Sunday, September 16, 2012

The First Artist of the Week

As you see, Whapmagoostui is my new home and for a time, you will see posts that celebrate the young people of this community. The students I most closely work with have just entered high school and I know one of their favourite subjects is visual arts. One of my joys is to share that love of art with them, and so I will introduce you to the First Artist of the Week, a young First Nations Cree teenager named Beyoncé Fleming-George who was the first to finish her circular design in primary and secondary colours and moved also to be the first to complete her own personal colour wheel. She enjoys being first and is very proud of her accomplishments in visual arts! Bravo, Beyoncé!!

Sunday, September 9, 2012

Secondary 1 Students at Badabin School, Whapmagoostui

On August 17, the DC10 Creebec plane landed at the last stop of their run, Whapmagoostui and I was on it heading for a school year at Badabin School. Above is the view from my kitchen window as I looked toward the SW that very first evening of my arrival to see a lovely welcoming rainbow.

Here you see a brand new class of high school students ready to learn English as a Second language, Mathematics, History, Geography, and of course, Art. Here in this blog, I plan to show all of you their visual art experiences, and  my own as I make my way through the winter in this fly-in community on the shoreline of Hudson's Bay and the mouth of the Great Whale River in Quebec.

I am looking forward to their first art project, circle designs in primary and secondary colours, that being my second post next week. Today, let me introduce you to my new class that I am very proud of:
(back row left to right) Nicolas Petagumskum, Destiny-Hope Masty, Casey Kawapit, Marcus Petagumskum, Braedan Wynne, Adam Masty Shem, Wesley George, Miracle Masty, (middle row left to right) Georgia-Lynn Sandy, Chriystal Masty-Snowboy,  Sachakin Masty (front row left to right) Autumn Sandy, Beyoncé Fleming-George

Sunday, August 12, 2012

Bringing Artists Together in the Pontiac

On August 8,9 I travelled to Valerie Bridgeman's home near Shawville, PQ where eight talented artists gathered to share the medium of encaustic. Val has a lovely studio that offered enough space for all of us to expand our abilities in this ancient medium that has taken on some very contemporary approaches.

As you will see in these illustrations, there was such a wide range of styles these artists brought to the workshop. Val is an experienced printmaker along with her daughter-in-law, Sarah and they explored subtle use of colour with layers of collage and textures. Carol and her daughter, Danuda came along. Carol Noel, a well known photographer and graphic designer explored an integration of her photography with encaustic. Danuda had some fascinating papers to create some Asian influenced collages. Carolyn came to the workshop with her experience in fused glass to create brightly coloured landscapes. Kay enjoyed taking an existed image and transforming it to new textural effects. Cher delved into relief paintings in encaustic using well composed textures layering and building to create amazing works. Sally used natural objects from the landscape to recreate the mood on wood panel.

Here are some of the works completed in the two days we were together making art. I was very pleased to spend the time in Valerie Bridgeman's beautiful studio bringing the medium to a new group of creative artists that I am sure will develop exciting new techniques of their own in the coming fall season.

Sunday, August 5, 2012

Enkostikos I,II Workshop in Shawville, Quebec

I hope your enjoyed the Illuminé Show that was last Thursday, August 2 at Centrepointe Theatre. Many circulated on both levels of the lobby of the theatre, drank wine, chatted with friends, and remarked on the works. Thank you for coming, and if you weren't able, try to make it before August 22.

Next week I'll be heading up to Shawville to lead an encaustic workshop lasting two days at a friend's studio space. The studio is nestled in the large pines so familiar to the Pontiac, and the atmosphere is truly inspiring. The workshop is August 8,9 next week, and there is one space left to fill. If you're interested, please send me a note at

Sunday, July 29, 2012

Illuminé Show at Centrepointe Theatre

This header is one work in a series you will find called 'Old Florida VI' and I am looking forward to seeing YOU at Ben Franklin Place, Centrepointe Theatre, Nepean next Thursday evening from 6-8 p.m. Thiis series is on the main floor while the show extends to the second floor upstairs. There are 37 works in all and represents the past two years in this medium of encaustic.

Stay the evening, enjoy the wine, foods, friends and family who will be there!

Friday, June 22, 2012

Juried Show for Arts and the Arch

This June the Frontenac Arch Biosphere Network, an organization that promotes and celebrates this unique region of Ontario, hosted an art show at the Marianne Van Silfhout Gallery in Brockville. It was a juried show and many artists who vacation or live in the Frontenac area were invited to submit works of art.
I sent this piece that is a four part panel in encaustic that is 72"x24" and is intended to immerse you in the Frontenac Park where I have canoe camped. The fall colours invite you to share the experience.
I won an Honourable Mention at the opening on Friday, June 7 this month. It was a privelege to share the stage with other artists who exhibit their love for this region as well. Here is a look at the piece.

It will also be on view at my show that will be held July 27 to August 22, 2012. Reception will be held on August 2 from 6-8 p.m. I look forward to seeing you there if you live in this region.

Credits for the Works:
Frontenac I,II,III,IV          encaustic on board                72"x24"                   $1500. + hst.

Wednesday, April 11, 2012

The Old Florida

Just this March I visited my brother's family in Sarasota, Florida and spent a few days at Longboat Keys where the Gulf Stream waters gently ebb onto clean white sands. Dennis has a lovely condo that steps directly onto the gulf sands and the ocean. Visiting for the first time, I took that as a regular convenience most condos offered until I began to speak to an elderly couple that vacationed in the next unit.  They explained that this condo was quite unique, that it reflected 'the Old Florida' where probably back in the early twentieth century before so much luxurious highrise development, most vacationers could easily find shoreline getaways at an affordable cost. This exquisite condo is called The Diplomat Beach Resort directly on the Gulf of Mexico.

