ARTarium presents an unusual collection of pieces on Spadina Avenue.

More than dim sum cooking in Chinatown

New art gallery thriving in unlikely location

Many Torontonians pride themselves on being able to find the trendiest neighbourhoods, shops and restaurants. In short, to be able to find unique places within the city.

If you’re one of those people, you just might have to head down to Spadina Avenue to check out one of Toronto’s newest stores.

ARTarium, owned and operated by artist Sean Kulchar, is a gallery showcasing local talent.

“ARTarium is a place that artists can come together and benefit from exposure that they may not be able to achieve individually,” Kulchar said.

Kulchar amid some of the ARTarium collection.
Artist and gallery owner Kulchar amid the ARTarium collection. (Patrick Rail)

It’s easy to see how that could be the case. ARTarium is an unusual collection of varied pieces, with every medium imaginable represented. As Kulchar put it, “The broader the better.”

ARTarium certainly does accomplish that goal. Among the showcases are; metalworks, textile art, jewellery and even clothing.

“We want to introduce ourselves to community as a place that the everyday Torontonian can come, if they have a liking for art,” Kulchar said, continuing, “We can show them a lot of interesting things, that they may not find at a typical art gallery.”

Many come to Chinatown for the food rather than expecting to find a gallery. However, Kulchar noted that the spot was picked for a specific reason.

“Chinatown has always been an exciting place. Being a graduate of OCAD, it’s always been an area I’ve frequented,” Kulchar said. “The University of Toronto and OCAD are close by and the Art Gallery of Ontario is close by too,”

However, what sets ARTarium truly apart is the ability for customers to interact with Kulchar, who is always around, and the opportunity to learn from some of the artists themselves.

“We’re offering art classes and having some artists that work with us closely teach them,” Kulchar said.

That community feeling is further on display during Fun Zone Time, an event ARTarium hosts, featuring local artists, musicians and crafts. ARTarium

One of the biggest changes that Kulchar has noticed since opening in July is that customers keep coming back, bringing friends and creating a buzz over Spadina’s newest store.

“Since we’ve opened we’ve met a lot of really nice people and really talented people.”  Kulchar said. “It just keeps growing, so I think we’re on the right track.”