Wednesday, 30 November 2011

Is it a bird? Is it a plane? No, it is a Heroic art exhibition at a new Cabbagetown gallery

Introducing MJG GALLERY
Heroes: Real, Fictional, and Close To Home

Opens December 8th through January 1st

The city's newest neighbourhood art gallery, MJG Gallery officially secures its place among the city's hippest art studios on December 8th, with the launch of its first exhibition:  Heroes: Real, Fictional & Close to Home.  Opened only three months ago by artist Mark Gleberzon, the gallery is more than a new addition to Cabbagetown, it has the rare distinction of being owned and operated by a working artist. 
The Heroes exhibition showcases the work of 16 artists, including Gleberzon himself -- with portrayals ranging from the tame to the surreal.  From leather to weather, mythology to mothers, and Superman to Spiderman; artists such as Laura Culic, A1 Runt Currie, Stev'nn Hall, Bev Jenkins, Carol Westcott, G. Elliott Simpson, Marjolyn Van Der Hart and Carol Westcott are among those providing  their interpretation.  The exhibit will appeal to art lovers, new collectors and interior designers working within a limited budget.
Flight by Marjolyn Van Der Hart's portrays the cyclist as hero, withstanding the bullying vehicles and celebrating the connection to the urban environment. Her End of the Day symbolizes the energy and time it takes to nurture family connections.  Van Der Hart's artwork has been seen on CTV's Marilyn Dennis Show, the Bruce Willis movie RED; and HGTV's "Income Property" and "Pure Design". 
The environment plays hero in several of the exhibition's works. Laura Culic's encaustic Watershed is a tribute to Lake Ontario and the heroic efforts of the Lake Ontario Waterkeeper organization. Her painting depicts a map-like representation of the lake, with abstracted areas of colour and texture. In Family Farm by Carol Westcott, she pays homage to the farm where she grew up, a place that has provided food, shelter and a livelihood for nearly a century.
Artist Bev Jenkins reflects on past and current heroes, as seen in her neo-impressionist painting Lest we forget”.  In 2007, her "Bluebell Forest" was selected for the Royal Academy of Arts Summer Exhibition in London, England.  
 Stev'nn Hall's portrait, Lee as Perseus attempts to capture the vitality found within heroism, beginning with self doubt and fear, and morphing into courage and action.  Hall has enjoyed one-person shows in a number of art galleries. His portrait of Blue Rodeo’s Jim Cuddy won Bravo's "Star Portraits.
Not for the faint of heart, G. Elliott Simpson puts forth a dark, sexual, and Transformer/video game view of the hero archetype in his two studies:  Fahrenheit and  Jimmie V6 & The Ibis.  His photographs have appeared in "Fab" and "The Advocate", and were selected for the "10x10: 100 Portraits Exhibition" at The White House Studio Project (June 2011).
The bold and the beautiful collide throughout the exhibition.  Monument, an abstract by Lex Buchanan, defiantly explore heroism within the realms of art, sculpture and architecture.  Buchanan's images investigate dystopian visions of the city, where concrete reality collides with the heroism of creative worlds.   In contrast, Andrea Rinaldo presents: Totems inspired by the beautiful (Japanese) Chiyogami papers she incorporates into her work. For this show, these three 'totems' stand testament to the story of little Sadako Sisaki who survived the bombing of Hiroshima but succumbed years later to Leukemia.
MJG Gallery owner Mark Gleberzon anchors the heroes theme with powerful pop culture renditions of Superman and Batman, then softens his approach with understated canvases of his nephew Jared who successfully fought and survived brain cancer.  Comic-icons continue with Spiderman in action provided by Animation Connection, the only Toronto-based agent of authentic, studio animation art and limited edition signed comic cells.  Evin Collis' caricature-like watercolour NWMP celebrates the heroism of Sam Steele one of the North West Mounted Police's most valiant and celebrated officers.  His second work, entitled Modern Robin Hood is a contemporary urban re-contextualization of the popular folk hero.
MJG Gallery's Heroes Exhibition also includes works by: Blair Chivers, Bryan Levy-Young, Sandy Middleton, A1 Runt and James Stacey. Mediums range from oil on wood and oil on canvas; to acrylic and encaustic and mixed media.  
"Heroes: Real, Fictional & Close to Home" opens at MJG Gallery, 555 Parliament Street, Toronto on Thursday, December 8th, and continues until January 1st.  Hours are: Wednesday - Sunday 11am - 6pm. Monday and Tuesday: By appointment only. For more information call  416-923-4031 / /  Facebook: MJG Gallery


