Art Windsor-Essex has helped turn St. Clair College’s main campus into an outdoor art gallery.
Local art collector and philanthropist Stephanie Zekelman selected eleven works by eight artists to be placed throughout St. Clair’s main campus in the latest edition of Look Again! Outside, join various outdoor artwork located throughout downtown Windsor and nearby Amherstburg.
“It wasn’t a decision, and it was the only decision – St. Clair was the only place to do it,” Stephanie Zekelman said about selecting St. Clair for the outdoor art gallery. “Esthetics are very important to me, and I collect art, and I wanted to bring that art to the students at St. Clair and the entire community. We decided to go with modern art because it is a modern, young environment here, and we wanted to bring that kind of energy. So that’s why we chose this location. It’s something different than in downtown Windsor or Amherstburg.”
Look Again! Outside: St. Clair College will be on display for several years. Canadian and international artists featured in Look Again! Outside: St. Clair College includes Marcel Barbeau, Jack Bush, Allyson Clay, John Kissick, Rita Letendre, Jahan Maka, Gordon Rayner, Takao Tanabe, and Victor Vasarely. The artwork on display intends to enrich the experience of walking around campus, and viewers are encouraged to engage with the displays to consider new perspectives and ways of thinking. The 11 original works are strategically located throughout the main campus in South Windsor and walking areas for students, staff and the community to enjoy.
Stephanie Zekelman believes the large reproductions will bring bold colour and abstract shapes to public spaces and walking paths across campus, provoking thought and sparking new conversations.
“I think art makes you yearn for more. Maybe you will dig deeper into these artists and visit AWE. Maybe this can become someone’s passion, too,” Stephanie Zekelman said. “As the College campus grows, we hope this will grow as well. I hope to see this grow and evolve in the future and maybe bring some sculptural element to it as well.”
Several St. Clair College students, staff and faculty were involved in producing this unique project, including the design, planning, fabrication, and installation. Frames for the reproductions were fabricated using Atlas Tube Steel.
“This project is assembled with passion, intelligence, and remarkable vision,” said AWE’s Executive Director, Jennifer Matotek. “On behalf of Art Windsor-Essex, I want to express my gratitude to the Zekelman Foundation and everyone involved at St. Clair College. Their thoughtful collaboration is aligned with our mission to present the creative work of artists in multifaceted ways, keeping public art and curiosity alive.”
Look Again! Outside: St. Clair College was made possible by a donation from the Stephanie and Barry Zekelman Foundation, Ontario Trillium Foundation, and with the support of St. Clair College. Established in 1943, Art Windsor-Essex is the largest public art gallery in Southwestern Ontario. With a permanent collection of over 4,00 artworks, AWE shares Canadian, Indigenous, and contemporary art with the Windsor-Essex community.
‘Amazing’ art, dance program a hit for local seniors (3 photos)
The Orillia and District Arts Council (ODAC) has married dance, visual art, and art history in a comprehensive new arts program created specifically for local seniors.
The HeARTS (Helping Elders with ARTS) program is held every Tuesday and Thursday at St. James’ Anglican Church; the goal is to get participants’ bodies moving before trying their hand at various disciplines of art.
The 26-week program began in September after ODAC secured federal government funding earlier this year, and each lesson includes a dance component, supplementary lectures on the session’s artistic theme, and — of course — the opportunity to create art.
Organizers offer a wide-ranging variety of programming and artistic styles for the participants to learn about, ranging from Picasso-inspired self portraits, to re-creations of Vincent Van Gogh’s ‘Starry Night’, Japanese Suminigashi marbling, and more.
An “intelligent” approach was brought to the program, organizers say, adding they hope to give seniors legitimate opportunities to explore their artistic sides, as well as the opportunity to self-reflect.
“It (isn’t) juvenile, like arts and crafts. We wanted to do something intelligent and fresh, and have something that seniors could be excited to come to weekly,” said HeARTS art facilitator Sukhi Kaur.
“They’re taken on a journey of self-reflection that they get to explore through different art techniques, and different artists and activities,” Kaur said. “By the end, they’ll hopefully create a small body of work that represents their time here, as well as connecting to the memories that the art prompts are supposed to bring up, and they have the opportunity to share that with new people.”
Each session’s programming is designed to tie into a specific theme, Kaur said, noting those themes are guided by participant feedback. For example, a dance session based in mirroring was included with a lecture on Picasso before participants painted their own self portraits.
A variety of guest artists — and even a harp player during the Vincent Van Gogh session — have been brought to the program to enrich its sessions.
Above all, however, the program offers the opportunity for seniors to have fun and socialize.
“We were hoping that it would be an opportunity post-COVID for seniors to socialize,” Kaur said. “They come here for art, and they come here for dance, but they get to talk about their week. There’s been some new friendships made here that I’ve got to watch flourish over the weeks.”
The idea is catching on.
“Our board made a decision some time back that we wanted to be more socially involved with vulnerable or underrepresented groups, and we thought seniors would be a good fit,” said ODAC board secretary Christine Hager.
“It was a slow start … but now it’s catching people by word of mouth. They are telling other people what’s going on here, and they’re having a lot of fun — that’s the main thing.”
So far, the program has been a success, with one participant celebrating it as “an amazing get together for seniors” that got her out of a rut through COVID-19.
“It gives us something to look forward to, shows us our cognitive abilities, and motivates us to do better than we thought we could do,” said Donna Howlett.
“I love the dance class — just hearing the music has brought me back to my childhood, and the art class is so interesting. I did not know that I had some talent there,” said Maryann Van Arem.
Miriam Goldberger, the program’s dance instructor, said she enthusiastically joined the program when she learned it would incorporate multiple styles of art, and highlighted the importance of movement for both physical health and creating the right mindset to engage with art.
