“Artist—Art—Artist” by Banff wedding photographer, Shirleen Burnett, is on exhibition in the One White Wall space at Elevation Gallery on MainSt. in Canmore until April 23, 2016.
Watch this short movie on the scene behind the show:
Art is an amazing doorway into another world—a world we share, but as different as an alien planet because it is the world as experienced by another.
Art is an intimate invitation to gaze into a fellow human’s heart and feel what they feel; to look through their eyes and see what they see. Their emotions and experiences, their psyche and very soul is laid bare before us for our contemplation.
I studied them in their work space attempting to gain insight into their unique creative processes. I wondered,
How did each of these creatives take their particular vision and manifest it as art into the world?
What goes through their minds when confronted by a blank canvas?
I have to admit to you, I went into this project wearing the lenses of my own creative experiences, a bit like a North American traveller leaving their country for the first time and expecting to find western culture in the far East. I imagined these artists to be quiet and contemplative before a blank canvas because that is how I behave when confronted with the sublime yet formidable task of creating my work. I composed portraits in my mind of what their creative process might look like but my pre suppositions were entirely wrong!
Therein lies the beauty of our uniqueness. We share the same spaces, we see the same landscapes and yet, our perceptions are as foreign as they are familiar.
“Papaya Love” & “Caffeine & Color”, Each printed on 60″ x 40″ canvas
Chrissy Nickerson does not sit quietly in front of a black canvas in contemplation of the work she is about to endeavor. She is movement. She is a whirlwind of caffeine and color, tossing about sketches and photocopies of the landscapes she is recreating. Her inspiration is literally on pages all over the floop and she’s stepping on it and kicking it aside as she paints. I found it informative, inspiring, invigorating and ever so slightly unnerving to watch her, being the precision freak I am!
These portraits are true to my artistic process, but not necessarily Chrissy’s!
Bigoudi’s studio was no less chaotic than Chrissy’s, but I felt a calm, serenity there. Maybe it was just the fact that her little boys, Theo & Toby, ages 6 & 4 were not home! Both Chrissy & Pascale are parents to 2 little boys. How they manage to be the prolific artists they are is nothing short of a miracle and a mystery.
The painting from where the cow originates is entitled “Papaya Whip”. Pascale admitted that naming her pieces is often a challenge and so she finds inspiration from the name of paint colors. The title of a piece is an important, albet overlooked, aspect of the work. Often after I create a piece, I’m irritated by this, thinking: isn’t it enough that I created it? Now I have to find a clever name for it as well !@? And, usually by this point, I’m feeling like I’m all out of creativity! So I thought Pacale’s work around was ingenious. As a nod to her, I named my own piece “Papaya Love”.
Artist: Chrissy Nickerson
Artist: Shirleen Burnett
I owe my gratitude to the following people for making “Artist—Art—Artist” possible:
- Cheryl Baxter, a great lady and supporter of the arts in Canmore as well as the owner of Elevation Gallery.
- Artists Chrissy Nickerson & Pascale Ouellet for the participation in this endeavor.
- Phil & Trish at Elevation Gallery for their kind assistance in sorting out the details.
- My incredible husband, Troy Burnett, for so many reasons, the least of which was his voluntary abstinence from mountain bike riding on one of the most beautiful days imaginable to help me install the show.
- and of course, my fascinating children,—Isis & Beren Wolf, for just being who they are! I love you!
“Artist—Art—Artist” will be on exhibition in the One White Wall space at Elevation Gallery until April 23, 2016. Check it out and let me know what you think!