art galleries toronto

The top 5 neighbourhoods for art galleries in Toronto

Some Toronto neighbourhoods are chock-full of art galleries filled with pieces by an array of Canadian and international artists working across numerous media. Whether you're looking to browse or buy, many of these galleries will help you start your collection as you venture into the art market for the first time.

Here are my picks for the top neighbourhoods for art galleries in Toronto.

Junction Triangle/Bloordale/Dupont
Many of the biggest names in Toronto's contemporary art scene are flocking to this formerly industrial area thanks to the cheap rent it affords. Already here are Arsenal, Daniel Faria, Scrap Metal, Katzman Contemporary, Clint Roenisch and Gallery TPW. And, Cooper Cole opened its new Dupont Street space in July.

Neubacher Shor and Angell Gallery are also in the midst of moving in; the latter opens its first Dupont Street exhibition on September 11. Erin Stump Projects is here too and in a couple of years, MOCCA will have a permanent home at the Tower Automotive Building on Sterling Road.

West Queen West
Despite the mass exodus of galleries (as summarized above), this changing neighbourhood still boasts prominent names in Toronto's visual arts scene including Katharine Mulherin and the photography-focused Stephen Bulger. Until the end of the month, you can check out MOCCA and the Edward Day Gallery.

If you venture off Queen Street, you'll find a variety of spaces including the Koffler Gallery inside the Artscape Youngplace on Shaw, Pari Nadimi Gallery on Niagara and don't forget the regular exhibitions that pop up at The Drake as well as at the Gladstone.

Its proximity to Mink Mile means Yorkville's home to numerous galleries that generally cater to serious collectors. However, this neighbourhood was once a bohemian enclave back in the 1960s. Its artsy roots are still showing thanks to the Yorkville institution (it opened in 1962) Mira Godard Gallery as well as Liss Gallery, Odon Wagner, Gallery Gevik, Gallery One, Leonardo Galleries and Loch Gallery.

Dundas West
A variety of galleries populate this stretch of Dundas and they include those that cater to emerging artists as well as venerable Toronto institutions. Art Metropole, for instance, moved into the area three years ago to carry on its 41 year legacy as an artist-run centre.

OCAD's independent gallery XSPACE is here, as is Loop Gallery and LE Gallery. Other neighbourhood spaces include Hermann & Audrey, MKG127, Olga Korper Christopher Cutts and The Black Cat.

Distillery District
Its cobblestone streets are usually filled with tourists marvelling at the largest collection of Victorian industrial architecture in North America. The Distillery used to be a bit more robust gallery-wise, but it's still a destination. Noteworthy is the massive Corkin Gallery and Julie M. Gallery, which focuses on showing contemporary Israeli, Canadian and North American art.

What did I miss? Add your suggestions in the comments.

Photo of Katzman Contemporary

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