Char Da Silva & Kelly Wray own Milk Glass Co., an art gallery in Toronto.
KELLY: We’re roommates and business partners. We just work. We get along really well. We can hang out everyday for weeks on end and we don’t get sick of each other. It’s weird. We have a good working relationship. She’s the artist. I write.
CHAR: We like to call Milk Glass an ‘art space’ but essentially it’s an art gallery that specializes in custom framing. We also throw events. We’re open to different types of shows.
KELLY: We just want to make it a really inviting space. We want to always be changing. That’s how we are. We never stay stagnant. We always want something fresh that brings people in.
CHAR: We went back and forth with names and I said, ‘milk glass,’ and it stuck. We’ve been collecting milk glass for over a year now.
KELLY: We wanted a really white, clean gallery and ‘milk glass’ seemed to reflect that. Some people think we mean a glass of milk but it’s really this type of glass.
CHAR: The space used to be a law office with three separate rooms.
KELLY: These are new walls and new floors. We completely demolished and rebuilt the place. The guy here before was a hoarder. The basement was jam-packed full of stuff. I’ve never met a bigger hoarder and it was crazy going through his stuff and be like, ‘Whoa, how did you live this way? How do you have all this stuff still?’
CHAR: My dad builds homes so I had a bit of a construction background but the demolition was definitely a learning curve. Dealing with electrical wires…things go wrong. Our friend got electrocuted. I think we all got a few electric shocks.
KELLY: The whole process took way longer and way more money than we first thought.
CHAR: But now our personality is in it. It’s all us
KELLY: In the shell of the space, when there’s no art up, it’s still us. This is exactly where we want to be. The location is great. This neighbourhood is changing so much. When we saw the ‘for rent’ sign in the window with rainbow paper around it, we knew this was our space.
Char Da Silva & Kelly Wray, as told to Studio Beat
Photos by D.A. Cooper
Milk Glass Co. is located at 1247 Dundas Street West, Toronto.