Colour: A Personal Response – Sarah McLaren & Lesley Turner
September 18th to 24th, 2017 Tulista Art Gallery, Sidney January 12 to February 10, 2017 Place des Arts, Coquitlam
Lesley’s response to each colour’s vibration is expressed through line and value explorations. Sarah’s monochromatic colour interpretation of iconic paintings are her emotional responses to the works.
Salt Spring National Art Prize (SSNAP) Finalist Exhibition
Mahon Hall, Ganges, Salt Spring Island
September 22 to October 21.
SDA member Joanna Rogers was one of 49 finalists for this bi-annual award . Her wrok was selected by a jury (David Garneau, Denis Longchamps and Naomi Potter) from 2160 submissions from 1227 Canadian artists.
In Memorium or The Wake of Progress explores ideas of obsolescence and the waste produced by the consumption of the new. The panels were hand woven using cassette tape and mercerized cotton in an overshot pattern. The form was inspired by a suit of armour from the Kiribati people of Micronesia on display in the Museum of Anthropology in Vancouver. Cassettes are a medium of the past, overshot patterns are out of fashion, the Kiribati people no longer create their armour. Tempus fugit.
Methinks I should know you: Jennifer Love
October 5 to 29
Gibsons Public Art Gallery, Gibsons
An exhibition of abstract textile paintings prompted by a dialogue around how memories and their gradual disappearance impact on one’s concept of self, and how one perceives and connects with someone who is gradually losing her memory. A meditation on issues of memory and selfhood, illness and sometimes, recovery.
In Ruins: Three Artists Explore the Decline and Fall of Civilization
November 8, 2017 to January 15, 2018
Il Museo, Vancouver
A multimedia exhibition featuring
Borrowing the concept of life cycles from the natural world, as well as Edward Gibbon’s narrative on the fall of Roman Empire, three artists (Catherine Nicholls, textiles; Ally Nichols, photography; Elizabeth Harris, ceramics) engage in a multimedia exploration on the nature of decline in the environment and in civilization.
June 9 to July 15 CityScape Gallery, North Vancouver
Curated by Stephanie Symns and Amanda Wood An exhibition of textile works addressing the theme of handcraft and digital technology. Artists: Amanda McCavour, Lucy Poskitt, Michelle Sirois Silver, Stephanie Symns, Amanda Wood
Beyond the Basics: Jackie Abrams and Friends
June 17 to July 23 FibreWorks Gallery, Madeira Park
A juried exhibition of basketry by students of renowned basketry artist, Jackie Abrams of Vermont. A selection of Jackie’s baskets were also displayed.
BC Artists included: Dorothy Cross, Anni Hunt, Ellen Luckow, Julie Pongrac and Pia Sillem.
An SDA Award of Excellence was awarded to Jane Whitten for her piece, Anemone.
Vancouver Island Surface Design Association
June 28 to July 9 Coast Collective Gallery, Colwood
July 7 to 29
Peace Gallery North, Fort St. John
The exhibition of featured the work of Elizabeth Harris, along with Catherine Nicholls, Ally Nichols and Curtis Beach. The theme was inspired by part of the Ian Tyson song Four Strong Winds:
Four strong winds that blow lonely Seven seas that run high All those things that don’t change come what may But our good times are all gone And I’m bound for moving on I’ll look for you if I’m ever back this way
July 27 to August 26 Seymour Art Gallery, North Vancouver
Innovation and the transformation of waste materials are at the core of this exhibition, which included five hand-hooked art pieces by Michelle Sirois Silver and two installations by Katherine Soucie. Bound by a shared passion for fibre as a medium, the artists also share a philosophy that challenges our notions about garbage.
Full Circle: 10th Anniversary Celebration
July 29 to September 10 FibreWorks Gallery, Madeira Park
Celebrating 10 years of FibreWorks this group exhibition included work by many artists who have exhibited at FibreWorks over the last decade. On the eve of their retirement, the opening reception was a joyous celebration of Yvonne and Reg Stowell’s extraordinary contribution to the artistic community of the Sunshine Coast and beyond.
August 1 to 31 ArtSpring, Salt Spring Island
Work by Island textile artists: Bobbi Janowiak, Gill Kidd, Danielle Manners, Elna Gravelle, Susan Painter, Karen Tottman, Karen Selk, Linda Counsell, and Joanie Paterson.
50 Canadian Things
August 2 to 20 Sunshine Coast Arts Centre, Sechelt
An exhibition of work inspired by Jane Urquhart’s book, A Number of Things, and in celebration of Canada’s 150th anniversary since Confederation. SDA members included in the exhibition: Jennifer Love, Nell Burns, Connie Chapman and Pat Crucil.
archiTEXTURE: Hard Edges in a Soft Medium
August 7 to October 7 Anvil Centre, New Westminster
Four New Westminster artists (Terry Aske, Judy Villett, Mardell Rampton and Janet Archibald) explored the possibilities of capturing the gleam of glass, the sharp edges of metal, and the coolness of tile and stone with fabric.
