilities of authentic catharsis in art. Most anticipated is the work of France's 2007 Venice Biennale representative, Sophie Calle , the only artist ever to sleep in a bed at the top of the Eiffel Tower. To August 19, Power Plant Contemporary Art Centre (231 Queens Quay West, 416-973-4949).
Alsop makes a splash
Will Alsop has risen to prominence as the radical visionary British architect behind the Grand Bleu building in Marseilles, the Sharp Centre for Design (on its multicoloured stilts above OCAD) and the bold west-side loft tower slated for construction in the Queen West triangle. He is also a painter whose mixed-media work directly shapes and informs his architectural vision. Looking at the way he playfully balances amorphous shapes, household objects and splashes of colour, you understand what he means when he says, "I've never seen an ugly blob." June 7 to July 28, Olga Korper Gallery (17 Morrow, 416-538-8220).
Taking a flyer
Cathy Busby pursues her long-standing interest in grassroots communication and posters with The North End, her collection of found flyers. In 2006, Busby collected every flyer she found stuck to a telephone pole in Halifax's North End. The collection includes the usual gig posters along with ads for sidewalk sales, snake oil pitches, political rallies and lost pets. The sheer range and diversity of styles, selected and arranged by Busby's witty curatorial eye, provide an unfiltered and often hilarious overview of urban culture, taken right off the street. August 18 to September 8, Art Metropole (788 King West, 416-703-4400).
Chuck Close 's large, uncomfortably detailed portraits are exact painterly analogues of photographic reproduction, completed by hand on the basis of grids. His uncanny skill has made him one of the most internationally respected artists of the last 20 years. New York's Aperture Foundation brings 44 of his large portraits to the AGO. Working from a series of daguerreotypes, he focuses on his circle of friends, including Cindy Sherman, Philip Glass, Lorna Simpson and James Turrell. Even more labour-intensive are his digital prints, some of which take upwards of two years to complete. They're accompanied by poems by none other than NYC spoken word legend Bob Holman, founder of Mouth Almighty Records. June 23 to September 16, AGO (317 Dundas West, 416-979- 6648).
Everything you revere, object to, admire, ridicule, emulate, dispute, disapprove of or scratch your head over in the Toronto art world is the focus of Love/Hate: New Crowned Glory In The GTA, a tossed salad of 40 local artists that aims to reflect the multi-faceted, paradoxical and hard-to-fathom diversity of the local scene. Favourite heroes and villains include Istvan Kantor , Jason Gringler , Bruce LaBruce , Fiona Smyth , Nick & Shiela Pye , Ulysses Castellanos , Harold Klunder and Fastwürms . The gallery actively promotes the viewing of art as an "engaged recreational activity." A pool table, a foosball table and stationary bikes will be available to enhance your experience. June 21 to August 19, MOCCA (952 Queen West, 416 395-0067).
The Tree Museum celebrates its 10th anniversary as one of North America's most unique outdoor art spaces and wildlife sanctuaries. On the 80-hectare site, you can enjoy both a pleasant walk in the country and works by an impressive international roster of artists. This year's installations include site-responsive explorations by Michael Belmore , meditative architectonic structures by Taiwan's Wen-Chih Wang and wood and metal mashups by Hong Kong's Jaffa Laam Lam . In July, Persona Volare , a collective of 12 Toronto artists, stages a series of sculptural interventions based on the very Zen notion of leaving no trace. July through September (Doe Lake Road, Muskoka, www.thetreemuseum.ca).