About Our Artist Instructors
- Kelley Aitken
- Aleks Bartosik
- Yulia Braun
- Lynn Crosbie
- Grace Dubery
- Janieta Eyre
- Sarah Febbraro
- Claire Greenshaw
- Jim Hake
- Brian Hoxha
- Brendan Jensen
- Kerry Kim
- Bogdan Luca
- Carol Matson
- Brian Piitz
- Jamie Q
- Lauren McKinley Renzetti
- Fiona Smyth
- Sharon Switzer
- Michael Toke
- Alan Webb
- Amy Wong
Through the 80's and 90's my work was primarily narrative: dream landscapes and figurative works that used the geography of the body to map psychological and emotional states. These works were executed on canvas, wood, and paper in mixed media and painterly collage. I continue to work with figurative imagery at a larger scale in gouache, acrylic wash, ink, graphite, encaustic and papercut.
Kelley Aitken's teaching focus and specialty is drawing and mixed media.
Aleks Bartosik works figuratively and most often large-scale, where she combines drawing elements in painting, sculpture, performance and installation, and film/video. Bartosik's work explores the boundaries between the real and the imaginary often depicting the artist as the protagonist within invented narratives.
Aleks Bartosik's teaching focus and specialty is painting and drawing, especially figurative.
Yulia's yoga practice is designed to give you a healthy mind and flexible body. In her classes she focuses on Mindfulness, natural and functional movement, injury prevention and fun. Yulia is a Hatha yoga teacher, she received her teacher training in Toronto at the Esther Myers yoga studio where she was trained in a very student centered approach to yoga.
Lynn Crosbie is a Ph.D and novelist/poet, whose latest book is Where Did You Sleep Last Night (House of Anansi, 2015.) Her new collection of poems, The Corpses of the Future will appear, with Anansi, in 2017, nd has been excerpted, so far, in The Walrus, Numero Cinq, Matrix, Brick and elsewhere, She has taught creative writing at U of T, OCAD, Rutgers, Guelph and Workman Arts, and is a mentor at U of T's graduate program. She is an editor and award-winning journalist, who has written about sports, fashion, crime, pop culture, astrology and politics.
Lynn Crosbie's teaching focus and specialty is writing and poetry.
Grace's teaching draws from various yoga traditions. Using a non-dogmatic approach, she views the physical practice as a gateway, not an end in itself. Her Vinyasa Flow classes are creative, dynamic, attentive to technique and alignment, and always include variations suitable for all levels of experience. Grace believes that an individual’s journey inward must ultimately lead back outward, to engagement with the community, and that the teachings of yoga are not intended to be confined to the mat. This inspires her to deepen her commitment to development projects, both locally and abroad. For her, yoga is meant to expand greater stillness within the self. Her ultimate goal, in practice and in teaching, is to inhabit that space more frequently and more comfortably.
Janieta Eyre (b. 1966) studied philosophy at Toronto University, then magazine journalism at Ryerson Polytechnic University and photography at the Ontario College of Art and Design. She took up photography professionally in 1995. In her distinctive self-portraits, she frequently presents herself as a set of twins, engaging with the possibility of morphous identities and fictional doubles. Often employing fantastic and carnivalesque settings, she uses props and costumes to disrupt the fixity of image and identity. She manipulates the theatricality at play in her work by incorporating art-historical and literary references, while leaving space for the integration of fictional representations. Janieta's show Selected Poems at the Mulherin & Pollard Projects NYC launches November 8th.
Janieta Eyre's teaching focus and specialty is photography.
Sarah's art practice incorporates performance, video, documentary, installation, community engagement, social practice and drawing and aims to blur the boundaries between popular culture, community engagement, art education and contemporary art. She often creates and facilitates structured programs for children, teens, seniors and adults to participate in, such as talk shows, talent shows, dating shows, dance classes, cooking classes, walking tours, video portraiture and documentary style interviews; resulting in online and public video screenings, installations and performances. She received her MFA from the School of the Art Institute of Chicago in 2008 and has exhibited her work in festivals and galleries internationally including The Power Plant (Toronto), Mess Hall (Chicago), Art City (Winnipeg), Whitney Biennial (NYC), Disjecta Space (Portland), La Centrale (Montreal, QC), Skulpturenpark (Berlin, Germany), and Blackwood Gallery (Toronto, ON).
Claire Greenshaw received her BFA from the Nova Scotia College of Art and Design in Halifax, Canada in 2002 and her MFA from the Glasgow School of Art in 2009. Greenshaw has shown in many group exhibitions across Canada, in the UK, USA and Sweden, including shows at The Night Gallery, Los Angeles; The Khyber Arts Centre, Halifax; and The Royal Standard, Liverpool. Her solo exhibitions include Sweet Geranium, Glasgow; Hunter and Cook HQ, Toronto; and Helen Pitt Artist Run Centre, Vancouver. Claire Greenshaw is also co-editor/designer of Millions magazine.
