In a class by themselves and still on view!
The three winners at the Artful Revival Festival Exhibition were feted and celebrated with the generous awarding of prizes from the Headwaters Arts sponsors. This direct acknowledgement of local and area businesses to honour the ‘sweat equity’ of artists in their professions is an important step in recognizing the business side of a creative’s life.
Best In Show was awarded to Karen Brown for Primrose Path, a piece made with the sweat equity of her bees, since encaustic work requires beeswax. Karen and her husband, who live locally outside of Erin, can harvest not only the honey, but the wax from their own hives. Along with her position in grounds keeping, maintenance, and management at Mount Alverno, Karen shares the Bee Hive studio space at the Alton Mill Arts Centre. She does workshops with all the social distancing protocols in place at her studio, plus having the space to create her own pieces there. As a member of Headwaters Arts she sits on the Gallery Committee, is Acting Vice President on the Board of Directors, frequently shows pieces in other shows that the Headwaters Arts group puts on in their Gallery at the Mill, and maintains her own on-line business here. Bryan’s Fuels sponsored the prize with Laura Bryan presenting the certificate during the afternoon FETE in absetenia to Gallery Chair, Regan Jane Hayward.
Further east of the Headwaters Arts Gallery, in Caledon East, lives MaryLou Hurley, creator of the arresting piece, The Duchess. Also, a member of the Headwaters Arts group, her mosaic sculptural pieces have a commanding presence. Her practice includes upcycling glass, old ceramics, tile, mirror, and bits of jewelry into dramatic pieces, often with a dash of sass and whimsy. Her studio can be found online and in Caledon East where she displays her work and gives classes. MaryLou exhibits her work with the Colour and Form Society and Beaux Arts Gallery to mention just a few of the places where you could expect to see her work. The second-place prize was awarded to Mary Lou Hurley by JDC Custom Homes Inc. of Orangeville.
Third prize was sponsored by the Lord Dufferin Centre Retirement Residence of Orangeville. Dave Holwell, Owner and Managing Director, awarded the prize to Robert Chisholm of Orangeville for his piece, Lady Divine. With so many influences on their various artistic practices, one thing stands out with all of these creatives. Their dedication and drive to create are woven throughout their lives. For Robert in particular, he credits much to the influence of his father who was a sign painter for the government. He remembers going to work with his father on weekends and as a younger child sitting on his lap when his father was sketching for his own pleasure. Robert’s first award for his art was in elementary school. A member of SOVA, Southern Ontario Visual Artists, Headwaters Arts, and the Orangeville Art Group, more of Robert’s work may be seen on his website with the SOVA group here.
Honourable Mention was awarded to Melissa Kristensen-Smith, a new member to Headwaters Arts from Kitchener-Waterloo for Cabbagetown Beauty 1. Her practice is photography but unique to her process is what the images are rendered on. She and her husband upcycle reclaimed wood and with their own treatment, she is able to create images that transcend a photographic print and become a whole new work of art in the process. A tour of her website will quickly demonstrate the interesting effects created by her artistic practice, here.
The arts and cultural sector is the fastest-growing sector in Ontario. Positioned in a scenic destination area, Headwaters Arts Gallery in the Alton Mill Arts Centre has moved forward in how it fulfills its mandate to represent member artists while allowing for safe access to art exhibits for the public during these challenging times of the pandemic.
Starting in April and on through July, they launched a “virtual gallery” with slide presentations of three shows on their website. In August, as galleries were open to the public again, three of their artist members held a tremendously successful proposal show, EAST Greets WEST. Currently hanging in the Headwaters Arts Gallery is another proposal show, member Sherry Park’s solo show, Cape Breton Highlands.
And finally, for the Artful Revival Festival Exhibition, the organization moved to a true 3-D virtual gallery tour here on the Headwaters Arts website. This tour is live through mid-December for viewing and purchasing of the art from most of the 52 artists across Ontario who were in this show.
Steve Wilson, an internationally acclaimed artist in his own right, adjudicated the show which was then hung by Regan Jane Hayward, Gallery chair, with the committee members. Active with their own arts practices, Steve recently moved from Inglewood to Niagara Falls, Ontario to open up a larger studio and gallery, while Regan is Acting Director of Beaux Arts Brampton and has an independent art curator practice.
Headwaters Arts salutes these four artists and gratefully acknowledges the ongoing support of our local businesses who sponsored their awards and are annual contributors to our organization. The community connections remain strong with this dedication to keeping these hills alive with vibrant art and cultural activities!
Driven to create …© is a column Connie Munson, local photographer, artist, and writer, has developed to share an inside look at the creative process as it manifests within its larger community. She is a director on the board of Headwaters Arts, which has their gallery in the Alton Mill Arts Centre in Caledon, a member of several other arts organizations, and may be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.
References – Artful Revival Festival Exhibition: Winners Take All!
- Headwaters Arts
- Headwaters Arts – Artful Revival Exhibition – 3D Virtual Tour
- Karen Brown Encaustics
- Mosaics by MaryLou Hurley
- Southern Ontario Visual Artists
- Exhibition leaves Headwaters Arts with much to be thankful for!
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