Saturday, July 12, 2008

July Exhibition

I had a number of wonderful chance meetings throughout my day yesterday. One of them was with a staff member of the Central Library. She had explained that the artist who was scheduled to display for the month of July had cancelled at the last minute. I was asked to cover the wall on the second floor with my artwork. This made me very happy.

Next month is the beginning of my year long art tour and now it is beginning a month early. I spent a few hours yesterday hanging some paintings and today I finished the job. There is a small table beside the display with FREE peace stik-ers for anyone who comes to visit my artwork. Enjoy the show!

To find out more about my art tour check out this previous blog entry -

Some of the artwork dates back to 1996 when I first became an artist and there also are some new paintings that I have created during the spring of this year. ‘Window of Opportunity’ is one of my most recent paintings.

Window Of Opportunity

During the late summer of 2006, I visited a small community in Canada’s newest territory to find inspiration from a people with an ancient history. Although Rankin Inlet, Nunavut is a relatively new community, many of the people are descendants of the indigenous Inuit natives who have lived throughout this region for many millennia.

I met a young Inuit artist who took me to see the landscapes surrounding the town. He pointed to a high lookout that is used by hunters to track the migrating herds before we continued past an ancient burial sight. We traveled on to a place where the Inuit used to live before “Everyone started showing up here.” We walked to the mouth of a shallow river that was just about to join the Arctic Ocean and my companion told me that many generations of his people had fished here. I touched the water and suddenly I could see in the calm reflection, a day of bounty and abundance that may have occurred during a time not so long ago.

Our journey took us to an example of Inuit architecture. This structure has a dug out floor six inches below the ground with thick walls constructed with many layers of moss. Caribou bones were used as rafters and the leather hides were stretched over the roof and the gable ends. These structures used to dot our northern landscapes. This example that I sat inside of was the only one in the entire area. My friend told me that he is concerned because there are fewer and fewer memories of these ancient ways remaining.

The afternoon sun shone brightly onto the caribou hides and I marveled at all the contrasting textures that I saw. While I snapped a couple of photographs I made the comment that these could be the oldest windows in the world. They kept the rain, wind and snow out, while allowing the light to come in and add warmth to the dwelling. This painting was inspired by the textures that I saw that afternoon. The opportunity that I refer to in the title speaks of our ability to realize that the ancient wisdom of our elders will help us to create a brighter future for our world.

Before fast food drive thru, clear cut forestlands, styrofoam packaging, nuclear bombs, subdivisions with green painted rocks for lawns and expanding deserts, another kind of people inhabited this Earth. With lives filled with science, architecture, art, fashion, medicine, sport and entertainment, indigenous natives have thrived by respecting the heartbeat of life, enabling them to live in harmony for the benefit of their environment.

Our ability to shape a peaceful future is still possible if we continue to recognize all the windows of opportunity the surround us throughout our lives.


I hope to pick up my camping photos today and I imagine I’ll write a story or two to share with you in my blogs next week. Joanne and I also hope to do a bit of strawberry picking this weekend. Three years ago we bought a small freezer and we fill it, during the summer, with lots and lots of berries and vegetables. Our freezer lets us enjoy all these wonderful foods throughout the entire winter. There’s nothing better to warm the winter belly than blueberry pancakes in January with three feet of snow outside your door.

Until next week,


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