Janice Evans, a well known active member here at the gallery, recently spent time in China with some fellow artists and has very kindly shared her great experience with us! Be sure to check out her piece “West Coast Holiday,” currently on display as part of the “Works on Paper” exhibit – on now until January 22!
By: Janice Evans
O.k., I admit it, I’m a plein air junkie. I paint whenever and wherever I can. In all weather and locations – by the ocean, in the forest, on mountains, in airplanes, cars, buses, and ferries…I’m obsessed!
Being outdoor painters, we are a hardy bunch and our adventures have been numerous, touching the spirit of nature with our paint and brush. The other side of plein air is being touched by other people that we have met during our plein air travels.
While painting at the Ladysmith harbour last year, I met a Chinese woman, Yulin, originally from Beijing, now residing in Ottawa with her husband. She was visiting the area with some newly arrived Chinese friends. They were fascinated with my painting style, which, as some of you know, has a distinct Asian feel. I ended up giving my paintings to them as I often do, to those who are not from Canada, as a little good will.
Yulin was anxious for me to meet her sister, Yufen Deng, also an artist, who was visiting in Ottawa from Beijing. It was arranged for Yufen to fly to Nanaimo and spend a few days at my home, painting with me. What a great visit! We had an exchange of cultural ideas and painting styles and practices. Yufen Deng is a wonderful predominantly floral watercolour painter in the Chinese tradition but with a twist of modernity. She does beautiful work and experimented using different paper and paints in my studio. She studies under an exceptionally famous and beautiful Chinese woman artist, He Yunlan, in Beijing.
Skip ahead a year and I’ve just arrived back from a two week adventure in China. Landing in Beijing, Yufen was there with flowers in hand to greet me. Meeting her husband, mother and son at their home the next evening was a treat. We also met Yufen’s teacher, He Yunlan, at her home, and saw work that is so contemporary yet still retained an oriental feel. Her work presented large swaths of dynamic muted colour on paper and fabric panels.
Unexpectedly, her famous, 90 year old artist husband, Lui Boshu, made an appearance too. Both are from the China Central Academy of Fine Arts, and this was a highlight of my journey. Their work spoke volumes about their painting passion. Lui Boshu specializes in painting horses in a unique style of flowing and lucid strokes that integrates Chinese calligraphy into his painting. I was honoured to receive one of his fans on which he had painted one of his horse paintings. It will be treasured always.
Art unites us in times of uncertainty and mistrust. Art feeds the soul and makes the heart sing. Art reaches down deep and pulls the emotional human drive to connect with others and shows to not be afraid to reach out. We are one in art. Art unites the world.
FCA members, are you interested in having your own article published in the next edition of Art Avenue and would like to open your studio doors for a peek inside your personal creative space?
We are seeking submissions from our members for the The Inside View feature in Art Avenue, an FCA publication. Published 6 times per year and distributed to all our members The Inside View takes our readership on a journey through the professional workspaces of some of our most exciting, successful artists.Many aspiring artists do not yet have their own studios, or may be in the process of creating one and this article helps readers see how other artists have shaped and created studios which suit their mediums, practice and personalities.
We are always happy to receive content and news from our members! If you you would like to contribute please read the submission guidelines on our website at: http://artists.ca/member_resources/art_avenue_submissions below and contact Dara McDermott at firstname.lastname@example.org.
The British painter, Francis Bacon was very secretive about his painting methods and his studio space, 7 Reece Mews, London, where he worked for the last 30 years of his life. After Bacon’s death, his studio and its entire contents were removed and relocated inside the The Hugh Lane Gallery in Dublin, Ireland after his death. The Francis Bacon Studio Database is the first computerised archive of the entire contents of a world ranking artist’s studio. Consisting of a kitchen with a bath and living room that doubled as a bedroom, his tiny chaotic studio cluttered with painting materials, canvasses photographs, books, notes, serves as a magnetic database and archive of the artist and his work.
The Town of Niagara-on-the-Lake is issuing a Request for Proposals (RFP) to interested artists (“Artist”) to commission a work of public art to be situated in the future Regent Street Park. This park will be used to memorialize and celebrate the Town’s Black history. The successful artwork will be displayed in a symbolic and/or prominent place within the park to symbolize the resilient efforts the Black population played in the 1793 anti-slavery legislation and their efforts in welcoming newly arrived freedom-seekers, as well as a beacon of hope to remind future generations of the importance of diversity, inclusion, and freedom.
To view a copy of the RFP, please login to www.biddingo.comor pick up a hard copy from the Town’s Municipal Offices located at 1593 Four Mile Creek Road, Virgil or contact Kevin Turcotte via email to receive the documents electronically.
The deadline for proposals is January 31, 2017 however, interested artists must register by January 6, 2017.
For more information, please contact:
Kevin Turcotte, Manager of Parks & Recreation