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Best of Toronto

The Best Contemporary Art Galleries for Emerging Artists in Toronto

Posted by Jess Carroll / August 27, 2014

art galleries torontoThe best galleries for emerging artists in Toronto are great places for a truly divergent, original art experience. If you're looking for art that's not expensive, and not created en masse to decorate a condo, these venues will show you work that's experimental, seedy, playful, and ignores everything we know about art from the past - all in spaces that are often run by the emerging artists themselves. If you're jonesing to rub elbows with the new guys in the city's art scene, you can get your fix here.

Here are the best galleries for emerging artists in Toronto.

See also:

The Best Contemporary Art Galleries in Toronto
The Best Photography Galleries in Toronto

The Black Cat

The Black Cat

Located in a converted 1950s smoke shop at Dundas and Roncesvalles, The Black Cat is one of the most Toronto-centric gallery spaces, showing mostly local art, and intersecting three art-heavy neighbourhoods - Bloordale, The Junction, and Roncesvalles. With a heavy exhibition turnover rate, a ton of diversity of content, and well-attended openings, they offer lots of opportunity for emerging artists to have their work seen by lots of eyes. More »

Hashtag Gallery

Hashtag Gallery

Hashtag's mandate revolves around showcasing the energetic, creative output of the internet-savvy generation (i.e. the ones who get what "#hashtag" refers to). As a result, most of the work here references illustration and design more than didactic practices; Hashtag's artists are a diverse bunch working in a variety of media. The gallery also offers support services like framing, art installation, and event planning to help make art creation a bit easier for everyone. More »

LE Gallery

LE Gallery

On Dundas West, near aesthetically-similar spaces like Erin Stump Projects, Jr. Projects, and Art Metropole, LE Gallery hosts emerging artists exclusively. In fact, LE's young director Wil Kucey (who opened the gallery in his third year of Curatorial Studies at OCAD) says that he's more invested in an artist's practice as a whole than their specific works - inspiring words for artists who have yet to find their niche, which is, sadly, a necessary part of navigating the art world successfully. More »

MKG127

MKG127

MKG127 is one of the few galleries for national emerging artists that puts up non-traditional, experimental shows (for instance, last summer's all-female group show). The space uniquely offers two exhibition areas, and often, in group shows, emerging talent has an opportunity to show bold work alongside one of their inventory of established artists. More »

Xpace Gallery

Xpace Gallery

An institution strictly for emerging artists, Xpace is a non-commercial artist-run centre, funded by the OCAD Student Union - and much of the work here features its students or alumni. The gallery's frequent programming typically includes a group show in the front, a solo show in the back, and a one-artist window space at their successful new-ish Lansdowne gallery. Expect to see some of the city's best young talent here at their well-attended openings (oh, and lots of cool fashion too). More »

Goodfellas

Goodfellas

Tucked on a small residential space off Noble Street in Parkdale, Goodfellas is one of the largest and most unique commercial art spaces in the city. Their roster is made up entirely of painters, so it's an excellent space to come look for art that you may actually consider putting above your mantel. It's also a great venue for a party - as the site of the most recent Vice Photo Show, the multi-level space was great for coupling art-gazing with socializing. More »

Narwhal Projects

Narwhal Projects

Narwhal focuses primarily on didactic, discursive projects that feed into the criticality of the contemporary art world. With an international wield that comes from its well-connected founders and involvement in art events, the gallery's new-and-improved Junction space is one of the best arenas for emerging arts to create liaisons with a larger community. More »

Huntclub

Huntclub

As both a studio and a gallery, Huntclub offers emerging talent a place to work, find mentorship in business practices and show their work, all in one. The gallery epresents an eclectic range of creative types with a special interest in craft and artisanal work. The founders hope to engage the artistic community in a social way, and bring accessible art to Little Italy. More »

Milk Glass Co.

Milk Glass Co.

Marketed as both a gallery and a "culture forum," Milk Glass Co. champions Toronto's most promising up-and-comers in all corners of the creative community, using playful art exhibits to complement album launches and their legendary, raucous DJ nights. More »

Discussion

11 Comments

Shawn / August 27, 2014 at 10:22 am
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Check out the instagram account for MarcMyCanvas. Awesome artwork http://marcmycanvas.com/
Graeme / August 27, 2014 at 01:32 pm
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Thanks for including us in the list! We're glad people are liking the program at #Hashtag. Hope to see you out to a show soon!

-Graeme

P.S. Project Gallery out in the East end is also a great spot for emerging art.
Miles / August 27, 2014 at 03:56 pm
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Too bad that only one of the galleries on this list, Xpace, actually pays artists fees, and that the rest are commercial spaces; the majority of whom charge artists to exhibit work in their spaces. Hey blogTO, let's try to see more than one artist-run centre per "Best Gallery" list in the future, given that many are celebrating their 35th and 40th anniversaries this year and still continue to support the work of Canada's emerging artists, month after month.
Ray / August 28, 2014 at 12:18 am
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I'm a big fan of Neubacher Shor Contemporary. Although they hold alot of private parties so sometimes it can be closed to the public.

http://www.blogto.com/gallery/neubacher-shor-contemporary
Cath / August 28, 2014 at 09:17 am
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What about Imminent Art (www.imminentart.com), an annual art exhibition that solely features the work of emerging Canadian artists that show a promising artistic future.

Imminent prides itself on creating a unique environment that gives young artists the chance to sell their work in a gallery setting and interact with gallery directors, art collectors and the general public.

Imminent Art is in its final week of the 2014 group exhibition, "Emerging Canadian Artists," at Berenson Fine Art, 212 Avenue Road in Toronto.
artlover / August 28, 2014 at 05:19 pm
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There is also Walnut Contemporary, affiliated with Walnut Studios, on Walnut, near King and Bathurst.
http://www.walnutcontemporary.com/
http://walnutstudios.com/
http://www.blackplanet.com / September 1, 2014 at 01:27 pm
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Write more, thats all I have to say. Literally, it seems as
though you relied on the video to make your point.
You clearly know what youre talking about, why throw
away your intelligence on just posting videos to your blog when you could be giving us something enlightening
to read?
all payday loan lenders / September 1, 2014 at 03:04 pm
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I ddo not een understand how I ended up here, but I assumed this post was once good.
I don't understand who yyou are however certainly you're going to a well-known blogger in case you aren't
already. Cheers!
Rich Galfour replying to a comment from Miles / September 2, 2014 at 12:50 pm
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In agreement with Miles - let's see a list of Best Spaces that *pay*, and don't charge artists.
Confused/confounded? See : carfac.ca/tools/fees/

Missing from the list is the recently shuttered Gallerywest (gallerywest.info), which supported a huge number of emerging artists during their 4 year tenure.
shovel knight xword / November 4, 2014 at 04:00 am
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"When we got married I knew what I was getting myself into. They may love to rock the boat and make waves, but they are always willing to help put things right when they create real problems for people. He is probably the nicest male cast member in the history of the show and one of the most loved.
Sirkka / November 16, 2014 at 01:42 am
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Samaan_aikaan kojonkoski carlo palatsi riekkinen liperi vapo ,
aleksei tase metsä sattumalta.

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