Slow Clothes: the Art of Fashion
August 9 Harmony Arts, West Vancouver
Fifth annual juried one-of-a-kind/limited-edition fashion show featured clothing and accessories by more than 25 artists including SDA members Dawn M Russell (Della Terra Designs) and Anni Hunt.
August 11 to 13 Sea Star Estate Farms and Vineyards, Pender Island
Monica Bennett, Sandy Shreve and Nancy Silo were very pleased to present their second annual exhibition at Pender Island’s beautiful winery Sea Star Estate in August. The show featured new works in handmade felt, photo art/paintings and ceramics. The artists included a new section of collaborative art in this year’s show, where each artist made a beginning piece and the other two added to it in their own medium. This was a very well received addition and was a successful fundraiser for art supplies for Pender’s school.
A Hundred Thousand Threads III
August 21 to 27 ArtSea Gallery, Sidney
FibreAti is a group of experimental fibre artists who formed in 2004 and currently includes SDA members Dale MacEwen, and Judi MacLeod.
March 23 to May 4
Craft Council of BC Gallery, Granville Island, Vancouver
Thirteen to Zero is not a sports score–it is an exploration, by textile artist Dawn Michelle Russell, of waste reduction — moving from minimal waste, a thirteen fabric scrap garment design to no waste, an enhanced commitment to mindful, zero waste design.
Cherry Blossoms: A Textile Translation 2017
March 21 to April 9
Silk Purse Arts Centre, West Vancouver
The 9th annual exhibition of textile art inspired by the cherry blossom.
Whisperings: a celebration of the forest world.
March 24 to April 22
Place des Arts, Coquitlam
What hearest thou? Whisperings, murmurings, now loud, now soft, the trees talking, squeakings, groanings, sometimes tree trunks chafing against each other, the saucy screech of a blue jay, the kingfisher’s clatter and the chatter of an occasional squirrel, resenting my intrusion.
These words by eminent artist Emily Carr have inspired Anni Huntand Catherine Nicholls to explore the wonders of the West Coast rain forest. In this all new exhibition these textile artists present their own observations and feelings for the stunning forest landscape. Using natural materials as inspiration and media has lead these two to listen carefully to the “whisperings” of the forest and record what they hear.
Excursions and Returns: Meditations on Making, and the Maker
April 1 to 30, 2017 FibreWorks Gallery, Madeira Park
Jennifer Love @ The Kube
The Kube Studios, Gibsons BC
Textile paintings, and painted paper-covered journals.
Current Threads 2017
April 15 to 30, 2017
Ladysmith Waterfront Gallery, Ladysmith
Contemporary Textile Art by Members of the Vancouver Island Surface Design Association.
cocoon: an exhibition of thoughtful objects for the home
May 4 to 23 Silk Weaving Studio, Granville Island, Vancouver
Featured the work of Kate Barber, Kayo Benson, Anik Choiniere, Vennie Chou, Stu Coleman, Jackie Frioud, Carly Hulse, Cathy Joyce, Ellen Kocher, Amanda Langerak, Chris Montgomery, Darlene Ochotta, Ed Pretty, Morija Reeb, Diana Sanderson, Jo Skinner, Ana Sousa, Hiroko Takayo and Amanda Wood.
This year for our group invitational show our focus changed from wearables to work for the home inspiring us in a different direction.
Textures of Land and Sea
May 4 to June 4 Circle Craft Gallery, Granville Island, Vancouver
Loose Threads: Sunshine Coast Surface Design Association
May 6 to June 11 FibreWorks Gallery, Madeira Park
Participating artists include: Marie Barry, Nell Burns, Lesley Campbell, Connie Chapman, Penny Connell, Dorothy Cross, Pat Crucil, Lois MacArthur, Anne Gregory, Jennifer Love, Sharon Roye, Yvonne Stowell, Maureen Sugrue, and Patt Wilson. Congratulations to Nell Burns who was the winner of the SDA Award of Excellence for her piece, “Sea Spicules”. Stitched silk thread, free motion embroidery.
May 11 to June 22 Craft Council of BC, Granville Island, Vancouver
Three textile artists (Eleanor Hannan, Barbara Heller and Bettina Matzkuhn) in collaboration with four members of Nature Vancouver explore issues of cultural and natural destruction, and the consumption, restoration, and protection of nature. In a spirit of experimentation that has involved risk, research and steep learning curves, all participants have gained – and are pleased to share – new understandings of the natural world.
(in)finite: spiritual conversations in cloth
May 25 to June 4 Christ Church Cathedral, Vancouver
Edge of the Forest is an exciting exhibition of textile art by 53 artists from across Canada who are members of the Surface Design Association. This juried exhibition of textile art features weaving, felt work, quilts, printing, machine and hand stitched work and other techniques that give structure, pattern and colour to textile. The exhibition is designed to travel across Canada to provide Canadian artists an opportunity to showcase their work in local venues. It aims to introduce the viewers to the variety and beauty of textile art, as well as to inspire other artists to explore these art forms.