Claire Greenshaw's teaching focus and specialty is sculpture and drawing.
Jim Hake received his BFA in sculpture at the Maryland Institute, College of Art in 1990, a MA in sculpture at California State University, Sacramento in 1994 and a MFA in sculpture at the Henry Radford Hope School of Fine Arts, Indiana University, Bloomington in 1996. After graduation, Hake moved to Turin, Italy and became an Italian citizen where he began his career as a professional sculptor and teacher. Before moving to Toronto in 2008, Jim Hake has shown his work extensively throughout Italy and Europe, in particular, Milan, Bologna, Venice, Lugano, Stockholm, and London. In the past 5 years, Hake has mounted 5 solo exhibitions throughout Ontario. He is currently represented by Lonsdale Gallery.
Jim Hake's teaching focus and specialty is sculpture.
Brian Hoxha is a painter, printmaker and educator whose work explores the natural world. Taking inspiration by painting on location in Ontario, and journeying to areas as diverse as Western Canada, Newfoundland and Montana, Hoxha works in both oil and watercolour. He also has a studio-based practice in which he translates painted works into etchings, lithographs, and woodcuts. Hoxha is currently being represented by Open Studio, Gallery 133, The Denison Gallery, Art Interiors, Tracey Capes F.A., Gallery Noveau in Regina, Saskatdhewan, Gibson Fine Arts in Calgary, and the Christina Parker Gallery in St. John's N.F. Brian Hoxha currently teaches Introduction to Printmaking.
Brian Hoxha's teaching focus and specialty is printmaking and painting.
Brendan's earliest yoga practice arose from an effort to find balance within the rigorous regimen of a dance vocation. His performance career has spanned over a decade - having graduated from the National Ballet School of Canada - during which time he has performed internationally with some of Canada's leading contemporary companies. Brendan strives to ensure his yoga and performance practice continue to inform each other. He completed his certified Moksha Yoga training in 2009 and has since developed a successful teaching practice across Canada. In 2011 he trained in Yin yoga with Tracey Soghrati (Soghrati Yoga) and in 2014, studied under Yoga Vini in Rishikesh, India; with further education in Asana, Philosophy, Pranayama and the Shat Kriyas. In 2015 he became a licensed Yoga Tune Up® teacher under the instruction of Jill Miller. Brendan spends the majority of his time teaching in Downtown Toronto. He has also co-led international retreats that offer intensive explorations in the practice of togetherness; operating from the belief that people thrive in community, where the individual can find personal definition in the transformative force of fellowship. Brendan is eager to learn and grow with anyone willing to enter the studio and share their practice. He offers an open mind and heart with a healthy dose of realism; exemplified in one of his late mothers favourite quotes:
“Keep an open mind, but not so open that your brains fall out."
Kerry Kim regards drawing as a vehicle for exploration of chaotic visual reality while he does not imbue his works with symbolism, nor does he merely record what he sees. Rather, he draws out the structural movement within the human form, thus conveying thoughts and emotions that otherwise could not be elucidated. Kerry graduated from Ontario College of Art and Design in 1981 and studied old master drawings in Florence, Italy. He taught drawing and painting at the Art Gallery of Ontario, Dundas Valley School of Art, Sheridan College, Centennial College and Ontario College of Art and Design. He is presently the director of Mississauga Valley School of Art. Kerry's works have been represented through many group and solo shows.
Kerry Kim's teaching focus and specialty is drawing and painting.
Bogdan was born in Romania and has been living in Toronto since 1994. After graduating from Sheridan College's Classical Animation program, he worked in the animation world in various roles including animator, designer, concept artist, storyboard artist and art director. Bogdan also studied at OCAD University and the University of Toronto. Since 2010 he works as a drawing and painting instructor in the Faculty of Art at OCAD University. Bogdan has exhibited his work in Canada, Italy, Romania, Germany and the US. He isrepresented by Neubacher Shor Contemporary Gallery in Toronto.
Bogdan Luca's teaching focus and specialty is painting and drawing.
Carol Matson was born in Vancouver, B.C. and attended the University of British Columbia, where she was granted a B.Ed. with a Double Art Major. After spending time in London, England, Carol completed an Honours Degree in Printmaking from the Emily Carr School of Art and Design, and at Concordia University in Montreal where she received a Masters in Art Education, with Studio Studies. Carol taught at Concordia in the Fine Arts Department before moving to Toronto. Her paintings are in collections in Canada and the United States.
Carol Matson's teaching focus and specialty is painting and drawing.
