Newzones is pleased to present “Midwinter Thaw”, a solo exhibition by Yechel Gagnon.
Gagnon’s visual language gained much of its syntax through working with plywood; the themes and techniques that are explored are diverse. Plywood can exemplify dualism of identity: a complex, industrially-produced material layered with ‘content’ from its natural, organic source. No two panels are alike. Each stratification conceals an intriguing vocabulary of knots, grains, textures, hues, growth rings, organic networks of fine lines and whirls and manufacturing defects within an artificial end product. Restoring submerged values to plywood's diminished practical identity through re-layering redirects its purpose to that of a kind of decoy: an uncanny reminder of an almost forgotten, fuller world and our place within it.In this new series of wood bas-reliefs, Gagnon uses fire as a creative tool. Her process is physical and forceful, yet paradoxically the resulting abstract and complex works are seductive, refined, and transcend the process. Alchemy is put into play and the elemental is brought to the forefront.
The charred wood surface, with accents of gold and bronze leaf, stand starkly against tinted and exotic veneers mounted into custom-made plywood.Gagnon sees in this unique material an unfamiliar terrain to be discovered and annotated, much as an explorer leaves a cartographic record of points of departure and changes of direction. By employing tools and techniques devised for unfolding, layering, and de-layering to unearth imagery from the material at hand, the resulting pieces allude to worlds of dissonant tension and balance, composed of voids as well as signs, of emptiness aside human presence, and of the natural with the artificial. She interweaves her artistic vision with those intrinsic to the material, adding layers of meaning and complexity. One travels afar in these carved realms. Exploring and touching raw territories. They become worlds within worlds which converge and collide, to create a new Pangaea.
The title “Midwinter Thaw” quotes the poetry of Canadian writer Lenore Alexandra Pratt. An affinity exists between both women’s work as they explore the threshold of the natural world. Yechel Gagnon was invited by Ronald P. Frye Book to publish one of her works on the cover of this volume of the Chapbook series. The dialogues created between the poetry of Pratt and the visual work of Gagnon echoes a rawness and elegance existing in their creative works.
Yechel Gagnon completed a Master of Fine Arts in Studio Arts from Concordia University after receiving an AOCAD with Honours in Drawing and Painting from the Ontario College of Art and Design. Her work has received reviews in the Globe & Mail, Canadian Art, Vie des Arts, Espace magazine and Circa International magazine. Gagnon’s work is widely collected and is part of the Art Gallery of Nova Scotia, Osler Hoskins & Harcourt collection, Le Centre-d’art de Baie-St-Paul, Bishop's University, University of Montreal, and the Gotland Museum of Fine Arts in Sweden, to name a few.
Newzones is pleased to present “Building Blocks of Colour”, a solo exhibition by Jonathan Forrest.
Part of the vibrant next generation of Saskatchewan's abstract painters, Forrest's boldly coloured acrylic paintings playfully reference post-war abstract painting. But instead of introspectively exploring the canvas, Forrest's layered works lift from the surface, tactfully invading the viewers' space.
In his new series, the structures within the paintings becomes more about layering and building areas of colour – enjoying their transparency and pigment mixture, how colours overlap, how the dynamic “sail” images move the eye, and how the positive colour radiates. Inspired by the space and light in his rural Saskatchewan studio, Forrest was prompted to explore a brighter colour range.
“Colour is sensory, it impacts you. It’s emotion and feeling enveloping you. Your eyes soak it in and it's irresistible.”
Jonathan Forrest received both his Bachelor and Masters of Fine Arts from the University of Saskatchewan. He also attended the Emma Lake Artist's Workshop and became an organizer in 2001. His work had been widely exhibited within Canada and can be found in many public collections including: the Canada Council's Art Bank, University of Saskatchewan and the Art Gallery of Alberta.
Rana Rochat - "Works on Paper"
Saturday, October 28, from 2-4PM
730 11th Ave SW
Newzones is pleased to present “Works on Paper”, a solo exhibition by Rana Rochat.
Rochat maintains that narratives sacrifice intuition, gut feelings, and the profound experience of mystery that a painting has the potential to provide. In her new series, the forms and marks, with their apparent weight, particular vitality, and inertia, live in a luminous and transparent environment. Their primary focus is on rhythm and cadence that she conveys through color, line, and forms. As such, they are purely expressive or lyrical, not narrative. Rochat’s paintings are there to let the mind of viewers run free and float through colors and patterns, moods and emotions.
Working in the encaustic medium, Rana Rochat’s paintings aim to capture the delicate balance between order and chaos, reason and spontaneity. These earthy paintings result from this search and take place within the richly layered encaustic surfaces of vividly colored wax and transparent layers. The sense of depth is built into her paintings through the gradual addition of forms and textures.
