Monday, September 11, 2017

MCOTW: Canada -- off to France!

If you want to see the SAQA exhibit My Corner of the World: Canada sometime in the next year, you'll have to travel to France to do it.  As SAQA member Bethany Garner has just reported on the SAQA Central Canada blog, here are the four venues in France where the work of les canadiennes will be showing:

Exhibition sites in France during 2017-18


LINK for exploring the site:


Catalogue available!

SAQA Western Canada artists represented in MCOTW: Canada
Terry Aske
Margaret Blank
Jaynie Himsl
Paula Jolly
Marie McEachern
Mardell Rampton
Janet Scruggs

Congratulations to all the participants!

Wednesday, September 6, 2017

SAQA's Annual Online Benefit Auction 2017: SAQA WC is There!

In just a bit more than a week, SAQA opens its 2017 Online Benefit Auction, with it's "Diamond Day, September 15th.  At 2 p.m. Eastern Time on that day, all the pieces will be up for purchase for $1,000 USD each!

Those not sold on Diamond Day will proceed to the weekly auction, starting with Section 1 at 2 p.m. Eastern Time on Monday, September 18.

This year, nine SAQA WC members have contributed to the Auction:

On offer in Section 2

On offer in Section 1

On offer in Section 3

On offer in Section 3

On offer in Section 1

On offer in Section 2

On offer in Section 2

On offer in Section 3

On offer in Section 1

Thanks to you all for contributing your time and talent to SAQA's fund-raising efforts!  Funds raised go, in part, to ensuring that the art quilts created in "our corner of the world" travel abroad, secure and insured, to educate people everywhere about the power and beauty of the studio art quilt.  😊

Sunday, September 3, 2017

Meanwhile in Calgary...

Just opened in Calgary -- through mid-September, so catch it quickly while you can!

Contextural describes itself thus:

Contextural is a community of textile artists fostering a cooperative creative environment in support of the production of artistic works. Contextural contributes to the artistic advancement of our members through access to a collaborative working environment, professional development and the exhibition of new work.

This particular exhibit is the group's annual show of work done during its summer residency at the Alberta College of Art and Design (ACAD).  Several SAQA Western Canada members belong to Contextural -- Diane Duncan,  Terri Illingworth, Wendy Klotz, Lorraine Ross and Lynda Williamson.  However, as of this writing, their participation in this year's exhibit is unconfirmed, for which I apologize.  (If one of these gals can elucidate in the comments or by e-mail to me, I'd appreciate it!)

Sunday, August 27, 2017

Opening in Kamloops in September!

SAQA WC Artists are once again front and centre in the latest FAN Exhibit...this time in Kamloops at the Kamloops Art Centre Main Gallery in the Old Courthouse Cultural Centre...

Thanks to member Valerie Wilson (Co-Rep, MB/SK) for passing on this poster via her Facebook feed.   In addition to Valerie (a slice of her piece, Maple Keys, is shown on the right, above), the following SAQA Western Canada members are participating in this beautiful display of all things botanical:

Terry Aske, Diana Bartelings, Janet Bednarczyk, Paulette Cornish, Alison Dean Cowitz, Margie Davidson, Donna-Fay Digance, Diane Duncan (a slice of her piece, Cherry Blossoms, is on the left, above), Robin Fischer, Victoria Gray, Jaynie Himsl, Linda Ingham, Karen Johnson, Judy Leslie, Karlie McChesney, Linda MacKay, Judi MacLeod, Marie McEachern, Pippa Moore, Jenny Perry, Terry Phillips, Dawn Piasta, Katie Stein Sather, Janet Scruggs, Susan Selby, Patt Wilson and Mary Wilton.

If you cannot see it in person, you can see this exhibit on line at the FAN website, HERE.  Enjoy!

Tuesday, August 22, 2017

Camrose Art Walk 2017

Once again Camrose member Mary Wilton is part of the Annual Art Walk in Camrose, Alberta -- and you have just a few weeks left to catch this varied exhibit in this lovely Central Alberta city.

Yes -- that's Mary on the cover of this year's Art Walk brochure.  In the centre is her husband, Terry, whose photography is also on exhibit, and to the right is their colleague, Jim Brager.

Yours truly had the pleasure of visiting the assorted venues with Mary about ten days ago, so I'm happy to share just a taste of her work on display, in case you can't get to Camrose to see it for yourself...