Brian Piitz lives and works in Toronto. He graduated from Ryerson Polytechnic in 1986. Since 1984, he has exhibited in solo and group shows nationally and internationally. His work was included in the touring exhibitions Persistent Documents (1995-2000), The Pressing of Flesh (1993-1995) and The Body-Le Corps (1993-1994). He was a founding member of the Blanket Artist Collective and the Phoebe Street Project. Piitz has been an instructor of photography since 1999 and presently he is a sessional instructor at York University.
Jamie Q makes paintings, drawings, zines, prints, sculptures, and textile pieces. They have shown their art and distributed their zines internationally, including notable group shows at Krets Gallery in Sweden and Museum London in Ontario, and as part of the National Queer Arts Festival in San Francisco. Jamie Q has presented solo exhibitions of their work at DNA Artspace in London, L'APPÂT in Brussels, Art Metropole in Toronto, and Parentheses Gallery & Art Projects in Halifax. The artist holds a BFA from the Alberta College of Art & Design (2002) and an MFA from Western University (2010). Their most recent projects work through ideas around arts economies and value, gender and queerness, craft and repurposed materials, and process-based play.
Lauren McKinley Renzetti
Lauren McKinley Renzetti is an artist, designer, educator, maker and writer who has shown her work throughout Ontario. Her role as an educator has taken her to Georgian College, McMaster University, Ryerson University, the Art Gallery of Hamilton and art Works art School as well as the AGO. Her work predominantly is texture based: relief printmaking,collage, paper making, mixed media sculpture and high relief detritus painting in acrylic. She is represented by ArtBomb and is also the artist–in-residence at Unicamp of Ontario where she facilitates large community building art projects. Her editorials on education, art and community building have been printed widely in e-newsletters, The Canadian Unitarian and in Snap. Lauren McKinley Renzetti's teaching focus and speciality is printmaking and mixed media.
Since graduating from OCADU in 1986, Fiona Smyth has covered Toronto and elsewhere with her distinctive female charged graphics. Her art practice includes painting, murals, animation, zines, comics, and illustration. Fiona's extensive exhibition history has included group shows at the Art Gallery of York University, the Art Gallery of Mississauga, and the Museum of Contemporary Canadian Art. Her art works have exhibited internationally in the USA, Mexico, Berlin, France, Venice, Taiwan, Korea, and Japan. Fiona teaches illustration and cartooning at OCADU.
A collection of Fiona's Exclaim comics Cheez 100 was published by Pedlar Press in 2001. Her first graphic novel The Never Weres was published by Annick Press in 2011. Fiona illustrated Cory Silverberg's Kickstarter funded picture book What Makes A Baby in 2012, re-released by Seven Stories Press in May 2013. The follow up book Sex Is A Funny Word will be released by summer 2015.
Sharon Switzer is a Toronto-based media artist and curator. She has, since the early 1990s, exhibited widely across Canada and in the U.S, as well as at international art fairs with Corkin Gallery. For the past 10 years, her curating has focused on bringing contemporary art to public spaces. She founded the not-for-profit curatorial organization Art for Commuters, and produced the Art in Transit program as well as the Toronto Urban Film Festival, offering artists an opportunity to show their work in the public spaces frequented by urban commuters. Switzer has an MFA from the University of Western Ontario, is a Graduate of the CFC Media Lab at the Canadian Film Centre. She is represented by Corkin Gallery, Toronto.
Michael Toke is a Toronto based visual / installation artist, born Hamilton 1964. Attending Sheridan College and OCA in the 1980s, moved to NYC and worked as head assistant to J.S.G. Boggs a commerce based performance artist. Exhibiting internationally in art and film venues. His installations combine painting, video and sculpture hung on a conceptual armature of documentary film practice.
Michael Toke's teaching focus and specialty is painting.
Amy Wong's paintings, drawings and sound work are a collection of diverse cultural references, oscillating between different systems of representation to evoke non-linear, personal narratives. Both tongue-in-cheek and unabashedly sincere, Wong works with what she considers a bad idea or a cliché in order to redefine them on her own terms.
Amy Wong (b. 1981, Toronto) has lived and worked in Toronto, Montreal, Amsterdam, Xiamen, Brooklyn, Barcelona and Miami. She completed her BFA at Concordia University in Montreal, Quebec, MFA at York University in Toronto, Ontario, and post-graduate studies at De Ateliers in Amsterdam, the Netherlands.
Alan Webb is an artist and architect who has lived and worked in Montreal, New York, Brno, Rome and Helsinki. He currently resides in Toronto and is co-founder of the interdisciplinary practice LeuWebb Projects, working both collaboratively and individually in the creation of sound, light and sculpture within the greater field of installation art.
Webb's work has been exhibited at venues including Harbourfront Centre, Toronto; Scotiabank Nuit Blanche, Toronto; and Gæsteatelier Hollufgård, Denmark. He has been the recipient of several awards including the Jurors' Choice, Toronto Design Offsite Festival, 2013; and Ontario Arts Council Exhibition Assistance Grants, 2013, 2014.