Friday, October 7, 2011

Christian McLeod

 Queen St. W. a sunny autumn afternoon. This is Toronto's art scene, or at least it use to be. Though I still want my thirst for art to be slaked. After much head scratching I turned a corner on a street I knew at least had a number of bars to choose from, so if nothing else another kind of thirst could be fulfilled. Ossington Ave., another street wanting to be a destination for the art starved.Walking aimlessly I came to a curious door propped open, but not completely. My curiosity mounting I dared to stick my head in only to have my jaw drop at the sight of a few large abstract canvases leaning against the wall, and a young man who welcomed me to enter. After introductions, his name is Christian Mcleod, we started chatting about his work. large and bold almost landscapes. One really caught my eye with reminiscence of my youth. Grasses peering through the first snow, upon first glance. Further I looked and further I remembered. The white isn't snow, but in my childhood eyes it was water, and the grasses the grasses peering through in the shallows by the cattails of my fishing with my Father days. Where the big one always evaded our alluring lures. Then there were others, abstract visions of lands I know in my minds eye.
Though besides his art making something else came to my memory. At an age when I saw nothing but a future of living in my studio making art and galleries banging at my door there was no "scene" in hogtown. I remember the Issacs gallery and a few others, all with established stables. There was no Now magazine or Slate art guide. The internet? Queen St. West was populated with hookers and seedy bars. Yorkville was reeling from the exodus of the hippies and didn't quite yet know what it wanted to be. So here is this young fellow working away at wonderful work, and I am sure, not having it all that easy, but yet there he is working away, and I wish him all the best.

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