Summer exhibit opens at Grenfell gallery
By Connie Boland
The Sir Wilfred Grenfell College Art Gallery recently opened its summer exhibition Exhibit A: Photography from Atlantic Canada, which features the work of nine artists connected to the Atlantic region by personal history and artistic practices.
Ned Pratt is one of the artists featured in Exhibit A: Photography from Atlantic Canada, on display until Sept. 15 at the Sir Wilfred Grenfell College Art Gallery. This image is from Pratt’s Biscuit Box series.
The work of artists Scott Conarroe, Marlene Creates, Lorriane Field, John Haney, Thaddeus Holownia, Steve Payne, Paulette Phillips, Ned Pratt and Scott Walden will be on display at the gallery until Sept. 15.
Exhibit A is organized and circulated by the Saint Mary’s University Art Gallery. In the catalogue accompanying the exhibition, curator Scott McLeod notes that these artists tend to reject the romantic view of the sea and traditional seascape photography, shifting their focus from the sea to the land. “In so doing, they examine constructions in the landscape that, whether for habitation, worship, industry or leisure, offer evidence of life in the region, past and present,” said Mr. McLeod.
The historical practice of moving houses from one location to another by sea is an important part of the cultural history of Atlantic Canada. Paulette Phillips’s The Floating House is a video installation of a house floating on the sea, a recreation of the relocation of a specific house built in Mahone Bay, Nova Scotia, in the 1890s.
The mass relocation of outport communities in Newfoundland and Labrador in the 1960s is recalled by Phillips’ video and the past traces of those resettled communities are documented in Scott Walden’s silver gelatin photographs in his series titled Unsettled.
Steven Payne’s House Music is a series of color photographs that grew from his experience of restoring an abandoned house in Harbour Grace, Newfoundland. He emphasizes easily-overlooked details in the house to speak about its history and former occupants.
The Sir Wilfred Grenfell College Art Gallery is open to the public Monday to Saturday from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. Group tours are available on request.