At this year’s Art Toronto, Praxis gallery provides a selection of artists who possess an eye for detail. The booth features a colorful menagerie of artistic styles, ranging from the fantasy garden collages by Maria Berrio, to the delicate, miniature landscapes of Augustin Sirai. Five artists—Berrio, Sirai, Ignacio Iturria, Andrea Juan, and Jorge Miño—come together to offer a whimsical, eccentric showing, with work that includes mischievous characters and captivating color palettes.
Maria Berrio’s work inhabits the space between fantasy and reality. Combining fantastical imagery, such as four women reclining with lions, tigers, and rabbits in a flower-filled room, Barrio creates scenes portraying nature in unrealistic harmony. She carefully collages delicate materials such as Japanese paper and gold leaf into scenes that depict mythical gardens, including the Garden of Eden, the Secret garden, and the Midnight Garden. Her exquisitely ornate works draw from well-known artistic forebearers, including Gustav Klimt, Frida Kahlo, and Henri Matisse.
Also taking inspiration from scenes of nature is Augustin Sirai, who paints wooded landscapes that appear to be suspended in midair. Nestled into his carefully detailed works are curious objects, such as a beach chair broken by the weight of a felled palm tree, a desk facing a gold rimmed mirror, and rats scouring a damaged forest. The floating landscapes, painted on a background of white, speak of a dystopian world with an unsettling disconnect from Earth.
In addition to Sirai and Berrio’s dreamlike compositions, Praxis offers monochromatic paintings of twisted staircases by Jorge Miño, vivid photographic prints of colorful scarves juxtaposed with arctic backdrops by Juan, and imaginative works picturing children at play by Iturria. Each of the works contain curious hidden details, setting the stage for an enjoyable showing at Praxis’ Art Toronto booth.
Visit Praxis at Art Toronto 2014, Booth 614, Oct. 24th–27th.