WAM's first virtual exhibition was selected in a small owner-operated establishment called Blues Java Bar run by Leah Mailloux who emigrated from Kenya. Her small establishment is infused with her Kenyan roots, offering vibrant colours and delightful patterns in a comfortable welcoming decor. Leah is inviting, resourceful and always willing to share stories.
The works selected for this exhibition share remarkable similarities to this bar and its owner. They speak of location and the pleasure and comfort each artist found with imagery they defined as culturally important. Be it a swan, a chair, a flower or some stones, each image gives us a glimpse of who these artists are—just as the carefully selected bibelots, trinkets and artworks of the Blues Java Bar tell us about this Kenyan woman. Blues Java Selection represents artists who we felt valued their environment and the people, animals or objects which inhabit them, and who valued telling a story from a unique and personal point of view.
We were amazed at the diversity of styles and the broad use of materials within this group and their artistic statements conveyed their intents in a meaningful way. We have however limited the texts for this virtual exhibition to colourful interpretive words that resonated with the works we selected. It is with pleasure that we acknowledge the accomplishment of these women artists.
Danielle LaBrie and Glenys Switzer, curators
paper, watercolour, 22" x 17", 2006
There are words to an old song, “You will see the soul of the crystal reflected in the edges of mirrors, and you will see the soul of world reflected in the edges of dreams.” In my artworks, I try to go behind the usual understanding of things and events.
"The process of using my hands to draw is key for me. It allows the images to literally flow out of me." Aspen Gainer, Other Voices, Spring/Summer 2011
I want to recreate the essence of the object and transpose that quality into an abstract or semi-abstract work.
Distinctive, impressionistic and vibrant, conveying a sense of warmth, freedom, and well being that comes from being out in nature on a summer's day.
My work depicts the underlying causes of violence and anger; in order to stop the pain we must first reveal the cause.
This body of work features simplified form and strong organic lines combined with warm, vibrant colour.
The depiction of a place to sit and read also references the slow movement, voluntary simplicity, which alludes to a search for connection.
This winter I wove giant nests out of Sisal rope to try to make a nicer place for the swans to sit on instead of sitting on the ice.
Life is like a river
Tiny stream flows towards the ocean
Merging, crashing and changing as it moves along,
Then, it evaporates becomes rain
Nurturing all matter.
Process of creative painting is
Like a journey through a river.
I like to use brushwork, colour, harmony and texture to express the infinite variety found in nature.
I paint scenes many will recognize as landmarks, painting also the hidden beauty of remote, hardly accessible locations.
I have been exploring the relationship between planned elements and utterly random accidents.
This piece is about creating mystery from the mundane, striving for drama so that multiple meanings and interpretations are possible and encouraged.
My objective is to combine technical precision with strong design elements to present an edited but convincing realism.
The Alberta landscape is a constant source of inspiration.
The Earth Rocks : What a beautiful, marvellous place the earth can be.
The Earth Rocks : Mountains, Canyons, Shells, rocks of the earth.
The Earth Rocks : We think the earth is solid, we build a nuclear power plant on a fault line, and
then the earth rocks.
The premise of my work has been to look at how history has influenced the present. I have travelled archaeological and anthropological research paths focused in the domestication field.
I see rhythm and movement in life.
Everything changes from moment to moment.
One gets flickers of reality and, then, it’s gone.
The narrative of imagery attracts me.
Acrylic paint indulges my love of colour and my desire to form images that create a sense of well-being.
There is no premeditation to my work. I fell that I am drawing from within my deepest regions, the self waiting to be revealed.
I am rather timid about revealing my work...I am most raw and vulnerable in my creations.