Must Attend Exhibit: Tyler Armstrong’s ‘Unknown Pleasures’

Goodfellas Gallery
1266 Queen Street West  

Toronto, ON  M6K 1J4
Rear entrance off Noble Street

Just in time for Halloween weekend, Toronto-based artist Tyler Armstrong will reveal a new body of work that will transform the concept of nostalgia and excite the nerves. 

Tyler Armstrong is a fairly new addition to the Toronto eye, but has been fluent in paints for years. What started as a hobby has transformed into a heated passion. A self-taught artist, Tyler daringly creates haunting images of a darker territory with wild lines and vibrant colour that seem to balance in perfect harmony alongside the disturbing imagery. The intensity is blinding, the emotions are raw, the path is prolific, and Tyler has certified himself as an artist that exudes all of these characteristics in his life and his work.

As Tyler explains:

“Beneath every surface is a greater truth.  UNKNOWN PLEASURES is my genuine attempt to dissect more than the surface and reveal a greater sense of truth in all things through experimental techniques. It is trying to understand what inspires the heart and boils the blood. It is evolving to a place of comfort with the things that contort and conflict my reality. It is embracing the darkness in buried corners in order to see light in wider spectrums. It is confusion and order in a beautifully choreographed dance. 

At the very core, it is my attempt to share an internal hunger in the midst of growth and desire.  The world is a perfect place to get lost in pleasure, lust, life, death and love.”


What is the message you are trying to convey from the work that you do as an artist?
I am painting what I see and what I feel to the best of my ability. Society has a large impact on what I create and I want the viewer to lean on their intuition when viewing my work. Sometimes there is no message that I consciously know of and at times there is. You don’t need to look to deep into art; you just have to be able to look without turning away.

Can you elaborate on how your current “UNKNOWN PLEASURES” series came about?
First and foremost I am incredibly fortunate to be exhibiting in a second solo show in two years at Goodfellas Gallery; this is a gift. I am trying to evolve in the process, to break old habits and risk comfort to uncover a greater truth about myself and the world around me. UNKNOWN PLEASURES is trying to understand what inspires the heart and boils the blood.

As a self-taught artist, how do you feel about entering the art world with all its generalized elitism and “scene”?
I intuitively believe in what I am doing as an artist to be right. It’s a world that I am still learning about and from. As far as elitism and scene, I don’t care. It doesn’t change anything that I am currently doing. I have and will continue to make art for me and if it is appreciated beyond that, then it’s a blessing.

What genre of art speaks to you most for inspiration? 
Abstract art will always resonate with me on a private level because it is the first form of art I did aside from sketches. However, today, my tastes change and my eyes drift into a large spectrum of creativity. Everything has the potential to change my mind.

As a new artist to the Toronto scene, what do you think Toronto’s strong points are as an art hub and what is lacking?
Toronto has immense talent and a thriving artist community. I have been supported greatly by a large number of local artists and galleries and I try to reciprocate that back. As for what is lacking, I really can’t say yet. If anything, I would have to look at what is lacking in my own art first.

I would love to know what you think of the Bansky’s monthly stay in NYC and his “Better In than Out” work that is developing from it?
The curbside art sale was very interesting. I have enjoyed it. Who is Bansky?

The opening reception for UNKNOWN PLEASURES will be held on the evening of Saturday, October 26, from 6-9pm, with the artist in attendance. The exhibition will run Saturday, October 26, 2013 through Sunday November 17, 2013.

In addition to UNKNOWN PLEASURES opening, check out some key art openings and events that are definitely worth attending:

ART TORONTO 2013: Oct. 25th – 28th, 255 Front Street West.

Founded in 2000, Art Toronto is Canada’s premier modern and contemporary fine art fair, providing unique access to the Canadian art market. 

Derek Liddington, Modern Love at Daniel Faria Gallery, 188 St. Helens Avenue. Opening Night: October 25th, runs until November 23rd, 2013.



Have an amazing weekend and HEART ART!