“Movement and physical activity prevent serious physical and mental and emotional decline of seniors,” she explained. “It also really lubricates all the creativity and the social goals that happen with the other part of the program.”
“They’re relaxed, they’re comfortable with themselves, they’re feeling positive,” she said. “They’re open to new things.”
Beyond offering arts programming to seniors, the HeARTS program also serves as a placement opportunity for Georgian College Social Service Worker students.
Program volunteer Joan Berndt said the addition of these students is “incredibly beneficial” to breaking down stigma surrounding seniors.
“The addition of social work students is incredibly beneficial because they don’t get frontline experience when they’re in school,” Berndt said. “They learn about seniors, (and) there is a discrimination in some younger people, that they don’t want to work for seniors, but they’re meeting some fabulous seniors, and it’s working.”
The HeARTS program is offered to local seniors free of charge. It takes place at St. James’ Anglican Church, every Tuesday and Thursday, with a drop-in session from 11 a.m. to 12:45 p.m., with dance and arts programming taking place from 1 p.m. to 3:45 p.m.
Organizers are hoping to secure funding to continue the program following its current 26-week run.
Christmas-themed “One Man Art Show” at Evergreen Park
This will be his second show in the Chuckwagon room at the TARA Centre, which he thoroughly enjoys, having fallen in love with it during his last show in the fall.
” It’s so perfect (Evergreen Park) has so much room there to park and the room is just the perfect size, and like you said the light shows out there and stuff, the whole thing has such a nice Christmas feel to it, they’ve had so many events over there lately here with the Christmas theme. It just fits in perfectly, again, with my niche and stuff I couldn’t imagine a better location to do this,” said McCaffrey.
He does expect a bigger crowd for this time round after his last “One Man Art Show” took place at the start of hunting season, which is a big chunk of his target demographic.
“They’ll be a little bit of new stuff, but mostly stuff that was already there in September, but there were a lot of people that didn’t get a chance to come to the show in September because of hunting season and different stuff like that, and I thought Christmas would be another opportunity for those people to come out.”
McCaffrey says among the stuff he’s bringing back from the September show is a piece not for sale. It is a portrait of his granddaughter that he enjoys and just likes to show off to the community.
McCaffrey’s “One Man Art Show” runs December 7, and 8, starting at noon until 9 p.m. both days, at Evergreen Park in the TARA Centre, inside of the Chuckwagon Room.
If you want to browse McCaffrey’s collection online, click here.
The Ottawa Art Gallery and The Ottawa Hospital select winners of the TRIAS Art Prize
OTTAWA – December 6, 2022 – The Ottawa Art Gallery (OAG) and The Ottawa Hospital (TOH) have selected the winners of the 2022 TRIAS Art Prize. This included five prizes in three categories.
- Art and Science Residency winner: Svetlana Swinimer
- Indigenous and Inuit Healing Art Award winner: Koomuatuk (Kuzy) Curley, Sikusilingmiut
- Honourable Mention: Christine Toulouse, Courage
- Art as Healing winner: Andrew Morrow, Neither Brightly Lit Nor Completely Enlightened
- Honourable Mention: Jovita Akahome, Soul
TRIAS Art Prize is a juried art competition that intersects art, science, medicine, and community. All winning artwork will be displayed at The Ottawa Hospital with the aim of enhancing care through restorative art, engaging the community, and supporting artists from Ottawa, Eastern Ontario, Western Quebec, and Nunavut.
“They say all good things come in threes and the TRIAS Art Prize program is no exception, bringing together Art, Health and Community, through three great prize categories, that demonstrate the power of working together to bring about positive change. We are appreciative of the artists who submitted and of the jury who were challenged to choose from over 130 applications!” expressed Alexandra Badzak, Director and Chief Executive Officer at the Ottawa Art Gallery.
“We are grateful to our partners at the OAG for the opportunity to combine art, science, and medicine to help us create a hospital environment that is reflective of the diverse community we serve while showcasing TOH’s core values of research, medical care, and healing,” said Joanne Read, Chief Planning and Development Officer at The Ottawa Hospital. “Congratulations to the winners of this year’s TRIAS Art Prize.”
TRIAS Art Award is part of the Creative Wellbeing program, a city-building initiative connecting artists and communities with hospital researchers and clinicians to create original works of art to enhance hospital spaces. Creative Wellbeing aims to increase awareness of patient care at The Ottawa Hospital, incorporate art as part of the patient experience, and further develop art as therapy programming.
Ottawa residents Jennifer Toby and Dr. François Auclair, who have been integral to Creative Wellbeing since its inception, have provided the inaugural funding for the awards. The Indigenous and Inuit Healing Art Honourable Mention prize is provided by The Lawson Foundation.
For media inquiries or to book an interview:
Ottawa Art Gallery:
Officer, Media, Public and Francophone Relations
The Ottawa Hospital:
Media Relations Officer
About the Ottawa Art Gallery (OAG)
The Ottawa Art Gallery is situated on traditional Anishinābe Aki and is Ottawa’s municipal art gallery and cultural hub. Located in Ottawa’s downtown core, the expanded Gallery is a contemporary luminous cube designed by KPMB Architects and Régis Côté et associés.
About The Ottawa Hospital (TOH)
The Ottawa Hospital is committed to providing each patient with the world-class care, exceptional service and compassion that they would want for their loved ones. Over their three campuses, they serve tens of thousands of patients in Ottawa and the surrounding area each year. They rank 5th in Canada for total research funding and published over 2,200 research papers in 2019. As one of the largest research hospitals throughout the country, they are constantly innovating and providing new insight into the healthcare sector.
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