Issued by/Media contacts:

Stephen Weir   416-489-5868 cell: 416-801-3101
Linda Crane       905-257-6033  cell: 416-727-0112
Editors Note: images, gallery & artist interviews and personal  tours available to media via Stephen or Linda

Sunday, 27 November 2011

It is all about Heroes. New Cabbagetown Gallery plans December 8th exhibition

MJG Gallery presents "HEROES"
December 8, 2011 - January 1, 2012
555 Parliament St., Toronto
Toronto's new MJG Gallery, owned by artist Mark Gleberzon presents "Heroes",  a compendium of themed  works commissioned from 13 contemporary artists.  Figurative in nature, the collection is inspired by heroes gleaned from mythology, real life and current events.  The small Cabbagetown gallery offers affordable and original art, sized for small spaces.  Mediums used in this exhibit include encaustic, acrylic, oil, mixed media and photography.  For more information 416-923-4031 or
Cutline:   Fahrenheit. 16"x12". Photograph by G. Elliott Simpson.

Thursday, 24 November 2011


The Late Great Canadian Artist Is Inspiration For Christmas Gift List At The McMichael Canadian Art Collection, Klienburg, Ontario.

The West Wind -  Tom Thomson
Tom Thomson cup
During his brief, but brilliant career, Tom Thomson was profoundly influenced by the Canadian landscape and his influence on Canadian art has become invaluable; it is astonishing to know that Thomson’s patron, Dr. McCallum, would receive sketches from the artist with a request to try and sell them for $10 or $15 each! Bargain gift hunting these days for Thomson originals may prove somewhat challenging, but don’t fret or frown—the McMichael Gallery Shop has plenty of Tom Thomson gifts for all your friends and family this season!

A Treasury of Tom Thomson, $24.95, paperback, 160 pages with 62 colour illustrations. (Douglas & McIntyre, October 2011). Art historian Joan Murray has constructed a beautiful, intimate treasury of Thomson´s “best paintings,” as chosen by these artist friends and later major collectors, and has written an insightful commentary on each one. Knowing the story that lies behind Thomson´s great works helps us to view these paintings with new insight and appreciation. We understand what makes these works special.

Northern Light: The Enduring Mystery of Tom Thomson and the Woman Who Loved Him, by author Roy MacGregor, $22.00, softcover, 356 pages. (Random House Canada, 2011). MacGregor breaks new ground, re-examining the mysteries of Thomson's life, loves and violent death in the definitive non-fiction account. As Roy MacGregor's richly detailed Northern Light reveals, not much is as it seems when it comes to Tom Thomson, the most iconic of Canadian painters. Philandering deadbeat or visionary artist and gentleman, victim of accidental drowning or deliberate murder, the man's myth has grown to obscure the real view—and the answers to the mysteries are finally revealed in these pages.

The West Wind, Giclee Reproduction, $200.00, 18.5 x 21.25 inches, unframed, or
The Jack Pine, large reproduction, $25.00, 16 x 20 inches, unframed.
Two of Thomson's most popular paintings are currently on tour in the highly acclaimed European exhibition Painting Canada: Tom Thomson and the Group of Seven, organized by Dulwich Picture Gallery in London, England. Giclee reproductions are a unique method of fine art reproduction. Using archival dye based inks, and archival watercolour papers, they are properly matched, and will last from 50-200 years. Image quality, sharpness, and colour saturation, place Giclee reproductions in a league of their own.