Our travelling exhibition “mended” has completed it’s tour! thanks to all the artists for their participation in the exhibition, the show has been seen and enjoyed by hundreds of people and none of that would be possible without their hard work!
Catherine Nicholls did an Artist in Residence while mended was at Place des Arts in Coquitlam. (It was sponsored by Westminster Savings and Catherine was paid). School kids (a range of ages and types of schools) came and we reached 275+ kids , 18 seniors and 22 volunteers from Place des Arts in hands on, 90 minute workshops. Students created a little book with a “mended” cover and a reference insert ( comic book style) of mending stitches.
Textile artists inspired by mosaic artist, Lilian Broca
On March 8, International Women’s Day, Vancouver area SDA members met at the Italian Cultural Centre to host a talk and exhibition tour of Heroine of a Thousand Pieces by internationally known mosaic artist, Lilian Broca.
Created out of closely fitting hand-cut smalto glass fragments or tesserae, Lilian’s work was immediately intriguing to textile surface designers. Those who attended were visibly energized and inspired by Lilian’s words, and the impressive sketches and mosaic works of her Judith Series, on exhibit.
For Lilian, “the artist’s role is to listen, question and to expose.” And over the last 20 years, her work “has asserted the powerful female” by retelling ancient stories of women heroes who, despite societal restrictions, become leaders in their communities through acts of courage and sacrifice.
The artist discussed her use of colour, light and pushing the boundaries of historical expectations of her chosen medium, techniques, and narratives, to realize a contemporary and personally relevant artistic vision. She shared with us her research and preparation for each series of her works, her personal connection to her subject matter and her approach to bringing naturalistic sensuality, light and liveliness to the pixilated design surface of her compelling mosaics. We were glad to have had the opportunity to spend some time with this kindred spirit.
In the question period after her talk, Lilian talked about her experiences having her distinctive mosaics reproduced without her permission or knowledge on clothing and other items around the world. Making her own limited edition silk scarves using her imagery is her own statement and response. For an interesting read on this topic, see the recent interview with Lilian in the Globe and Mail.
Here are a few pictures and further notes from that day.
Photos: S. Senaratne
Lilian noted that late last year, the Guggenheim Museum presented an exhibition called “STORYLINES: Contemporary Art at the Guggenheim”, a group exhibition examining how artists today forge new paradigms for storytelling. Drawing attention a kind of fashion that can sometimes sweep though artistic practice and how important it is to have confidence in your own personal vision, she went on to say, “Personally, I’ve been telling stories in my art since the 80s, when such art was hardly considered cutting edge…I formulate my own personal vision while remaining true to myself.”
Working with the aesthetics of Byzantine mosaic and creating a more naturalistic Post Modernist one, her contemporary art has been recontextualizing female narratives.
“The Bible offers humanity profound insight into tough political and personal issues. The fascinating biblical books of Esther and Judith inspired me to recreate, or retell them through my own artistic, distilled vision. Terrible things happen in both stories. The Book of Esther includes a plot of genocide, a family’s execution, and the slaying of thousands. The Judith story speaks of the gory beheading of Assyrian General Holofernes by a Jewish widow who singlehandedly saves a whole town from slavery… the Books of Esther and Judith must be understood not just literally but also metaphorically.”
“I have erroneously been called a “religious artist”, but religion is not only a story of faith, it is a story of history and social values.”
“Esther and Judith’s stories each promote an individual, and particularly a woman’s sacrifice and determination to defend the liberty of her people.”
“After extensive research of the historical period in which the stories take place, I begin with sketching from models. Many, many, sketches which ultimately get painted as mosaic cartoons. These become guides for the duration of the mosaic execution.” These preparatory sketches and cartoons were exhibited along side the mosaics and added depth and delight for visitors to the show.
Lilian Broca’s show, A Heroine of a Thousand Pieces, is currently on exhibit at Toronto’s JD Carrier Art Gallery from May 5 – July 4, 2016. In August 2016, two of the Judith series mosaics travel to the curated group exhibition called “Characters in a Book” at the Lexington Public Library Fine Art gallery in Lexington, KY. Finally, from January 22nd to April 23rd, 2017, the entire exhibition goes to The Museum of Biblical Art in Dallas TX.
An intrepid team from the Vancouver Island SDA group received and installed the National Touring Exhibition “Edge of the Forest” at the Coast Collective Gallery in Colwood, BC on Monday, March 21. The exhibition is on view until April 3.
Special thanks to the wonderful team from the Vancouver Island Surface Design Association group who have organized the arrival of the “Edge of the Forest” exhibition in BC and the associated “Gathering at the Edge” event coming very soon.
Left to right: Gina Dingwell, Barbara McCaffrey, Lesley Turner and Laura Feeleus.