Swirls, lines, and drips are formed within the luminous layers of each painting. While appearing natural and familiar, they are at the same time non-specific, refusing to adhere to just a single meaning for viewers. The freedom in the shapes allows viewers to get lost in thought and generate their own meaning from the artwork. Her new series is moving toward an openness: letting color and space within the piece play a more prominent role in achieving a balanced yet lively environment coexisting with forms, line, and marks.
In these paintings, Rochat creates what she calls “an experience that is pre-verbal, promoting pictorial awareness prior to any explicit formatting of perceptual experiences into narratives” and refers to her own artwork as “visual poems”.
Dianne Bos - "The Sleeping Green"
Saturday, October 28, 2017: 2-4 PM
730 11th Ave SW
Newzones is pleased to be hosting a book signing of "The Sleeping Green" with Dianne Bos on Saturday, October 28, 2017: 2-4 PM !
Dianne Bos uses a line from British poet and soldier Isaac Rosenberg’s famous WWI poem “Break of Day in the Trenches” for the title of this exhibition. The Sleeping Green: no man’s land 100 years later consists of extraordinary photographs taken in ‘no-man’s land’ between the trenches on the Western Front. Through this series, Bos examines the historic battlegrounds of World War I. The pinhole photography techniques she uses produce still images of a passage of time. She explores how time has changed the landscape of these historic battlegrounds 100 years later. In ways other than the presence of memorials, does a memory of that past persist at these sites? Tens of thousands of people who were killed in that war are part of the landscape. Is there a memory in the soil, water, plants, and trees of their presence? Does an echo of war still resonate in the sky above?
If you are a follower of pinhole photography, chances are that you are aware of photographer Dianne Bos. Bos has exhibited internationally in numerous group and solo exhibitions since 1981 and her pinhole photographs have been included in important international exhibitions in Italy, Spain, France, Syria, and Japan as well as solo exhibitions across Canada. These include ‘Light Echo’, an innovative installation at the McMaster Museum of Art linking celestial and earthly history in collaboration with astronomer Doug Welch; It's You!: Unexpected Photographs from Papua New Guinea, at the Confederation Centre of the Arts, Art Gallery, PEI.; and Reading Room at the Cambridge Galleries, which explored the book as a camera. In 2011, Bos was also awarded the public art design commission by the City of Calgary for its lamp-post banners.
Exhibition runs from Saturday, October 28, 2017 - Saturday, November 18, 2017.
Newzones is pleased to announce the much-anticipated return of our holiday “Deck the Walls!” exhibition!
Ever evolving, "Deck the Walls!" will present itself as an entire wall of small-to-medium sized artworks, perfect for gift-giving this holiday season. This salon-inspired exhibition will aim to entice viewers to give the spectacular gift of art for the holidays. "Deck the Walls!" is a fabulous opportunity to display a wide variety of artworks for all to enjoy. There is something for everyone!
Newzones will show work by a many gallery artists, such as Calgary-based Bradley Harms, Colleen Philippi and pinhole photographer Dianne Bos. Favourite painters like Kevin Sonmor, Anda Kubis, and Marie Lannoo will also be highlighted. Photo-based artists such as James Holroyd, Franco DeFrancesca, and Joshua Jensen-Nagle will be included. And not to be forgotten are Cathy Daley's iconic drawings of the female form.
"Deck the Walls!" is sure to inspire some wonderful gift-giving ideas - this event is not to be missed!
So, come one, come all, and take delight in our spectacular holiday wall!
Newzones is excited to celebrate its 25th anniversary along side “Beautiful Mess”, a solo exhibition by Calgary based artist Colleen Philippi!
Philippi’s assemblage artwork immediately captures the attention of the viewer. A sense of mysticism comes from her highly creative and personal visual vocabulary of secrets, treasure, allegories, astronomy, poetry and memory, working to create unique moments in time.
This newest series is a collection of untried ideas: ideas with technical or formal challenges Philippi was unable to resolve. There were prophetic "forerunner” pieces that remained orphans until she reached an understanding that enabled her to make additional related works. These ideas remained in limbo as paper ideas or daydreams, anticipating the day that their time to materialize would arrive. With this show, their time has arrived in the form of an alternative retrospective, something from a parallel world of untried ideas encompassing the eight solo shows Philippi has had at Newzones over the 25 years together.
Stylistically and conceptually, Philippi is assembling from visual building blocks: partial and full letters, word fragments, signs, basic geometric shapes and patterns, colour samples, paint and colour palettes, pieces of isolated or displaced furniture, human anatomy, images of landscape, insects, butterflies, etc. Combined, these simple components work together to create meaning to which the viewer adds his or her own significance.
Colleen Philippi received her BFA from the University of Alberta in 1982. Ms. Philippi has a long exhibition history and exhibits internationally at art fairs with Newzones. Besides finding her magical assemblages in private, corporate, and museum collections, locally, nationally, and internationally, she has completed commissions for Rotary Flames House, Calgary, AB., Island Hospital Anacortes, Seattle, WA, Swedish Foundation, Seattle, WA, and Pason Systems Ltd, Calgary, AB., amongst others.
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