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Downtown Chatham art crawl returns March 25 – West Lorne Chronicle

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For the first time in over two years, municipal art galleries are inviting people to downtown Chatham to hop between storefronts to look at art and speak with local artists.

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The Thames Art Gallery and ARTspace have organized a Spring Mini-Art Crawl for March 25 from 6 p.m. to 9 p.m. Along with the two galleries, the Art and Heirloom Shoppe, William Street Café and The Co. will be welcoming visitors during the evening.

The last mini art crawl was held in January 2020.

“We have had art crawls in the past where everybody gathers in one spot and then we travel from venue to venue and we have a band and different things going on,” said Phil Vanderwall, Thames Art Gallery curator.

“With COVID, we’re a bit uncertain about that, so we’re doing a mini-crawl where all of the different venues are open at the same time.”

Vanderwall said everyone will be issued a passport to be stamped at all five locations. Passports can be picked up at any of the venues the night of the event. There will be a draw for $100 at 8:30 p.m. at the Thames Art Gallery open to those who have all five stamps.

Local artist Michaela Lucio will be at ARTspace to speak about her exhibit, A Small Good Thing. The King Street West gallery also has a community initiative called We Are Family in the window display, which features family photos submitted by the public.

Down the street is the Art and Heirloom Shoppe, which hosts works of 51 area artists. The site is currently featuring an exhibit from fibre artist Jodie Edwards Wright and an International Women’s Day Exhibit called Women in Power.

The Co., at 208 Queen St., will be featuring its resident artist Iain Rice, a photographer from Chatham-Kent. He specializes in fine art photography and digital art.

Photographer Michael M. Garland will be speaking at William Street Café about his exhibition called Portraits of Trees in Chatham-Kent. The café will also be serving “spring-themed” food and beverages.

The Thames Art Gallery will be host to “conversational talks and tours” related to the current exhibit featuring international artists called I’ll Be Your Mirror. All of the artists feature their parents in their work.

Vanderwall said they are planning on having another summer art crawl this year.

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Asian Heritage Society of New Brunswick holds henna art demonstration – CBC.ca

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Much has changed since Madhu Verma, the founder of the Asian Heritage Society of New Brunswick, first came to the province in 1963 as a young Indian bride.

Verma said she faced racism regularly when she first came to Canada. 

Back then, when she wore cultural clothing — such as Kurtis — her looks would elicit unwelcoming glares. 

Verma said: “They would stop me and say, ‘Oh. When did you come here? Why are you here?'”

But times are changing. 

Madhu Verma, left, is the founder of the Asian Heritage Society of New Brunswick. She hosted a henna art demonstration with the society’s chair Aruna Ghate, centre, and co-ordinator Felisa Chan. (Mrinali Anchan/CBC)

“I sometimes tell people that I am the first imported bride in North America … now things are very different. We are really enjoying with so many new immigrants, the new friends.” 

Now Verma is proud to look out at a room filled with people from different backgrounds and watch them eagerly learn about her culture. 

The Asian Heritage Society is putting on several events in honour of Asian Heritage month, including one in Fredericton on Saturday that allowed people to discover the intricacies of henna art. 

Henna — also known as mehndi in Hindi and Urdu — is a maroon dye created from the leaves of the henna tree. The dye is used to create intricate floral designs that can last up to 20 days.

The origin of the designs dates back as far as 6,000 years and is traditionally done during special events in South Asian, Middle Eastern and North African cultures.

Priyanka Panwar came to New Brunswick seven years ago.

She is part of the society and has been helping put on events like this demonstration.

For her, the passion for henna came when she won a contest in university for her henna art. 

Priyanka Panwar is an artist. She had henna art applied on her hand. (Mrinali Anchan/CBC)

Later, she spent six hours perfecting the henna tattoos on her hands and feet for her wedding. Marriage ceremonies aren’t the only special occasions where it’s used. 

“I normally do it every year during Karva Chauth, it is a day when we ladies keep fast in our Hindu religion for our husbands to have a long life.” 

For both Panwar, and especially for Verma, educating people about why they might see henna patterns adorning some people’s skin, goes hand in hand with trying to create more understanding and tolerance between cultures. 

“The message we want to give is to make new friends, have communication, go visit, see other programs and also talk to us,” Verma said. 

“If you want to ask any question about Asian culture we want to have a conversation with you.”

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Judge for yourself: Man uses art to escape 'frenetic' period – BradfordToday

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From a judge’s gavel to paint brushes, Barrie’s David Murphy has lived a unique life.

After a life spent mostly in a courtroom  first as a lawyer with a big Toronto law firm and eventually as a high court judge in the Cayman Islands  the 73-year-old is enjoying a simpler life these days spent mostly in his basement art studio. 

