19 February 2020

A Virtual Exhibition

We last posted about the wonderful works that will be on tour for 3 years as part of the two “Colour with a U” exhibitions.  As is always the case, there were many more entries than the exhibition space could accommodate. We decided that the other entries from Atlantic Canada deserve to be shown.  So here they are, with statements from the artists.  Enjoy!

Tree of Diversity by Kathy Tidswell w 22"x h36"

Tree of Diversity detail 

Kathy Tidswell, Artist Statement:  My mythical tree reflects the diversity in my community by using different colours and species to reflect races.  Look for an Olympic medalist, a Juno award winner, first player to break NHL colour barrier, founding president of Immigrant and Visible Minority Women in Canada and first First Nations Lieutenant Governor. 

MacKay Barns Imagined by Deb Plestid w42"x h25"

MacKay Barns detail
Deb Plestid Artist Statement: In the winter months, the MacKay barns are imposing, weathered, grey structures set against a steel grey sky on a snow covered field.  I imagine them in their early days boldly boasting their colour against a Spiddle Hill sunset. 

The largest barn was built near Spiddle Hill, Nova Scotia, circa 1834.  Owned by the MacKay family for seven generations, these silent sentinels are emblematic libraries - symbolic bearers of knowledge, memory, optimism and cooperation.  They bear witness to  innovative skills, industriousness and self-sufficiency; where form followed function and buildings were constructed from readily available timber and stone.

Unique Identities 2 by Regina Marzlin w24.5"by h41"

Unique Identities detail
Regina Marzlin, Artist StatementWe have the same basic fabric, our shared humanity.  But we all have different backgrounds, our origins, our experiences, memories, different conditions growing up, etc.. We all have our own colour, that which makes us unique. Some of us stand more out than others, some are more subtle, some blend in. Some are a bit frayed around the edges. But we are all unique individuals, with different outlooks and our own story. To me, this piece celebrates the diverse identities that make up our society and enrich our lives. The more colours the better.

Unravelling, Unliveable, eXtinction. It's Up to Us
by Susan Lilley  w38" x h41"
Unravelling, Unliveable, eXtinction. 
It's Up to Us detail
Susan Lilley, Artist Statement: Canada's diverse ecosystems and rich biodiversity are under attack. This piece illustrates the global climate crisis, from melting polar ice caps to raging equatorial fires. As one scientific report after another reveals ever stronger evidence, people around the world are taking to the streets demanding action. This growing popular movement is conveyed by both the bold, coloured letters and the more subtle, quilted words of Swedish activist Greta Thunberg.

As a Raging Granny I’ve been in many climate marches, singing protest songs about the issue. The song that inspired this quilt ends with the words: It’s really Up to all of Us: You and You and You. Our response to climate change must include everyone. There’s no planet B!

Reflections on Mortality by Audrey Feltham w37"x h25"
Reflections on Mortality detail
Audrey Feltham Artist Statement: This art quilt is one in a series of small pieces that I am currently working on.  Thematically they explore the theme of quotidian, the everyday objects and practices that make up the fabric of our cultural existence.  The imagery in this piece comes from artifacts from my late Mother’s home which she left at the age of 95.  She then moved to a retirement home.  The artwork covers a span of her life from 1930  when she was a teenager to her last days.  On the one hand it is a celebration of her life, reflected in the choice of color and tone in the centre square, but also a documentation of what it meant for her to grow old and dependent.  The xis rectangles that occupy the upper and lower sashing are from an autograph diary dated 1930.

Necessity of Survival by Audrey Feltham w 35" x h 29"

Necessity of Survival detail
AudreyFeltham Artist Statement:  This small art quilt is part of a series of smaller works that I am currently completing.  Thematically they deal with quotidian, the everyday objects and traditions that are the underlying fabric of a particular culture determined by place and time.  The 12 center images of the quilt are screen prints of a condiment jar that belonged to my deceased Mother.   It was used in our house for horse radish, a condiment that was inexpensive since it literally grew wild on our farm.  Mom harvested it, ground it and made her own horseradish.  Our meals were simple and “extras” like condiments relatively unheard of unless they could be produced for literally nothing.  The detail is of a hand embroidered decal of Amorica Rusticana (horseradish).  Text and printed image of the horseradish adorn the side panels.  Text reads:  “AMORICA RUSTICANA.  The sharp edge /Of bored days/Made inconsequential/By repetition/

U R Colour by Anne Morrell Robinson w50"x h55"

U R Colour detail

Anne Morrell Robinson Artist Statement: I never understood why some people are called "coloured" when we all are made up of many colours on the inside and outside. We should celebrate all the colours that make this world a beautiful place.

Canadiana Suite: A Tribute to Oscar Peterson 
by Cathy Drummond w28"x h24"

Canadiana Suite: A Tribute to 
Oscar Peterson detail
Cathy Drummond Artist Statement: Canada’s huge, diverse landscape molds our national character. This relationship of landscape to culture is expressed beautifully by Oscar Peterson’s Canadiana Suite, written for Canada’s centennial. The music expresses happy national pride, the variations of landscape and people in each region, yet also expresses our commonality. 

The ovals in the piece represent the 8 parts of the Suite:  Ballad to the East, Laurentide Waltz, Place St. Henri, Hogtown Blues, Blues of the Prairies, Wheatland, March Past, and Land of Misty Giants. 

The Pond by Helen Blanchette w36"xh36"

Helene Blanchette Artist Statement: My world is deeply coloured by the land and the natural world where I live in the Highlands of Cape Breton. It is this land, steeped in beauty and dramatic, changing moods, that informs my every day and imbues my art. With this piece I have tried to capture the many changing moods of the Highlands.  

Picnic on the Mound by Helene Blanchette w20"xh20"
Helene Blanchette Artist Statement: I am a Folk Artist from Nova Scotia and my world is deeply coloured by the land where I live in the Highlands of Cape Breton. It informs my everyday, seeps into my soul, and frames my art.  It is from this land that I find my stories. It is a vast land that tolerates our humanity if only to return to itself once we have passed through. This is a picture of me and my husband having a little picnic in our yard. 

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