Contact Dennis Girard if you'd like to plan your next escape: 1 941 809 0041.

Here I'm presenting to you the first in a series of beach scenes from what I titled as Old Florida. As you enjoy the crocuses and daffodils of early spring of Canada, feast your eyes on these royal terns and sandpipers that made this gulf shoreline their home.
While you're lingering on my blog, have a look at the Celebration of Spring series I painted in 2011. And Happy Spring!

Credits for Old Florida series:

Longboat Keys 1-9, Old Florida                   encaustic on board; 16" x 20"           $400.+HST unframed

Tuesday, April 3, 2012

Faded Poets, Forests and the Frontenac

Recently in my winter reading, a friend passed along to me a biography of Gwendolyn MacEwen: The Shadow Maker and I became struck by the intensity of this young Canadian poet whose contemporaries were Margaret Atwood and Sylvia Tyson to name a few. John Reeves also a contemporary Toronto photographer had photographed her as a young woman of thirty-two with her haunting Egyptian like kohl eyes and tiny pursed lips in a frankly intelligent gaze.

This encaustic piece is a mixed media photo transfer taken from the John Reeves photograph of Gwendolyn in Toronto.  She is surrounded by symbols connected to events in her life, her lovers and her poetry. She died tragically at 48 years old from chronic alcoholism.

Sure to follow will be another portrait this time inspired by The Life of Margaret Laurence. I found it very intrigueing to explore the artist through portraiture.

Just last week I sent off to the Frontenac Arch Biosphere: Call to Artists, a four part encaustic work inspired by Frontenac Park in the heart of this unique region. This is the 10th anniversary of the Frontenac Arch Biosphere and a juried show will take place June 8-21 at the Marianne Van Silfhout Gallery of St. Lawrence College, Brockville. The Opening reception on June 8 will launch numerous 2012 anniversary festivities. Hope you can attend.

The third work you see here is a personal narrative about an exciting canoe trip my husband Bob and I took down the Rideau Canal to Kingston in 2005. We brought our camping gear and enjoyed staying overnight at campsites at the locks. It was a humble but challenging way to see the Canal on the 200th anniversay of its construction by Colonel By. I make reference through photo transfer of Kayaking for Cancer; celebrating my birthday at Opinegon; and of course, the trusty cargo canoe.

Tribute to Gwendolyn MacEwen                12" x 16"                    encaustic, mixed media        $400. & HST

Historical Journey through the Frontenac        24" x 36"        encaustic, mixed media         $800. &HST

Frontenac I, II, IV, IV                                  24" x 48"                   encaustic                             $1800. &HST

Sunday, February 26, 2012

Drive By Shootings

Our contemporary society seems always in a deliriously rushed state. As we clutch our smartphones and attempt to squeeze an impossibly busy set of events into the day, we are even rushed when we attempt to relax.
This post takes me that place that we offer for ourselves when we seek repose and renewal. As visual artists, we are also caught up in that societal frenzy to try and capture some creative inspiration in a cramped couple of hours.
Clutching a camera in hand, a friend, also an artist, sought an escape to the Gatineau Hills to view that last of the glories of our colourful Canadian autumn from the blurred vantage point of the car window.
Streams of reflected colours, sharp accents of light and blurred shapes are captured by the lens. Even leafy shapes are pulled and distorted to the edges of the window.

As I caught these images, I felt that they were also a metaphor for our hurried lives. They are 'Drive By Shootings', an attempt to grasp at beauty that is fleeting, working against time. Even at the end of the day and the end of the season, we clutch for another moment to appreciate in our rush of life.

Credits for Drive By Shootings

Drive By Shootings IV          encaustic on board unframed             24" x 24"                $500.  
Drive by Shootings III           encaustic on board unframed              18" x 24"               $400.
Drive By Shootings I             encaustic on board unframed             24" x 24"                $500.
Drive By Shootings II            encaustic on board unframed             24" x 24"                $500.

Monday, February 6, 2012

The Whitehorse, Yukon Series

Let me introduce you to recent encaustic works from a journey I took to Whitehorse in February of last year 2011. With my daughter Camille, 29 on a work related trip, and my camera in tow, we arrived in Whitehorse and made our way to Kluane National Park and the majestic foothills of one of the mountain chains in that vast landscape. A week later we travelled further north to Dawson City and along the route saw some inspiring vistas. It is always formidable to take on the challenge of capturing images of the Canadian west.

I well understand Paul Cezanne's obsession with Mount St. Lazare, as he returned to capture it again and again. The mountain became his muse. A landscape can take its grip upon you as you try to capture its monumentality. 

I'm so pleased to bring these fresh vivid forms to you. 

Credit Information:

Kluane Yukon, 2011; 18"x 24" encaustic on board                     $500.

Yukon Landscape 1; 18"x 24" encaustic on board                       $400.

View to the Cliffs, 2011; 18" x 24" encaustic on board               $400.

Lake Labarge, 2011; 18" x 24" encaustic on board                      $500.

Friday, January 27, 2012

Glimpsing Through Shell Ice

As I stood before these chards of ice with various natural objects lying inside them, I became entranced by their luminosity. With the medium of encaustic on board I began to represent this fragile, transitory slates of nature.

The resulting work now make up a series of four 12" x 12" boards that have become mixed media pieces containing what I saw that day, luminous areas of lines, shapes, pieces of dried leaves, seeds. I also embedded the haiku Bob created to commemorate these delicate formations. I hope you enjoy this collaborative work as well. It claims as its title: 

Glimpsing through Shell Ice

glimpsing through shell ice
assuming aqua spirit
grey trunks nod, yearning