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Art for Art’s Sake – Peig Abbott, sculptor – The Kingston Whig-Standard



Canmore sculptor Peig Abbott takes a break in her Elk Run studio. photo by Pam Doyle/


Peig Abbott loves the process of sculpture.

Various stone, metal, clay and bronze pieces adorn her Canmore studio, which she opened in 2010. Originally from Montreal, she has lived in the Bow Valley since 2008.

Abbott believes art can help to relieve some of the stress caused by Covid-19 and the restrictions the Coronavirus has placed on daily life.

“Art is a way to healing on an individual and collective level. I feel a lot of people are displaced right now. No routine, along with fear and unknown circumstances have thrown everyone and everything off balance,” Abbott said. “Art seems to provide a ground to this instability, be it music, dance, literature, films, visual arts, etc.”

Art brings the global community together through various digital platforms, she said.

“It helps lift spirits, engage, and inspire. It helps us to touch base with and rebuild our humanness,” Abbott said. “Historically, whenever there has been mass disruption in the flow of being, be it disease, economic collapse, environmental catastrophes, warfare, etc., art and culture has always been the backbone of what has helped humanity heal.”

Public art can inspire.

“Because public art tends to be larger and more interactive for people to engage with, I believe it helps stimulate curiosity and conversation,” Abbott said. “It bridges connection and has the power to illuminate and transform beliefs, patterns, and consciousness. I believe viewing art helps bring the mind to the present and release the spiral the mind can trap us in. If the viewer allows themselves to take time and investigate the form and material before them, that curiosity can be an incredible gift of insight.”

She makes art from a variety of materials.

“As I have evolved as an artist, I began making work that explored my need to expand my knowledge of both the materials I was using, as well as my process to dig deeper into understanding my self,” Abbott said. “Many years later, I now have a strong desire and drive for my art to be of service for people, communities, and that of the greater good.
Art enhances life.

“I strongly believe art is a mirror for the viewer,” she said. “It can take them on a journey to explore and reflect diverse layers of perspective and consciousness of both personal and universal conditions.”

Her work is for sale in her studio in the Elk Run Industrial Park and offered in galleries. She has an installation in a group exhibition called Transitions, currently showing at artsPlace.

“I create both abstract and representational forms using primarily natural materials such as stone, clay, bronze and metal,” Abbott said. “However, I am open to the creative process and whatever materials needed to capture the right essence for the work.”

She fills these strange days adhering to the restrictions set forth due to the Coronavirus by doing yoga, meditation, reading, writing, sketching, walking and listening to the silence.

“Personally I find anything that involves the creative process meditating. It helps bring me back to the present moment,” she said.

Right now no one is sure what the future will bring but she hopes her art will be a part of it.

“I would like to start creating a bridge for my art to be more in the public sphere,” Abbott said. “It is something that both terrifies and inspires me but I know it is where a lot of my work belongs.”

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Dan Fumano: Questions, shock as art studio's death blamed on COVID-19 – Vancouver Sun



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The landlords had offered to waive some of the rent to support William Clark Studios’ application for federal assistance, Chiang said, although it seems the studio may not qualify for that program. The landlord also offered to defer half the rent until “an undetermined time,” Chiang said, but did not get a response from William Clark.

“We understand small businesses are having a tough time during the pandemic and we are trying to help out as much as we can,” Chiang said. “Now I’m finding out they’ve told their tenants over the weekend that they’re getting kicked out. It’s weird, I don’t know.”

The city is also stepping in to see if there’s anything they can do to help save William Clark.

Alix Sales, Vancouver’s head of cultural spaces and infrastructure, said Wednesday her team has been working to track down both the landlords and William Clark management since learning Monday about the “brutal” closure.

“It’s such a big blow, it’s such a critical space,” Sales said.

Sales and her colleague, cultural planner Kristen Lambertson, agreed some of the details and questions surrounding the William Clark closure make it an unusual one.

But, Lambertson pointed out: “We’re also in a very unusual time.”

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Smithers Art Gallery and Bulkley Valley Museum now open to the public – My Bulkley Lakes Now



The Smithers Art Gallery and The Bulkley Valley Museum have reopened to the public.

As of Monday(June 1), the gallery and the museum have opened and will be operating Monday to Friday from 12 p.m. until 4 p.m.

According to Smithers Art Gallery Manager Nicole Chernish, the planned exhibitions have been postponed until 2021 but artists who were invited to have exhibitions this year to provide work in a pop-up gallery.

