Sunday, March 13, 2016

ÉMERGEANCE D'INTRUSION - Exhibition and Residency in Saint-Boniface, Winnipeg MB

Visitors to the Franco-Manitoban Cultural Centre in Winnipeg, MB view the "Dark Water" series of low relief panels.
The CCFM Gallery is a favourite spot while waiting for a table at Stella's restaurant!

Experimenting with the transparency of Plexiglass! 8 x 10 in.

Drawing before incising Plexiglass
Drawing again based on a walk by the Red River in Winnipeg

Detail of incised Plexiglass based on the drawing above. This project is still in progress!

The exhibition runs from March 3 to May 12, 2016. I have been here in Winnipeg since February 19, experimenting with transparency and plant forms, mounting my show of the "Bouquet" and "Dark Water" series, and teaching eight workshops for school children and teachers. The month has gone by very quickly!

I've been fortunate to meet new people, visit galleries and museums and to appreciate the vibrant artistic community in Winnipeg.  

Thank you to the provinces of Manitoba and New Brunswick for supporting my projects at the CCFM.

Sunday, January 17, 2016

Ashes and Ice: 'Rencontre primordial' concepts

Steam Fields, watercolour on paper, 10 x 30 in. 2016
Final work will be about 4 x 9 ft., acrylic on incised plywood panels

Greenhouses, watercolour on paper, 15 x 30 in. 2016
Final work will be about 4 x 6 ft., acrylic on incised plywood panels.
Thanks to ArtsNB for their support of my project 'Rencontre primordial,' comprising five large format low relief paintings based on my residency in Iceland last July. While arranging for new studio space, I have continued sketching in watercolour.  Each of these sketches combines elements from more than one location.  Final large works will be simplified, textured and darkened.

Je remercie ArtsNB de leur appui de mon projet "Rencontre primordial,' qui comprend cinq tableaux à grand format qui s'inspirent de ma résidence en Islande juillet passé.  Lorsque je fais de arrangements pour un espace studio, je complètent des esquisses en aquarelle.  Chaque dessin combine des éléments de plus d'un locale. Je planifie des tableaux simplifiés,  incisés et plus sombres en ton.

Tuesday, August 11, 2015

Iceland: Ash and Ice

Vatnajökull Glacier pokes through masses of volcanic rock.
Watercolour, 22 x 30 in. 2015
Hekla volcano dominates the landscape.  Its last eruption occurred in 2000.
Watercolour,  17½ x 30 in. 2015
Ashes from the 2010 eruption of Eyjafjökull stain the glacier black where ice has melted beneath.
Watercolour,  17½ x 30 in. 2015
Mist over Mount Esja, 11 x 14 in. 2015
Valley near Mosfellbær, watercolour, 11 x 14 in. 2015
One morning I was painting at Górvik cove when an arctic tern began fishing directly in front of me. This was the first time I had been so close to one of these great diving birds. It circled above the water and then took a plunging nose-dive into the water. The fish seemed to escape a half a dozen times before the tern was satisfied and flew off with its catch. The water was crystal clear and completely still.  Two arctic loons appeared in the distance, their heads bobbing at the water's surface. I recognized their eerie calls, although the sound was slightly different from the common loons of Eastern Canada.  About twenty minutes later the breeze began, rippling the water and changing the aspect of the landscape. 

The contrast between dark volcanic ash and white ice fascinates.  Mount Hekla lurks innocently behind fields of lupins, yet it is one of Iceland's most active volcanoes with over 20 eruptions since 874 AD. It is about three miles long and 5000 feet high.  

Watercolour has an immediacy that I returned to during my residency at Korpúlfsstađir. It was a last-minute decision to pack my watercolour supplies. These sketches record visual images and ideas quickly.  I have a large, round Chinese painting brush that helps me avoid extraneous details.  

Sunday, August 9, 2015

Iceland: Strokkur Geysir

Strokkur Geysir erupts every 8 to 10 minutes.

The plume of water rises 15 to 30 metres in a few seconds.
I had to back up to fit the whole plume in the photo frame.

The water recedes just as quickly as it rises!
 Little Geysir boils continuously.

The original Geysir hot spring is less active now, erupting about twice a year, but the nearby Strokkur Geysir enthrals crowds of tourists. There are other geysers and hot pools in the area, including basins of bubbling mud surrounded by crusts of yellow and red mineral deposits.  The Geysir Visitor Center includes eateries, souvenirs and beautiful (expensive) gifts as well as a gas station. 

Geothermal activity is ever-present as you travel around Iceland. Plumes of steam rise from hillsides with the occasional whiff of sulfur dioxide.  Geothermal swimming pools, heating plants and electricity-generating stations utilize the massive power that lies beneath the surface of the land. 

My new series of paintings and panels suggests some of this geological activity.