Last month, the Artists’ Co-op hosted a high school juried art exhibit in our Legacy Gallery. The work shown was extremely diverse. I am not sure how many of these young artists will pursue a career in art, but viewing the work made me think about the journey in the arts that landed me in the sweet spot I inhabit today.
My parents always encouraged me to explore my creative side, particularly my father, who taught me to screen print, develop my own photographs, spin, and weave. For an Air Force pilot, he was a true renaissance man. I was always told how talented I was, therefore, I assumed that I was and my path lay in the arts. I took art every year in high school, but suffered a severe speed bump when I pursued a higher education at Georgian College in 1984. One fork in the road led to a life as a painterly artist, the other a career in design and graphic arts. Neither of these practices were my strength, and seeing no other option, I waited until April…then took the off ramp. It took me several years to discover that my true passion lay in metal arts. As a youngster, crafts were never presented as a career choice, therefore I presumed my options in the creative field were limited. In 2016, there are more opportunities to explore arts and crafts in the schools, but I never miss an opportunity to let students know that there is a major highway of options in the art map. I always accept invitations to talk to elementary and secondary classes about arts and crafts, and take props in the form of mugs, bowls, clocks, glasses, clothing, utensils, pepper grinders and the likes that have been created from start to finish by my peers. Look at all the amazing prospects there are in the world of art and craft!
Ofra Svorai and David Robinson understand the voyage. Both have had their own separate journeys down the artist’s path and will explore this theme with “Art Road”, their exhibition in the Legacy Gallery for the month of May. The title of the show can mean an actual road, or a trail or open water, or an imaginative direction. Both Ofra and Dave have shared paths during many years of canoe tripping, cycling, skiing and hiking, and they are excited to exhibit new work, representative of recent travels. They used watercolour and drawing while spending time camping, and brought those images to the studio, developing them into larger canvases.
Our guest artist program speeds along with paintings by Cameron Donsberger and Ian Cochrane, and jewellery and objects by Cheryl Sims.