Artists that will be featured in the gallery are Sarah Zimmerman, Mark Tworow, and Emily Klassen.

Chernish said getting the gallery ready for reopening was nerve-racking but now that they are open it feels amazing.

“It feels absolutely fantastic. We’ve got all this fantastic art on the walls and it just feels really refreshing and satisfying to have that visual art surrounding me so I can’t wait until we have more people come in and experience that for themselves,” she said.

Chernish added on the first day of the reopening the gallery had six people walkthrough.

She called it fantastic due to having a max capacity of five people for the building.

According to Chernish, during the gallery’s closure, they moved a lot of their content online, so they could still interact with the community.

Chernish said having the virtual exhibitions was difficult because they haven’t done a lot of them on their own.

“I think people are able to access it but it doesn’t feel quite the same as coming into a gallery and seeing a piece of art right in front of you so, I think it’s been an adjustment not only for the gallery but for visitors as well,” she said.

The Lakes District Museum is also open and the Witset Museum is set to open on Friday (June 5).

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Local artists participating in upcoming national arts drive – OrilliaMatters



On June 20, many creatives in our area are participating in a country-wide National Arts Drive, organized by RAW Artists and Orillia native Michelle Bylow. This event was originally scheduled for June 5, but has been moved to later in the month.

Creatives in all areas —art, music, performing arts, film, fashion, photography, craft, beauty — as well as cultural institutions and local restaurants nation-wide are invited to showcase their work to a driving, socially distanced audience for attention, tips, and hopefully sales.

Local musician Olivia Duck will be participating, along with various other drop-in members of the band, Hobo Jam.

“We will be located at 77 Lewis Drive in Orillia. It will be a Hobo Jam collective performance featuring myself, Jakob Pierce, Jamie Drake, and Dennis Rizzo. Perhaps other drop-in musicians as well. We will do a variety of music which will be jammed out as we aren’t officially rehearsing at this time for obvious reasons,” said Duck.

Several artists and galleries along Peter Street between Mississaga and Colborne streets will be out, including Patti Agapi, MJ Pollak and Molly Farquharson from Hibernation Arts.

“We will have tables out showcasing our art, and of course participants are welcome to stop, park, and safely come into the gallery to view and purchase,” Farquharson said.

RAW artists executive director Bylow is excited about this first-time event.

“We have expanded the event to include local eateries and food trucks,” Bylow said. “We have partnered with the Orillia District Arts Council to spread the word to local artists.”

Anitta Hamming’s Creative Nomad Studios will also be participating, through the gallery’s 2020 Unlimited show, on display now in the windows of the gallery.

She said “2020 Unlimited is all set up for an event like this. We have over 30 works of art in the windows of the gallery and drivers can safely purchase through our website. We hope to see lots of drivers out and are excited to be part of this event,” said Hamming.

The event will be live in our area on June 20 from 4 to 7 p.m., and the map will go live the night before. There is also an app you can download. For this and other information about the National Arts Drive, go to their website.

Would you like to support art and an important cultural institution in our town? Orillia Museum of Arts and History’s (OMAH) online art auction, QuarARTine is now live!

This auction will run from now until the end of September. Twenty new pieces of 6-inch by 6-inch art will be posted every 20 days. You can purchase art outright for $30 or bid on it and see how high it goes!

All proceeds will go towards OMAH which of course is suffering in these pandemic times. Many items of the first 20 are already sold, only three days in, so check in often to get your first choice. For more information and to bid, go here.

This week’s Essential Concert series will feature Sean and Bayze Murray, of the local band, Reay. Reay’s debut single, Lemondrop Girl, is available for download and you can purchase the band’s debut album, Butterfly Tongue Revisited, here

Tune in to listen to Sean and Bayze live on the Essential Concert series this Thursday at 8 p.m. here.

Local dance therapist Miriam Goldberger is involved in an amazing event this week to celebrate Seniors’ Month. Young at Art presents Golden Hour this Thursday June 4 from 2 to 3 p.m. This is a virtual interactive event for older adults, presented through Zoom.

There will be an interactive sing-a-long with music therapist Thyra Andrews, an improv dance with Miriam, and a co-created art experience with Tonya Hart. You can get your Zoom invite by emailing Enjoy!

Have a sunny first weekend in June and send me your arts news by Tuesday at noon, to

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