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Villa Charities celebrates 40th Anniversary of Columbus Centre with “40 Under Forty”

The milestone anniversary will be commemorated with two special exhibitions in the Joseph D. Carrier Art Gallery.

TORONTO, September 29, 2020 – In celebration of the 40th anniversary of the Columbus Centre, Villa Charities Inc. (VCI) presents two special art exhibitions in the Joseph D. Carrier Art Gallery. These exhibitions will highlight the history of the Columbus Centre as well as showcase artists who represent the present day and future of the visual arts community. Both exhibitions will be on display from October 1 to November 21, 2020.

“40 Under Forty” is an exhibition of 40 artists under the age of forty, all of whom were born after the Italian community centre was established. It will give the audience a look at what young artists are doing during a world-wide pandemic, while society simultaneously experiences rapid and vital cultural and political growth.

“As we mark the 40th anniversary of the Columbus Centre, we celebrate with this exhibition the spirit of inclusion, hope for the future, and love for the arts that lies at the foundation of this organization,” says Emanuele Lepri, Executive Director of Cultural Programming, Villa Charities Inc. “We are delighted to feature this small army of wonderful young artists in our Joseph D. Carrier Art Gallery.  The “40 Under Forty” exhibition rises high above this year’s global fears capturing the vibrancy, diversity and quality of Ontario’s visual arts scene.”

To complement the “40 Under Forty” exhibition, accomplished multimedia artist and VCI Artist in Residence Franco Berti has created a special anniversary collage, commissioned by the organization. The collage was produced to serve as a memorable and welcoming symbol for the Columbus Centre community at large; celebrating the past while engaging with the present time. Berti uses collage, photography, performance, installation, and public and social works to transcend the notion of identity, nationality and cultural identification.

The Columbus Centre, part of the Villa Charities organization, has served as a vibrant community centre since its official opening on October 10, 1980, where people can enjoy the richness of Italian culture within a Canadian setting. Today, the Columbus Centre remains a major hub for the GTA’s Italian-Canadian community and a popular meeting place frequented by more than 150,000 visitors every year. Patrons of all ages visit the Columbus Centre for dance, visual arts, music, Italian language and children’s camps; view art exhibitions at the Joseph D. Carrier Art Gallery; attend cultural events and programming; use child care services; and participate in a wide range of athletic, aquatic and wellness programs at its expansive athletic club.

Throughout its history, the Joseph D. Carrier Art Gallery has exhibited a broad range of art and artists and continues its commitment with “40 Under Forty” as well as Berti’s collage.

“From faces to figures, still life to action painting, landscape to seascape, the themes and disciplines are as diverse as the artists themselves,” says Curator, Flavio Belli. “These 40 artists have been selected from a much larger group of artists whose work I have reviewed. I hope it is a comprehensive survey that suggests the breadth of contemporary art and that it introduces talented visual artists who are making a statement in the current art scene to new audiences.”

The 40 artists are:
Ibrahim Abusitta, Cruz T. Anderson, Houssam Alloum, Christian Applegate, Franco Berti, Lucas Biagini, Kieran Brent, Gizem Candan, Jasmine Canaviri, Chen Cao, Daniel Cardoso, Peter Chan, Danielle Clarke, Salvatore G. F. Crimi, Katherine Curci, Courtney Downman, Lana Filippone, Hannan Fayad, Alice Gong, Kim Hayung, Karyn Ho, Miles Ingrassia, Omeed Jasar, Jaymie Lathem, Kima Lenaghan, Jean-Luc Lindsay, Megan MacDonald, Gabbi Maria, Colt Nicastro, Tristram Pinney, Hana Hozhabr Pour, Devon Pryce, Michael Rachlis, Steven Restagno, Anthony Ricciardi, Miriam Rosenthal, Angela Snieder, Eleni Tsatsanis, Isabella Varrasso, Shaheer Zazai

Columbus Centre patrons and the community at large are invited to celebrate the 40th anniversary of the community centre by experiencing these memorable exhibitions.

To ensure physical distancing and in compliance with capacity limits for indoor events, the official opening night reception will be hosted as four separate events; ten artists will be in attendance for each opening.

Thursday, October 1, 5:30 – 7:00pm & 7:30 – 9:00pm
Friday, October 2, 5:30 – 7:00pm & 7:30 – 9:00pm
RSVP is required in advance to reserve your spot. To RSVP, visit villacharities.com/CC40
For more information, email cultural@villacharities.com or call 416-789-7011 ext. 248

“40 Under Forty”
October 1 – November 21, 2020
Location: Upper and Lower Gallery
Joseph D. Carrier Art Gallery, Columbus Centre

40th Anniversary Collage
October 1 – November 21, 2020
Location: 
Lobby, Columbus Centre

Gallery Hours:  If you wish to visit the exhibitions, please contact the Arts & Culture Coordinator directly at 416-789-7011 ext. 248 or cultural@villacharities.com for gallery hours. Entry is free. COVID-19 protocols are in place to ensure the safety of all visitors. Masks or face coverings are mandatory in all indoor public spaces under City of Toronto by-law no. 541-2020.

About Villa Charities Inc.
Villa Charities Inc. (VCI) is a registered charity and non-profit organization that enriches lives through experiences and services that honour Italian culture and heritage. For almost 50 years across the GTA, Villa Charities has provided cultural and educational programs and supported culturally sensitive long-term care and independent living apartments for seniors. VCI fulfills their mandate through a broad range of activities, services and facilities, both directly and in conjunction with its affiliates and independent Italian organizations. Affiliates include Columbus Centre and Joseph D. Carrier Art Gallery; Villa Colombo Homes for the Aged Inc. in Toronto; Villa Colombo Seniors Centre (Vaughan) Inc. Di Poce Centre; and Italian Canadian Benevolent Seniors Apartments Corporation/Casa Abruzzo Benevolent Corporation with apartments for independent seniors (Caboto Terrace, Casa Del Zotto and Casa Abruzzo). Each of these organizations is an integral part of the Villa Charities family with separate legal status and its own governance Board. For more information visit villacharities.com.

About Columbus Centre
Since its opening in 1980, the Columbus Centre has served as a vibrant community centre where people can enjoy the richness of an Italian culture within a Canadian setting. Today, the Columbus Centre remains a major hub for the GTA’s Italian-Canadian community and a popular meeting place frequented by more than 150,000 visitors every year.  Patrons of all ages visit the Columbus Centre daily for dance, visual arts, music, and culinary programs; view art exhibitions at the Joseph D. Carrier Art Gallery; attend cultural events and programming; and participate in a wide range of athletic, aquatics and wellness programs at our expansive athletic club. For more information visit villacharities.com

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For further information, please contact:
Jessica Patriquin
MAVERICK
416-640-5525 Ext. 230
jessicap@wearemaverick.com

Kathleen Sloan, CM
Director, Marketing and Communications, Villa Charities Inc.
416-789-7011 Ext. 309
ksloan@villacharities.com

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