Right in the first room you are faced by two of the most totemic and radical images...Tom Thomson's Jack Pine and The West Wind from 1916, are set against the water and hills of Algonquin Park, the brash and windy wilderness he made his own.
 -- The Independent, London, UK

Wildflowers Silk Scarf, $40.00
Tom Thomson painted Wildflowers as an oil on board in 1915 and it is now a part of the McMichael’s permanent collection, gifted by Mr. R.A. Laidlaw. Designed with the Wildflowers image, these beautiful 100% silk scarves come in two different styles, with a yellow or green border. The scarf is a magnificent article of Thomson art, sized at 34 x 35 inches (88 x 85 cm). Dryclean only.

McMichael Membership with McIntosh® Tom Thomson Campfire Set of Mugs. Give the gift of a McMichael Membership and receive 25% off a McIntosh® Tom Thomson Campfire Set of Mugs to top off your gift...or treat yourself! With the purchase of an Individual Membership, receive a McIntosh® Tom Thomson Set of 2 Campfire Mugs for only $18 ($25 retail value). With the purchase of a Family Membership, receive a McIntosh® Tom Thomson Set of 4 Campfire Mugs for only $30 ($40 retail value). Presented in a keepsake box, each mug is four inches high and holds 360ml and is microwave and dishwasher safe. These special Gift Memberships may be purchased in person at the Gallery Shop or by calling 905.893.1121 ext 2207. For details, please email us at or visit

The McMichael Gallery Shop has a wonderful selection of gifts for everyone on your list. To place your order, call 905.893.1121 or toll free 1.888.213.1121, ext. 2237, or shop online anytime, day or night, for art reproductions, books, exhibition merchandise, placemats, calendars, and more at

About the McMichael Canadian Art Collection

The McMichael Canadian Art Collection is an agency of the Government of Ontario and acknowledges the support of the Ministry of Tourism and Culture. It is the foremost venue in the country showcasing the Group of Seven and their contemporaries. In addition to touring exhibitions, its permanent collection consists of more than 5,500 artworks, including paintings by the Group of Seven and their contemporaries, First Nations and Inuit artists. The gallery is located on Islington Avenue, north of Major Mackenzie Drive in Kleinburg, and is open daily from 10:00 am to 4:00 pm. Admission is $15 for adults, $12 for seniors/students and $30 for families. There is a $5 fee for parking. For more information about the gallery, visit

For further information or to receive High Res images, contact:

Stephen Weir, Publicist
Gallery: 905.893.1121 ext. 2529
Toronto Office: 416.489.5868
Cell: 416.801.3101

Monday, 21 November 2011

Media Alert for upcoming Steel Pan Church Service in Mississauga

Media Welcome to Cover/Attend: THE CHRISTMAS OFFERING A religous celebration of Christmas Featuring: Choir, Steel Pan Orchestra, Dancers, and the KCM Praise Team WHEN: Friday December 9, 2011. 6.30 pm. Pre-show beings. 7.30- 9.00pm Christmas Offering Begins featuring Worship in Steel (steel pan orchestra) Sunday December 11, 2011 5.30 pm Pre-show beings. 6.30- 8.30pm Christmas Offering Begins featuring Ron Kenoly, Worship in Steel (steel pan orchestra)
Where: Kingdom Covenant Centre #20-1224 Dundas Street East Mississauga, ON Admission: Free. An offering will be collected For More Information ISSUED FOR THE CHURCH BY: Stephen Weir Stephen Weir & Associates | or 2482 Yonge Street, Unit 45032, Toronto, ONT. CANADA. M4P 3E3 Tel: 416-489-5868

Thursday, 17 November 2011

Post Script to Story About Stephen Job Devices That Have Changed How PR is done!

