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Neubacher Shor Contemporary

Posted by Elena Potter / Posted on April 14, 2011

Neubacher Shor Gallery TorontoNeubacher Shor Contemporary (NSC) is only officially launching this month, but it's already a hive of activity. When I visited late afternoon the Friday before the official launch party, there were several people coming and going from the back-alley Parkdale space, working on the launch preparations, touring the space for future endeavours, or just saying hello.

Although the space proudly retains the exposed brick and ductwork of its days as a windowless warehouse, the gallery's business is anything but gritty. The joint venture of partners Manny Neubacher and Anya Shor, NSC operates as an art gallery and event venue. Sure, I thought on my way to the Brock Ave location, any gallery could call itself an event space if it were big enough, but NSC's not kidding around: in addition to an impressive 3000-square foot exhibition area, the gallery has found room for a full catering kitchen. They're officially partnered with Eatertainment, one of the city's most high-profile caterers.

image_001.jpgNot to be outdone by the event aspect, though, the artwork gets its own innovative share of the space. Four blocky movable walls in the gallery's second room provide additional wall space. They also function as storage for the larger works that aren't currently on display. "We like the idea that we can morph the space," says Neubacher of the flexibility offered by the wall sections.

P1000656.jpgNeubacher himself isn't a newcomer to the art world, having owned and operated Gallery Neubacher near Yonge and Bloor from 2004-2008. But after a two-year hiatus following the closing of this space, he and Shor were ready to jump back into the gallery business. He describes the gallery's vision as "Canadian contemporary," representing almost exclusively Canadian artists, and he usually sticks to a gut feeling to select artwork for the gallery. Painting and photography are the gallery's mainstays, but they are also looking to branch out into live cinema and video art.

P1000657.jpgThe idea of combining the art space with events was partly inspired by the size of the "gallery." Although they were initially looking for a smaller space, the ceiling height and original finishes at 5 Brock were too good to pass up. After extensive renovations, including the aforementioned kitchen and movable walls, the space has gallery-ready track lighting, and white walls interspersed with the gritty brick. Neubacher boasts the gallery's capaciousness as a benefit for the events side of the business, known as "NSC The Venue."

_MG_0455.jpgWhile the term "events" is rather vague, Neubacher assures me that NSC is unlikely to become "the kind of place where you go every Friday any pay a $10 cover." The events will run the gamut from the usual exhibition openings and artist talks, to musical or cinematic performances, fashion shows, or film screenings--in Neubacher's mind, these worlds are all related. NSC isn't shying away from private parties and wedding receptions, either. Neubacher says the marriage of events and contemporary art is about creating reasons to go to the gallery, and always having something going on--what he calls "life in the space." Good thing it already seems to be full of life.


Images 1, 2, 5, and 6 courtesy Neubacher Shor Contemporary.



b-ore / April 14, 2011 at 10:19 am

Oh wait no..i mean this is amazzzzzz...
spppppshhhh / April 14, 2011 at 10:46 am
I sure hope nobody tags that beautiful metal door.
mike in parkdale replying to a comment from spppppshhhh / April 14, 2011 at 12:38 pm
there was a large permission mural by some of Toronto's most respected street artists that was cut out when the door was put in.

it's the circle of life. But ideally, the art gallery commissions someone to paint the door and changes it up a few times a year. That would be the best of both worlds.
Alex / April 14, 2011 at 12:59 pm
Look like a beautiful space!

Mixed use is a great idea too in order to get people to come in and keep their doors open.
seraph / April 14, 2011 at 09:30 pm
@b-ore: Did you go to the opening? Nothing boring about that!
meh / April 15, 2011 at 08:35 am
I live in a loft.
I dont need to go to another one, thats full of pretension no less.
m / April 15, 2011 at 09:33 am
don't nobody touch that door!
Brian Patterson / April 15, 2011 at 09:54 am
Congrats to my friend Manny on opening one of the hippest gallery spaces in Toronto!! Going to talk to him about doing my events there..
anya shor replying to a comment from mike in parkdale / April 15, 2011 at 11:30 am
Mike, that is our plan for that back section of wall (not the door!). We're hoping to make that a rotating art wall. If you know the names and contacts of the artists you're referring to, please come by and let us know.
mike in parkdale replying to a comment from anya shor / April 15, 2011 at 11:45 am
That's great to hear!

The people on the wall were Wysper, Ren, Task and the DOH crew. That's what I think anyway. kwest did that amazing mural (yellow / gray / purple tones) across the lane. As for contacts, I'd suggest making friends with The Mascot and letting them know you're planning a wall.

good luck with the gallery
anya shor replying to a comment from mike in parkdale / April 15, 2011 at 11:59 am
Thanks so much, Mike!

Yeah, I thought about asking the guys at Mascot. We've made friends already- they're really great people, as is the place and the coffee!

Hope we meet in person some time. Take care.
Matt / April 15, 2011 at 04:34 pm
Great idea on the back wall, it is a Wysper piece that is still there. Mike is correct and you can get in contact with those artists at the Mascot.

I went to the opening and the NSC space is amazing. It's exciting to see a big, ambitious gallery opening in Parkdale.
janine Metcalfe / May 12, 2011 at 08:55 am
Hey Anya
Congrats on the beautiful space. I'm in Ontario for a few months and will stop by soon.
Well done. Love it.
jerry waese / May 30, 2011 at 05:38 pm
stunning space, bravo
mia rauhala / July 8, 2013 at 09:41 am
Could i please be so bold as to ask you to take a quick look at my art as it is looking for a home. Your gallery is most lovely. Thanks for your time . Mia

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