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Ring in the New Year with the AGO on January 3 with 1st Thursday Art Party

Exhilarating performances by Dan Bergeron, Basia Bulat, Jay Ferguson and others help celebrate the start of an art-filled 2013

(TORONTO – Jan. 2, 2013) The Art Gallery of Ontario (AGO) revs up 2013 with an irresistible Canadian-inspired 1st Thursday party on Jan. 3, 2013. Event-goers will enjoy art-making experiences, live music, art talks and rare out-of-the-vault sights from the Gallery’s collection of Canadian art. Doors open to adults 19+ at 6:30 p.m. Tickets are on sale now, and revellers are encouraged to buy tickets in advance as they consistently sell out each month.

Toronto artist Dan Bergeron invites guests to help him create a one-of-a-kind mural in the Irina Moore Gallery. Known for his photo-based, paste-up street art, Bergeron will install The Great Canadian Apology Wall inside the AGO for one night only. The mural will feature photographs of party guests, who will write their own personal apologies on their portraits.

Party-goers have the opportunity to sketch landscape-inspired still-lifes composed by Toronto artist collective Life of a Craphead and local artist Jennifer Rose Sciarrino. For the novice, a paint-by-numbers art-making station teaches visitors how to paint a landscape like the Canadian masters.

Singer songwriter Basia Bulat fills Walker Court with her Juno- and Polaris-nominated tunes at 9:30 p.m. Inspired by her cross-country travels, Bulat’s symphonic folk-pop paints the North American landscape in soulful melodies. Casey Mecija of Toronto band Ohbijou takes to the decks all night long as DJ on the main floor while Jay Ferguson of Canadian alternative rock band Sloan mixes a special DJ set in Galleria Italia.

A series of inspired pop-up performances in the AGO’s Canadian Collection will bring classic Canadian artworks to life. Beginning at 8 p.m., Georgiana Uhlyarik, the AGO’s assistant curator of Canadian art, discusses works of the Gallery’s extensive Canadian collection. Musician and author Dave Bidini of Toronto band Rheostatics crosses the gallery at 8:30 p.m. to share his thoughts. At 9 p.m. Toronto artists Sook-Yin Lee and Adam Litovitz perform a dialogue about  two oil paintings by James Wilson Morrice entitled MORRICE FLED.

The Marvin Gelber Print and Drawing Centre’s Out of the Vault exhibition series returns with real and imagined landscapes touching on themes of migration, exploration and environmental distress. Works by Tom Thomson, Emily Carr, Kazuo Nakamura, David Blackwood and others will be on display from 7 p.m. to 9 p.m.

House-made poutine and taco stands are showcased on the menu.  Galleria Italia will again offer oysters on ice and Black Market Churros. Bars serving margaritas, mojitos, wine and beer will be dotted around the Gallery. Visitors looking for more than a taste can enjoy FRANK’s Frida & Diego–inspired 1st Thursday three-course prix fixe Menu for just $35. Make reservations by calling (416) 979-6688.

Twenty-dollar ticket packages are available online for Frida & Diego: Passion, Politics and Painting and January’s 1st Thursday. The exhibition will be open until 9:30 p.m., with the last entry at 9 p.m.  AGO Members enter the exhibition for free.

Tickets for January’s 1st Thursday are on sale now. Regular-priced tickets are $10 in advance and $12 at the door. Admission for AGO Members is $8 in advance and $10 at the door. Book tickets online by visiting

For up-to-date details about 1st Thursdays, visit and follow #AGO1st on Twitter.
Contemporary programming at the AGO is generously supported by the Canada Council for the Arts.

The AGO acknowledges the generous support of its Signature Partners: American Express, Signature Partner of the Conservation Program; and Aeroplan, Signature Partner of the Photography Collection Program. 
With a collection of more than 80,000 works of art, the Art Gallery of Ontario is among the most distinguished art museums in North America. From the vast body of Group of Seven and signature Canadian works to the African art gallery, from the cutting-edge contemporary art to Peter Paul Rubens’ masterpiece The Massacre of The Innocents, the AGO offers an incredible art experience with each visit. In 2002 Kenneth Thomson’s generous gift of 2,000 remarkable works of Canadian and European art inspired Transformation AGO, an innovative architectural expansion by world-renowned architect Frank Gehry that in 2008 resulted in one of the most critically acclaimed architectural achievements in North America. Highlights include Galleria Italia, a gleaming showcase of wood and glass running the length of an entire city block, and the often-photographed spiral staircase, beckoning visitors to explore. The AGO has an active membership program offering great value, and the AGO’s Weston Family Learning Centre offers engaging art and creative programs for children, families, youth and adults. Visit to find out more about upcoming special exhibitions, to learn about eating and shopping at the AGO, to register for programs and to buy tickets or memberships.

Oct. 20, 2012–Jan. 20, 2013: Frida & Diego: Passon, Politics and Painting
March. 16–June.16, 2013: Revealing the Early Renaissance: Stories and Secrets in Florentine Art

The AGO is funded in part by the Ontario Ministry of Tourism, Culture and Sport. Additional operating support is received from the City of Toronto, the Canada Council for the Arts and generous contributions from AGO members, donors and private-sector partners.

For more information on 1st Thursdays at the AGO, please contact:
Laura Banks; News Officer, AGO Communications
416-979-6660, ext. 504,
Andrea-Jo Wilson; News Officer, AGO Communications
416-979-6660, ext. 403,

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