. Cue the Bike Helmet Camera/I-Pod .
My son Andrew and I took in the Toronto premier of My Week With Marilyn this evening at the Varsity Theatre. Big event. Too many invites sent out, so many people with tickets were turned away. We were two of the lucky ones - and paid for our luck by sitting in the neck craning front row. Our tickets were thanks to McMichael Canadian Art Collection Marilyn Monroe curator Chris Finn. He had assisted with the promotion of the movie by Alliance Films. Always interesting to watch other PR people work their events. At the end of the film the evening's publicist set up director Simon Curtis outside the theatre for a quick interview with a social media reporter. Have no idea who the fellow was, but, he didn't seem to feel silly (nor did Simon Curtis) conducting the interview with his camera/I-Pod mounted on his bike helmet! Photo by Andrew Weir.

Friday, 4 November 2011

Pizza Gets Social With The Media At The Mad Italian


On Thursday evening (November 3rd) Social media practioners were invited to sample the new Zazzu Pizza Cone at the Mad Italian Gelato Bar on College Street in Toronto.
It was an all male turn-out for the event. Eight tweeters, bloggers and facebookers showed up to sample the new food.


Owner Eli Turkienicz,the man who has purchased the cone making technology and has brought the ZAZZU Hot Cone to Toronto (on left), stands with his cone chef and his business manager, as they deliver a meatball cone and a pepperoni cone to a reporter/blogger for Snap Magazine.

The cone has been available in Toronto for just a month. " The product was first launched in Europe. We purchased the special baking ovens from a manufacturer in Italy, where the products is already very popular," said Turkienicz. " What we have found a bit of a shock is that the cone is a huge hit in Brazil!"

The Mad Italian makes the crispy Zazzu dough in its Bayview cafe (1581 Bayview), and then bakes them on site in specially designed cone stands. The cooking process takes 5-10 minutes. At the Social Media Night bloggers got to try the eight different fillings that the cones come in (pepperoni, vegetarian, margherita, meatball, eggplant parmignana, spinach & ricotta, turkey & pesto and procuitto & mushroom).

OTM magazine writer Andrew Weir finishes off a pizza cone

The Zazzu Hot Cone is improving on a long standing style of casual pizza eating in Toronto's Italian restuarant and club district. For decades clubbers have purchsed pizza slices, and curled them into cone shapes and ate the food as they walked down College Street. Of course, more often than not there was a painful slide-off of the pizza pie slice into the palm of your hand. Problem Solved!

Tweet before you eat. Craigg Slowly (ThatTDotGuy) had 200 followers check out his tweeted pictures of a Cone before he actually took a bite!

Now with the Zazzu Pizza Cone, because it is cooked in the cone shape, there is no slippage at all. They are great on the go, for lunch or after pubbing or clubbing. The Mad Italian is a modern, clean restaurant, so you can eat the cone sitting down (while you tweet) or while you are strolling the College Street track!

Owner Eli Turkienicz - photo by Andrew Weir

The Zazzu Cone baking oven - photo by Andrew Weir

Wednesday, 2 November 2011


Find out why everyone is talking about the city's most innovative fresh taste sensation

the mad ITALIAN Gelato Bar
589 College Street

invites you to an


5 pm to 7 pm

Food bloggers are invited to drop by The Mad Italian Gelato Bar, 589 College Street on your way home from work this Thursday evening to sample ZAZZU Hot Cones, Toronto's FIRST pizza in a cone. Similar products have hit the streets of Italy, Brazil and New York City and are finally here!

Meet The Mad Italian owner, Eli Turkienicz who will explain the inspiration and development behind ZAZZU Hot Cones. Watch how each hot cone is individually made using The Mad Italian's exclusive crispy pizza dough recipe, and then baked in specially designed cone stands. Try the original pizza sauce and your choice of toppings. Now available in 8 delicious varieties, ZAZZU Hot Cones are taking the slide off of pizza pie slices, and putting flavour and warmth in the palm of your hand. Great on the go, for lunch, after pubbing or clubbing, or anytime you want an easy to eat, hearty snack made from fresh ingredients.

The Mad Italian Gelato Bar, 589 College St. south side between Clinton and Manning. Parking 2 blocks West. News releases and images will be provided at the restaurant. For more information visit
To register your attendance please contact:
Linda Crane 905-257-6033 cell 416-727-0112
*Please bring this invitation with you