Friday, March 11, 2016

Artists' Date (Part I)

Last week, Nina-Marie posted about her "smart friend".   I have one too.  Actually, I have several, but M. W. is a new one I've found who's an art quilter, a painter...and a potential collaborator.  

Our Off the Wall Friday (March 4) was a trip up to Edmonton to see three art exhibits -- a real "Artists' Date" that excited, enthused and inspired us such that it's taken each of us a few days to corral the thoughts bouncing around our respective brains, and to calm down enough to focus on the work at hand!

I drove up the highway to Mary's in a fog -- literally -- to meet her for the trip farther north in The City.  Mary drove us out of the fog; we arrived and parked mid-morning, and walked over to our first venue: the Art Gallery of Alberta.

We were on our way in to see "Out of the Woods: Tom Thomson and the Group of Seven".  Now, M grew up in Northern Ontario and I in SW Quebec, and in our limited experience of the Group of Seven, their work was mainly done in Ontario and around the Canadian Shield.  Very "Eastern Canada" in flavour.  We were in for a surprise -- and a treat!

But first, a stop in the hallway which featured an abstract glass case of pieces created by staff members at the Gallery.  Here's a sample:

Naples Mustard (textiles/mixed media)
Stephanie Johnson - Staff Educator, AGA

Painted silk
Alice Banks - Guest Service Manager, AGA

The Tesla Coil Trio
Spyder Yardley-Jones, Preparator, AGA

Suitably primed for anything, we entered the Group's Exhibit

And one of the first attractions was this painting by Franklin Carmichael (1890 - 1945), who was known for his "exploration of Northern Ontario industry and landscape".

The Valley
Franklin Carmichael, 1921

This is probably somewhere in Ontario but for M and me, it was the Red Deer River valley...with a few extra hills in the background!  :-)

Then there was this one from J.E.H. MacDonald (1873-1932), which could be right off the Prairie:

June Clouds
J.E.H. MacDonald, 1914

I wondered aloud to M about what E.B. would say about this next work, one from A.Y. Jackson, which appears to have the focal point smack dab in the centre:

The House with the Blue Door: Gatineau
A.Y. Jackson, "before 1974"

From the main part of the exhibit we moved into a room that held sketchbook samples, drawings etc. -- work by the Group on paper, which we'd never seen before, never even imagined.  Alas, these drawings didn't lend themselves easily to photography -- at least not with my wee 'point-and-click' -- so you'll just have to visit the exhibit yourself to see them!  (It's on at the AGA through April 17.)

It was time for lunch.  After enjoying a very au courant meal at Zinc, the restaurant in the AGA lobby, we went the other way down the hall to see the last installment of "Charette Roulette" -- the FABRIC edition, with artists Yvonne Mullock and Teng Teng Chong.

This was a horse of a different colour altogether -- partly participatory art, its an installation of domestic objects based mainly on their evocation of "home" -- with the attendant socio-political commentary thereon...Here's a sample for your consideration...

The introduction to the exhibit
"yMtt" = the initials of the artists, painted & quilted

In the studio, participatory art and domesticity...

Visitors could hook on the burlap 

A string quilt - Yvonne Mullock
I'll let you guess
the reason behind the holes. :-)

Though none of this is my work, it's the best I can do this week.  I'm keeping up -- barely -- with my 15 x 15 Group piece, my SAQA Benefit Auction piece, the Japanese Taupe Quilt and my knitting...but with medical appointments and work at The Shop, my routine has been severely tested.

Linking this up with Nina Marie's Off the Wall Friday...and then off to have my biennial eye exam/new eye glasses appointment.  Stay tuned for the second installment of the Artists' Date...and have a great weekend!

P.S. Nina: hope you feel better soon!

No comments: