Exhibitions and Events
Sculptor Donna Hiebert's most recent work involves three large enigmatic sculptural forms, situated in relation to three equally evocative wall works. The installation, which explores the nature of containment, is wide-ranging in its allusions - from caskets and sarcophagi, through ancient lingam forms -- always returns the viewer to a sense of the body in relation to sculpture, and to "what might be contained within".
In her playfully ironic series The Goddess in Every Woman Susanne MacKay recasts herself as various classical deities such as Aphrodite, Athene and Hera, in order to explore afresh the archetypes of beauty, worth and wisdom. These paintings, completed in 1993, are twinned with an earlier group of portraits titled Musume/Daughters to provide a gentle meditation on youth, motherhood and middle-age. This exhibition has received funding from the Saskatchewan Arts Board.
Alice Mansell continues her work with gender and identity issues in this three-part installation, each component of which invites the active participation of the viewer through the use of mirrors, video-feedback and interactive computer programs (electronic components designed in collaboration with Arthur Meads). Through drawings, paintings and less traditional media, Mansell explores the association of authority and gender with particular styles of clothing, conventions of portraiture, and modes of making art.
This timely and thought-provoking exhibition focused on the microcosm of contemporary ceramic practices in Atlantic Canada, including works by Joan Bruneau, Neil Forrest, Ghita Levin, Ray Mackie, Joan McNeil, Walter Ostrom, Peter Powning, Craig Schneider, Tom Smith, K.R. Thompson, and Marie Ulmer. As guest curator for this project, sculptor and teacher Arthur Handy presented a rigorous analysis of recent history and practice in ceramics, revealing issues and problems, and encouraging critical reflection on the uses of clay as a medium for art.
Wayne Boucher's recent acrylic and oil paintings employ intense, vibrant colours, in contrast to the largely monochromatic abstractions of his previous two decades of work. Parts of narratives, mythic structures and signs are more prominent in these recent works, where large expansive shapes (oceans, vistas, skies) are played against small restrictive shapes suggesting channels, fences, windmills, ladders or passageways. Mysterious and sensuous, these paintings oscillate between concentrated areas of high-energy markings and smooth single-colour planes.
Naked or clothed, images of the human body are central in the art of many cultures, and have always been invested with meanings beyond mere representation. Historical figure works frequently embodied allegorical or religious significance, while more recent body images often reflect the sexual and psychological anxieties of the era. Through gesture, stance, or treatment, even the most conventional figure works communicate more, perhaps, than the artist may have intended.
Presently curator of the Black Cultural Centre in Dartmouth, Henry Bishop is an artist, historian and educator, who studied graphic design at Nova Scotia College of Art and Design. The front alcove exhibition presents a selection of Bishop's illustrations for learning guides for elementary school-age children -- lively images of heroes and heroines, such as Portia White and Marcus Garvey, who have contributed to the history and culture of African Canadians in Canada.
In her recent works, Halifax artist Marilyn McAvoy employs recycled fragments of flats from film sets as supports for sensuous still life and flower paintings. Combining these paintings, in varying scales and degrees of finish, with other salvaged elements (faux marbled panels, wallpaper, brown crackled wainscotting) McAvoy creates assemblages that, while pleasing in their formal design, raise teasing questions about perception and visual representation.
This annual exhibition celebrates the artistic creativity of members of the University community in painting, graphic art, photography, mixed media, sculpture and crafts. All members of the Dalhousie community are invited to enter and no distinction is made between amateurs and professionals. Artworks ready for display will be accepted at the Gallery from 1-12 November inclusive during regular gallery hours. Entry forms will be available in early October.
In conjunction with the Dalhousie Music Department, the Gallery will celebrate the 300th anniversary of the death of the composer Henry Purcell, 1659-1695, ("a greater musical genius England never had," Roger North, 1726) by presenting a display of art and artifacts relevent to Purcell and his times, and hosting various associated musical and literary events.