Manitoba Thanksgiving
Wet felting, free-motion quilting,
mounted on artist's canvas

Autumn Birches
Painted whole-cloth, glue resist
fused applique, free-motion quilting

Top: Ontario Summer
Bottom: Newfoundland Sunrise
Wet felting, free-motion quilting
mounted on artist's canvas

The Art Walk runs through September 5, 2017 at various venues around Camrose.  Downtown Camrose is ideal for strolling -- with galleries, an art supply shop, a large quilt shop, and some very good eateries: perfect for an Artist's Date!

Thursday, August 10, 2017

"Bridges" in Calgary!

The Alberta Society of Artists is celebrating 85 years with a special exhibit, entitled "Bridges" -- and two of the featured artists are SAQA members from Alberta: Barbara J. West and Ilse Anysas-Salkauskas.

September 1-30, 2017
 616 Macleod Trail S.E., Calgary.
Reception: Thursday, September 7, 2017
An informal guided tour begins at 7:30 p.m.

If you have an opportunity to visit the library in September, do be sure to take in this special exhibit!

Monday, August 7, 2017

Making Her Mark

Photo: courtesy of Saanich News
Susan Purney Mark of Victoria, B.C. is at it again!  She gave us a wonderful workshop on mark-making at our Regional Retreat in May, and she's been carrying on ever since.  This coming weekend she'll be at it again.

Thanks to B.C. colleague, Andree Fredette, for sharing on Facebook that Susan will be making more marks on August 13 when she goes to the annual Bower Creek Brush-up in Oak Bay, B.C.   She'll be one of three dozen artists in the park that day, sharing their work with the public.  The event runs from 11 a.m. through 4:30 p.m. at 1700 Hampshire Road, Oak Bay, B.C.

If you're in the area, do drop by and say "Hi!"  
Make some marks!  You might just get hooked -- like I did!  

Wall - Margaret Blank (c) 2017
12" square
Materials: Kona cotton, other commercial fabric
and hand-dyed linen, fabric paint, polyester thread,
poly-cotton batting, embroidery floss.
Techniques: mark-making, stamping,
machine quilting, "big stitch" hand quilting.

Friday, August 4, 2017

A Moment in Time: Reprise

Valerie Wilson's exhibit, A Moment in Time, which debuted at the Portage and District Arts Centre in the spring of 2016, is returning!

This time, the venue is the Dalnavert Museum in Winnipeg.  The site bills itself as "small mansion, big history" -- and should prove to be the perfect location for Val's unique artwork, which focuses on recreating figures from the past with fabric and stitch.

The exhibit opens on Wednesday, August 16 and runs through September 15 at the Visitor Centre of the Museum.  No mention of an Artist's Talk or Opening Reception...perhaps Val will fill us in?  😉  And...she did!  

Opening Reception
September 1, 2017
7 - 9 p.m.
Artist's Talk: 8 p.m.

If you're in the Winnipeg area or travelling there this month, be sure to take in this very special exhibit!

Monday, July 31, 2017

And Now He-e-e-ere's...Jennie!

In my last post I briefly introduced you to our new SAQA Co-Rep for B.C., Jennie Johnston.

Jennie at LaConner, 2016
with her piece, Beryl
This past week Jennie sent me some information about herself and a few photos of her work.  When she wrote, she'd just returned from a holiday to visit family in Quebec.  Although we hail from different parts of that Province, I felt an immediate connection, and am delighted to report that at last here she is -- Jennie, in her own words:

Hello, everyone.  Margaret kindly asked me to prepare a small introduction about myself for the blog.
Currently I live in Burnaby, British Columbia, a suburb of Vancouver.  I have lived here for the last 16 years and have fully converted to the west coast life style.  I live with my husband and two sons, ages 9 and 6. I was at home with my boys full time until I started working part time this spring at a House Museum called Mackin House in Coquitlam BC.
I grew up in rural Quebec, in a small English language pocket called the Eastern Townships. My family has a dairy and maple syrup farm. Growing up there was idyllic and I am very drawn to nature and have a strong current of ancestral lines running through my work.
My grandmother is a quilter and both my mother and aunt are avid crafters/makers. Growing up around creativity was imperative to my development as an artist.  Along with the wanderlust that continues to compel me travel, I attended university in New Brunswick at Mount Allison University where I earned a Bachelor of Fine Arts Degree. In my last year of school, I finally realized that I wanted to sew more than paint and that greatly influenced the arc of my work. 
I was a member of the Vancouver Quilt Guild for several years but found getting to meetings very hard once my first son was born.  It was through the transformation of motherhood that I began developing my quilt work and found the layering of techniques that I use today including photo transfer, painting, embroidery and quilting.  Most of my work is done by hand because I prefer the level of intimacy that hand stitch offers.  Finding SAQA was a great boost to my sense of community.  I think the struggle between the art/craft dichotomy is important to break down in the art community.  I see that happening slowly and SAQA is working to make quilts receive their due as objects capable of bridging art and craft perfectly.
I wish to thank Margaret very much for taking on the editing of our SAQA Western Canada blog. And I will be sending out the newsletter each month. You can make sure that you are opted in to receive those emails through your SAQA membership account. To find out more about me, my work, and connect on social media please visit my website and I look forward to hearing from each of you about how we can make our region more enriching for everyone. 

