24 Feb 2010
Two Israeli Artists, Two Worlds of Arts (3)
This week I interviewed two abstract artists, our most prolific member of the Israeli Artists Group of Toronto, painter Bianka Guna, and a newer addition who started painting less than a year ago, Dorit Elbaz. Here is the English version of the article. You can also read the PDF version of the article, as well as download the entire paper from Shalom Toronto’s site (this week the paper only published the English version).
Two Israeli Artists, Two Worlds of Art (Part 3)
By Moshe Mikanovsky
Shalom Toronto, February 25, 2010
The Israeli Artists Group of Greater Toronto brings together Israeli artists in different disciplines of visual arts, to work, socialize and enhance the Israeli and Jewish culture in Toronto. In this series of articles, we will open a window to some of our artists who live and work in our midst.
In this installment of our series, I would like to introduce two very talented abstract painters.
First, the prolific painter Bianka Guna, who produces new paintings faster than I can write this article! Bianka was born in Romania, from where she made Aliya to Israel in the late 80s. By the end of the 90s Bianka moved to Toronto. Although academically trained as Mechanical Engineer and Software Developer, as well as Art Illustrator, Bianka’s art style is free and fluent, exploded with movement and deep rich colours, devoid of any representation of familiar objects.
Living in different continents and countries, and traveling extensively around the world, freed Bianka’s spirit, allowing her to explore and change. She defines herself as Conceptual Artist, continually researching fresh and unique ways to express – and materialize- renewed growth and ongoing spiritual development by way of new methods, means and revelatory techniques. Her work is also influences by other abstract artists, some of which she admires, like Kandinsky, Gorky, Pollack, and Rothko
Bianka shows her work in many venues – galleries, group shows, international art projects – going by
the motto that you are not a serious painter if you are not at any moment in at least five projects or shows. One of the interesting projects she is part of is the “Planet Earth, Planet Art”, an Art Book Project (due March 1st) in support of the environmental and social grassroots network Friends Of The Earth International. Ninety-five artists from all over the world present their artwork as a voice raised to bring awareness of the urgent problems of the imbalanced lifestyles and unsustainable environmental consumption we humans face, accompanied by a personal statement which brings the clarity of the artist to these problems.
Another international project she is participating in is The Sketchbook Project. Her sketchbook, titled “A Million Little..Trips” is on tour, showing throughout the USA in 5 different cities.
The second artist is Dorit Elbaz. Dorit started only recently exploring her artistic side, after working for many years in the travel industry. Dorit was born in Israel and moved to Toronto with her family after completing her army service. Dorit started her professional career as a special education teacher, working with children with disabilities. Then she followed her parents into the family business. After eighteen years as a travel agent Dorit felt she needs new direction and start looking for a change, this is when she found the power of creativity. Helping and supporting her on this new journey are her husband and three handsome boys, whom she makes sure to remind me, are the most important thing in her life.
Her first exposure to painting was in a mixed media workshop she took with artist Jill Segal, following a visit to the Spiritual Diva organized art show at the MacDonald house. She fell in love with the colours and possibilities they introduced to her. Crimson, purple and turquoise found ways to her canvases, along with many other materials. In addition to the paint and mediums, Dorit uses mix media – broken and torn objects from around her home and life, items that finished their normal usage and now create the basis for her art works – and the process of trial and error, to create her “In the Moment” art. Here is how she explains it: “I feel that the only place I can create is my home. When I am inspired, I make myself nana tea, put on some Israeli music and start creating. I converted my Shabbat room to be my studio. I don’t always know how the empty canvas in front of me will look like by the end of the process… I flow with the paint and the mixed media, listening to my feelings in that moment…”
Dorit is very involved in the community. In the past she took part in organizing many events and fund raisers, supporting organizations such as JWIC, Ending Violence Against Women and One Family Fund. While finding her love for the arts, she started representing several local artists, helping them sell their artwork to galleries and other vendors. This month she is showing her artwork at the new Aroma Espresso Café on Yonge and Eglinton, supporting the Israeli business in the GTA.
Bianka is represented by several galleries and will show in the near future in number of shows, such as the 25th Toronto Watercolour Society Anniversary Spring Juried Show at the Papermill Art Gallery (March 17th-28th), the 5th Annual Heintzman Invitational at Bay Thorn Street, Markham (April 23rd-25th) , and a Two Artists Show , Odgers Berndson, RBC building , 200 Bay Street (1st May-31st July 2010)
Bianka also teaches many seminars and courses in the GTA. For more information and to view more of her art, please visit www.biankaguna.com.
Dorit’s work is currently shown at Aroma Espresso Café, Yonge and Eglinton (2300 Yonge) until February 28th, 6:30AM – 11:00PM. Prints of her works can be purchased at Heart to Find and at Orchid Florist, both in Thornhill. She will be participating at the Diva Artist Show “Spiritual Expressions Through Art”, MacDonald House, Thornhill, April 13-18.
To contact Dorit please call 416 520 4351 or email her at email@example.com
Both Bianka and Dorit will be participating in the Israeli Artists Group show in May 15-18 at the MacDonald House, 121 Centre Street, Thornhill.
Moshe Mikanovsky is a member of the Israeli Artists Group of Greater Toronto (firstname.lastname@example.org, www.mikanovsky.com)
- On Artistic Success with Artist Bianka Guna
- Two Israeli Artists, Two Worlds of Arts (Suzi Phillipsohn and Myriam Levy)
- Two Israeli Artists, Two Worlds of Arts (2) (Irit Lepkin and Inna Gorshtein)