Artist insider: Samara Shuter and her five fave Toronto spots for all things artistic
Samara Shuter in her Chinatown studio
Samara Shuter is one of the top emerging artists in the city of Toronto. She is known for her vibrant (and kinda large) paintings of male bodies sans heads decked out in fashionable attire as well as the occasional guitar or muscle car. She has been profiled in magazines such as GQ and Esquire amongst others (including a rather splendid piece from yours truly you can find right here). The artist recently put her immeasurable talents to good use as part of a fundraiser for the Jays Care Foundation in addition to her participation in Baycrest Health Science's groundbreaking Brain Project. Here, Shuter talks about her five Toronto faves for all her artistic essentials.
This is a family run business with a great track record. I love spending extra time in here discovering new products and materials, as well as catching up with the crew. They're incredibly warm and helpful. And their quality and prices are some of the best.
Another handsome family business, you can find Klaus, both the store and the real guy (named after his father, the founder and of the same name). I can sit in this space for hours. It's a mini mecca of modern furniture that speaks to my love for great design and architecture. There are so many wonderful elements that make up this showroom, and its loft was once home to a personal favourite Toronto artist of mine, Thrush Holmes.
I really enjoy the roster of artists at Angell Gallery. This gallery used to be right at Queen and Ossington, but has recently moved up town to Dupont Street. I find the work Jamie curates and collects feels nouveau Canadian. A lot of cool landscapes and nature scenes from the likes of Steve Driscoll and Kim Dorland, but they're unique as they feel sort of punk and modern with a lot of neons and contemporary subject matter.
Toronto Dominion Centre Courtyard (Bay and Wellington)
I love to walk through this courtyard en route to meet (most often a collector). Here you'll find a special public art installation by Canadian sculptor Joe Fafard called The Pasture". These 7 life-sized bronze-sculpted works are so cool. They add an element of "chill" to what is otherwise a bustling environment. Also, I happen to love big buildings and big business. So a visit to this space ignites inspiration from every angle.
Fabric Stores along Queen West
I love to pop in and out of a variety of textile suppliers in this area. I'm often inspired by a collection of pattern designs, and even textures. A part of this I really enjoy, too, is knowing the various distributors the garments are coming from around the world, what's trending and the quality of the material. Much of this colour inspiration finds its way into my own artwork.