Born and raised in the city, Murphy says he has been painting for nearly 50 years, but it wasn’t until he started sneaking off to art classes once a week  while he was working in a large litigation firm in downtown Toronto in the 1980s  that he really began to love it.

“It sounds odd. It’s a time in your life where you’re probably the busiest, craziest and most frenetic in your career,” he tells BarrieToday. “I decided I wanted a diversion in law school and started copying Group of Seven paintings in oil just for fun.”

In 1989, Murphy moved to Hong Kong, where he spent the next seven years working as a law professor at the University of Hong Kong. And although he didn’t do a lot of painting during that time, he says he would find some time between classes to take the occasional class.

During that time, he experimented with watercolour and took classes in Chinese brush painting and art restoration. He also developed a research specialty in art law, published numerous scholarly articles on the subject, and lectured worldwide. He is also the author of a book on the legal aspects of the trade in Chinese art, published by Oxford University Press.

Murphy then moved to the Cayman Islands and spent the next four years as a high court judge, a career he admits left very little time for art.

In 2000, at the age of 51, Murphy retired and moved to Europe, where he once again picked up his paint brushes and started painting regularly. 

“I started doing a lot of shows and exhibitions in Malta,” he says, adding he always knew he’d return to Canada. 

Murphy, who returned to Barrie in 2013, says he has always been drawn to impressionists, and credits the famous Group of Seven for inspiring his own work. 

“When people think of impressionism, they typically think of European impressionist painters without really appreciating we had our own school of impressionist painters here in Canada with the Group of Seven who were fabulous,” he says. “I think it was meeting A.Y. Jackson that really inspired me (and) it was probably around that time I started really enjoying going to art galleries.

“Back in those days, McMichael Gallery in Kleinburg was just jammed with Group of Seven paintings. … It was just a visual feast back then and that obviously influenced me,” Murphy adds. 

Although most of his work over the years has featured landscapes and cityscapes almost entirely in oil, he says he has stepped outside of the box over the last few years and begun to move into abstracts using acrylic for a “change of pace.”

“Representational landscapes and cityscapes… that’s what I have done for decades, but not in a realistic style. I don’t like realistic art. I’d rather just take a photograph, so it’s impressionist,” he says.

An avid traveller, the COVID-19 pandemic put a damper on that for Murphy. He says he found himself in his basement studio filling time in the winters.

“I decided to try something different. I started churning out a lot of abstracts… largely experimental and I think some of them are pretty good,” he says. “It’s really just a matter of putting together colour and shapes in a pleasing combination.

“I like to be spontaneous. I am not one of these artists that agonizes over something for weeks. I just like to do it and move on.”

Murphy’s work is on display as part of a new one-man exhibition for the entire month of May in the Falls Gallery at the Alton Mill Art Centre, located at 1402 Queen Street W., in Caledon. 

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Kirkland Lake museum asks for art donations to help fundraiser – CBC.ca

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The Museum of Northern History in Kirkland Lake, Ont., is accepting people’s donated art pieces for its first Art From Your Attic fundraiser.

The idea behind the event is to give new life to artwork that might be collecting dust in people’s attics or basements, all while raising funds for the museum.

“Ideally, we’ll be looking at locally painted artwork or locally represented artwork,” said Kaitlyn McKay, the museum’s supervisor. 

“Mining paintings are always kind of a top tier item around here, but for us it’s mostly about artwork that people have valued for a long time that has kind of been sitting aside in an attic or in storage or people who just have too much of it and not enough space to store.”

The Museum of Northern History was founded in 1967 and moved to its current location in 1983.

McKay said the community doesn’t have an historical society, and the museum provides a link to the region’s history. That includes photos and artifacts from the groups that immigrated from Ukraine, Poland and Finland to found the community.

A ceramic plate painting by artist Cesar Forero, called ‘Birds in Flight’, is one of the art pieces donated for the Museum of Northern History’s Art From Your Attic Fundraiser. (Submitted by Kaitlyn McKay)

Money raised from the Art From Your Attic fundraiser will help the museum cover its operating expenses and upcoming projects, McKay said.

According to the museum’s Facebook page, donors can also choose to keep 20 per cent of the proceeds from the sale of their pieces.

People have until May 30 to donate pieces of art for the fundraiser. The fundraising event will take place from June 7 to July 3, 2022.

Up North5:59The Museum of the Northern History in Kirkland Lake wants those art treasures hiding in your attic

What’s hiding in your attic? That’s the question the Museum of the Northern History in Kirkland Lake is asking its community. They would like to turn your spring cleaning into fundraising for the museum. Museum supervisor Kaytlin McKay joined us with more details.

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