Synthetic Psychosis
Mar 20, 2002 - Apr 28, 2002




synthetic psychosis


Elaine Bowen   Amy Bowles   Jay Isaac   Mara Korkola

Suzanne Nacha   Kelly Palmer   Si Si Penaloza

Brad Phillips   Chris Rogers   Gary Spearin


March 20 – April 28, 2002

The Museum of Contemporary Canadian Art is not only pleased, but, in fact,  totally beyond excited to present Synthetic Psychosis: manufacturing dissent in current Toronto painting , an exhibition featuring ten soon-to-be major Toronto/Canadian/international art stars, in our galleries from March 20th to April 28th, 2002.


The initial intention of this exhibition was to identify a specific direction or common trend among the many talented young-ish painters currently active in Toronto’s explosive art scene. Perhaps it is particular to Toronto, or just symptomatic of the pluralistic age in which we live, but this noble task proved to be more challenging than anticipated. Instead, MOCCA curator David Liss opted to embrace the diversity and contradictions of current painting practice and let the artwork speak for itself.


At the risk of perpetrating outmoded cliches of the artist as some type of tormented genius, it does require an audacious leap of imagination, a deviation from the norm – a psychosis, if you will – to convey in a visually tangible way, the elusive emotions, thoughts and ideas that lie just beyond the cusp of rational cognition. This same expansive imaginative capacity is also required of viewers who wish to empathize with these expressions. The intention of this exhibition is to present paintings that penetrate the rational and give visible form to the unnameable.


Regardless of their thematic or theoretical approach, these ten artists all share a strong belief in the power of perceptual poetry and the painted image. This is not to say that their representational strategies are not sound or that the artists are oblivious to historical and contemporary influences. On the contrary; they are quite cognizant of the global context in which they practice. Importantly, each of them believes in the viability of painting. First and foremost, whether the imagery is abstract or representational, all of the paintings in this exhibition are vastly visually intriguing.


To celebrate this highly anticipated exhibition an opening reception and Spring Equinox party will take place at MOCCA on Wednesday March 20th from 7 to 10 or 11pm.

And just to give the party an even more festive ambiance, Canadian Art magazine will also be on hand to launch their Spring 02 issue!

This promises to be the event of the season so don’t even THINK of missing it!!