March 1, 2011 Kleinburg, ON

The Toronto Italian community’s beloved

Columbus Centre will welcome an outstanding collection of works from the McMichael Canadian Art Collection and works by artists of Italian heritage who have been inspired by the Group of Seven. This pairing of some of Canada’s most important art will be unveiled at an exclusive cocktail reception that will be held Tuesday, March 29, 2011 at the Lawrence Avenue facility with food prepared by the renowned Ristorante Boccaccio.

“Enthusiasm shown by the Columbus Centre and by the leaders of our Canadian-Italian

community has been spectacular. This McMichael/Columbus Centre partnership helps us

understand Canada better by appreciating this country’s most renowned interpreters of the land,”

said co-chair Lori Abittan, President and CEO of Multimedia Nova Corporation. Ms. Abittan shares leadership for the event with Ralph Chiodo, founder of Active Green + Ross, and McMichael Board of Trustees Vice-Chair, Patrick Gossage. Honourary Patrons for the Inspired by Canada event include: Senator Con Di Nino, Vaughan Mayor Maurizio Bevilacqua, Toronto Mayor Rob Ford, Federal Minister Julian Fantino and retired Justice of the Supreme Court, the Honourable Frank Iacobucci.

“This year’s reception, in support of the McMichael Canadian Art Collection

and the Joseph D. Carrier Art Gallery/Columbus Centre, will give back to

two worthy causes … in a big way. The ‘who’s who’ from our community is

helping raise awareness and funds in support of Canadian art,” says Active

Green + Ross’s Ralph Chiodo. “This spectacular event will showcase some of

this country’s best artists who have channeled the spirit of the great

outdoors through their beautifully painted masterpieces.”

The Inspired by Canada reception and exhibition will be held from 6:30 p.m. to 10:00 p.m. (opening remarks at 7:30 p.m.) on March 29 at the Joseph D. Carrier Art Gallery/Columbus Centre located at 901 Lawrence Avenue West. This one-night-only fundraiser is an exclusive and intimate gathering with only 400 tickets available!

The cocktail party’s special multi-level exhibition will explore many works painted by members of the renowned Group of Seven in juxtaposition to works by contemporary Italian-Canadian artists including Tony Bianco, Tracy Thomson Colero (great-grandniece of Tom Thomson), Salvatore Gallo, Sam Paonessa, Giuseppe Pivetta, Joseph Catalano, Germinio Politi, and the late Albert Chiarandini, who painted with members of the Group of Seven.

In addition to the fine art, Ristorante Boccaccio will be serving epicurean delights throughout the evening. There will be a Fine Scotch and Grappa Bar (courtesy of Via Allegro Ristorante) and a gourmet Cheese Station (courtesy of The Cheese Boutique).

Tickets are available for $185 each or as a Patron’s Package of ten tickets

for $1,850.

Presenting Sponsor:

BMO Financial Group

Event Sponsors to-date include:

Active Green + Ross

IC Savings

Via Allegro Ristorante

Pristine Printing

The Cheese Boutique

Media Support Generously Contributed by:

Multimedia Nova Corporation

Tax receipts will be issued to the maximum allowable amount. The Inspired

by Canada event is a joint fundraising event with the net proceeds to be

shared between the McMichael Canadian Art Collection and the Joseph D.

Carrier Art Gallery/Columbus Centre.

About the Galleries:

The Joseph D. Carrier Art Gallery, located in Columbus Centre, is part of

the Villa Charities family of community-based, charitable non-profit

organizations. The Joseph D. Carrier Art Gallery receives no ongoing public

funding and relies on private sector donors, sponsorships and

income-generating activities.

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 a.m. to 4:00


Tickets are available for $185 per person. To purchase tickets contact the

McMichael gallery at 905.893.1121 ext. 2207 or email


For further information or images, contact:

Michelle Kortinen, Communications Coordinator

McMichael Canadian Art Collection

905.893.1121 ext. 2210