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TOM Expo
Photograph: JP Karwacki

How a food hall becomes an art gallery: Time Out Market Montréal is hosting emerging artists' work

Starting today, Time Out Market Montréal is creating an all-new exhibition space for the emerging artist Sandrine Ap.

By JP Karwacki
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Starting today, Montreal's food halls don't need to only be for getting together and dining on food from some of the best chefs in the city, and here's the proof: Time Out Market Montréal is creating an exhibition space for emerging artists, beginning today with images by Sandrine Ap.

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Nous sommes heureux d'annoncer notre toute dernière initiative, TOM Expo, qui consiste à organiser tout au long de l'année des expositions pour vous présenter nos incroyables artistes montréalais. Du 23 septembre au 14 octobre, nous présenterons Sandrine Ap @eelise_ndri, une artiste inspirée par la confluence urbaine des cultures qui mélange des influences culturelles et des styles contemporains. Les larges stries blanches sur les yeux de ses sujets représentent l'objectif de l'artiste. Les œuvres ont été créées à partir d'un seul point de vue, mais peuvent être interprétées sous plusieurs angles différents. Avez-vous aussi hâte que nous à la prochaine exposition? …….. We are excited to announce our latest initiative - TOM Expo - where, throughout the year, we will be hosting exhibits to showcase our incredible Montreal artists. From September 23rd until October 14th we will be showcasing Montreal visual artist Sandrine Ap @eelise_ndri . Inspired by the urban confluence of cultures, she mixes cultural vibes with contemporary styles. The thick white streaks across the eyes of her subjects represent the artist's lens; the works have been created from one perspective but can be interpreted from many different lenses. Are you as excited as we are for the upcoming exhibit?

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The exhibition will last from September 23 until October 14, highlighting 15 selected works chosen by the artist. The work can be viewed on the bridge running under the Market's skylight. See it for yourself while you wait for your order to be prepared, and get to know the artist here.

Where and how did your personal path to art begin?

I’ve always been artistic and drawn from a young age. We take art classes in high school, but given how media has portrayed art recently, artists have this image and reputation of struggling, so it's not something you think about for a career or anything serious. If you wanted to do 'serious' art, you'd become an art teacher or graphic designer. I have no interest in doing that.

That's why I just did a lot of art for myself and kept it on my personal social media just my friends. It’s only recently that I made my work open and vulnerable to the public. I’m glad I got out of my comfort zone, as opportunities I never even thought about came to me! But do I want to delete my artwork once I post it within 24 hours? I still do; I guess that’s still a good sign that I’m still sensitive and shy about my work. Humility is still there!

What kinds of mediums do you work with?

My medium has always been pencil and micro pen ink. I draw very detailed work when I use that medium. I still have this poster size artwork I need to finish after many years, but I transitioned into more digital work in last few years because I didn’t really like scanning my artwork.

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Do your subjects—the people you draw—come from personal experience? Photos found online? What are their stories?

They come from various sources online, just browsing, and personal people I know. I tend to pull out something I like in one person and try to merge it with other ones I find, but into a character of my own, so it never really comes from one person.

Everyone you meet in your life affects you in a certain way. The stories vary and are most of the time are not related to the person in any given drawing. They usually stem from random current conversations or past lessons, or sayings from anybody that I have kept in mind. I build off from that. I have a bunch of random quotes or sayings around my place on corners of papers that I find and remember, and it ends up sparking some ideas I initially had. Unfortunately, there’s no secret vault I go to for my artwork.

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Why do you feel it's important for people to see the faces you've selected?

There’s a lot of artwork everywhere, but there’s also a lot of artwork where there’s not always a lot of representation of people of colour in a more “modern” way. Depending on your style, most of the time artists draw themselves into their art or people close to them. I usually draw things I’m feeling or the backstories of my friends, so I believe in representing them or a bit of them in the artwork, to let them know they are being seen and heard. There’s always a story and a lesson.

Sandrine Ap's artwork is now on display at Time Out Market Montréal from September 23 to October 14 as part of a new art exhibition series called TOM Expo. The work can be viewed during the Market's opening hours.

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