Guillermo del Toro: At Home with Monsters
I recently happened to get married to my now lovely wife Hayley (who I still refer to as my girlfriend, I promise I will get out of the habit!) and we had a brilliant honeymoon spending 4 nights in Toronoto and 4 nights in New York. One of the highlights of the whole trip was in Toronto at the Art Gallery of Ontario, Guillermo del Toro: At Home with Monsters. We looked it up online before we left Glasgow and were pretty much sold on the first paragraph of the blurb about it!
"From the fantastic to the frightful, don’t miss this rare glimpse into the world of renowned filmmaker Guillermo del Toro and his cabinet of curiosities. Taking inspiration from del Toro’s extraordinary imagination, At Home with Monsters reveals his creative process through his personal collection of art, artefacts, books, and props, all culled from Bleak House, del Toro’s creative haven located in Los Angeles."
Both Hayley and I are huge fans of his film work from Hellboy through to Pan's Labyrinth and this did not disappoint, I have never seen such a huge collection of curiosities from paintings and images that inspire his curiosity of things that go bump in the night to replicas and props from his films (I nearly peed myself when I saw the Samaritan and Rasputin's Mech-Glove!).
There is a guided audio tour that is available through an app but we did not bring headphones with us (D'oh!) so we just went for the old-school read the signage and information about the pieces instead.
As you walk into the exhibition you are greeted with a wall that shows Guillermo del Toro's 'Bleak House' in all its confusion of cluttered oddity glory, would love to see it in real life.
Turn the corner after this and you are greeted by the freakiest thing in 'Pan's Labyrinth'... The Pale Man... This dude creeped me out so much.
From here on in let your imagination go as you wander through rooms filled with all you need to make sure that your mind will run rampant as you go around the displays. You could walk through it in a matter of minutes but we lost hours being immersed in Del Toro's creative muses. I'll let the pictures that I took do the talking, check out the gallery below.
As with all good exhibitions, you exit through the gift shop... We could have very easily bankrupted ourselves, but thankfully we found restraint and left with only one item, the At Home with Monsters book written by Del Toro himself, currently taking pride of place on our coffee table. Even if you don't make it to the exhibition this is a well worthwhile purchase to get a glimpse into his horror-geek-topia.
If you find yourself in Toronto before the 7th of January 2018 and like the occult, horror or are in anyway a bit of a geek... GO AND SEE THIS EXHIBITION!