Jennie in the Yellow Dining Room
at the home of Claude Monet, Giverny, France, 2016

Jennie and company at the Round House
Community Centre, featuring her installation,
Lifelines, in the Window Gallery - 2013

As  you know, it seems that most Reps/Co-Reps have a vision to accomplish something during their tenure.  For Patti Morris (Alberta) and Jill Sullivan (B.C.), it was collaborating to create exhibits of members' work that toured the Region, ending with the Burgess Shale Project that now lives at the Burgess Shale Interpretive Centre in B.C.  For Katie Stein Sather in B.C., it was bringing a 25th Anniversary Trunk Show tour to the Region.  For yours truly in Alberta, it was helping tour that Trunk, educating traditional quilters about art quilts at Quilt Canada in Lethbridge (2015) and expanding communication through the blog and regular newsletters.  For Val Wilson (MB/SK) and Coleen Adderley (B.C.) it was bringing us our first Regional Retreat.

Jennie has already embraced the idea of having another Trunk Tour -- as part of a Canada-wide initiative that will be starting Down East and heading West.  In addition, the West Coast Regions of the U.S. want to include Western Canada in a multi-Regional Exhibit.  Be sure to read Jennie's future newsletters all the way to the bottom 😉 to be sure you don't miss out on any details of these projects, and whatever else she has up her sleeve.

Desi Vaughn,
SAQA Reps Co-ordinator 
Valerie Wilson,
And please -- if you live in Alberta or Manitoba/Saskatchewan -- those parts of the Regions need closer representation with SAQA -- and Jennie will soon need help!

If you are interested in taking on a two-year term as a Co-Rep for SAQA based in Alberta or MB/SK, please contact Valerie Wilson (outgoing, MB/SK) or Jennie (B.C.) -- or the main SAQA Reps Co-ordinator, Desi Vaughn -- sooner rather than later!

And thank you for your support!

Monday, July 17, 2017

Back -- with Exhibit News!

Hello again, SAQA Western Canada members and WC blog readers far and near!  I am delighted to be back editting the SAQA WC blog -- though not in my former capacity as Alberta Co-Rep.  No; that position remains up for grabs -- and Val Wilson will be finishing her tenure in MB/SK very soon so...(hint, hint, hint...)

Jennie working in her studio
First, WELCOME aboard to the new SAQA Co-Rep for B.C., Jennie Johnston of Burnaby.  Watch this space for a bit of a profile on Jennie in the near future.

And of a new exhibit!

archiTEXTURE: Hard Edges in a Soft Medium opens August 7, 2017 in the Community Art Space on the 3rd Floor of the Anvil Centre, 777 Columbia Street, New Westminster, B.C., and runs through October 2, 2017.  Regular gallery hours are Monday - Sunday, 10:00 a.m. - 5 p.m. and Thursday, 10 a.m. - 8 p.m.

The Opening Reception is Friday, August 11 from 5:00 - 7:00 p.m., in conjunction with the New West Cultural Crawl that runs over that weekend.

Featured Artists: 

Terry, Mardell and Judy are all SAQA members -- those at the first WC Regional Retreat in May will remember Judy's in-depth, informative and fun seminar on colour.  Among other accomplishments, Terry and Mardell both have pieces currently touring with My Corner of the World: Canada.

The title is intriguing...the artists are talented...if you live in or will be visiting the area in August or September, be sure to take in "archiTEXTURE"!

***   ***   ***

A closing note:  if you have news -- your work, an upcoming exhibit, an award for work or and entry accepted into a show, for example --  to share with your colleagues in the Region, across Canada and around the world, please contact your co-rep or contact me directly, and I'll be happy to post it here! -- Margaret Blank, Mirror, AB - Editor, SAQA WC Blog.