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Yarmouth Art Society has new home at Yarmouth Mall; opens Sept. 4 –



Earlier this year it wasn’t looking good for the Yarmouth Art Society (YAS), with former venues for art having to shut down due to the pandemic.

On the other hand, more people than ever were discovering the solace and joy of creating art in many different ways.

Bottom Feeders (acrylic pour) by Barb Firth. - Carla Allen
Bottom Feeders (acrylic pour) by Barb Firth. – Carla Allen


How could YAS take advantage of this opportunity for connection?

Linda Deveau, manager for the Yarmouth Mall, recently came to the group’s rescue by arranging for the mall to sponsor a new home for the society, without charge, in the former Carlton Cards location.

Art by Margriet Knubben - Carla Allen
Art by Margriet Knubben – Carla Allen


YAS president Judy Jenkins is delighted with the new space, which opens Sept. 4, from noon to 6 p.m., seven days a week, year-round.

“Being in the mall helps to spread the word about the society and gets other people involved,” she says.

There are close to 70 members in the society now and she says membership is growing in “leaps and bounds.

“Since Saturday we’ve had 14 new people join our group. It’s been really wonderful.”

The Gangs all Here by Brian Porter(Ink on plywood) - Carla Allen
The Gangs all Here by Brian Porter(Ink on plywood) – Carla Allen


She believes many people who did art just for fun in their home during the pandemic have realized they can bring it into the public and in some cases, sell it.

She says she’s met and encouraged many interested would-be artists at her Yarmouth shop Seahags & Scallywags.

The mall location provides an opportunity for a new demographic to experience art and with many workshops being planned on a regular basis, even more people might participate, she says.

Lending library for Yarmouth Art Society members. - Carla Allen
Lending library for Yarmouth Art Society members. – Carla Allen


Papier mache and watercolour workshops will be some of the first ones offered.

“There’s going to be a lot happening, hopefully on a regular basis,” says Jenkins.

Jewelry by Lynda Campo. - Carla Allen
Jewelry by Lynda Campo. – Carla Allen


The society is inclusive of all arts, including photographers, print-makers, fibre-artists, jewelry-makers, glass workers, sculptors, poets, storytellers and others. All skill levels are welcome, from novice artists who just picked up a coloured pencil to professional, well-established artists.

Jenkins says she’s grateful to the Yarmouth Mall and Town of Yarmouth for assistance in making the new location possible. YAS volunteers staff the space and set up the displays.

“We have such a great board and they all worked so hard to set this space up,” says Jenkins.

One of several walls full of Yarmouth Art Society artwork on display. - Carla Allen
One of several walls full of Yarmouth Art Society artwork on display. – Carla Allen


For more info

For more information on membership in the Yarmouth Creatives ($15 annually) visit the Facebook Page or email Jenkins or phone 902-746-3958.

Display space for artists at the new location is available for a minimal charge. Hours open to the public may be adjusted.

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The divide between art and sports can be vast, but sometimes art and sports have been friends –



Hey guys! You know those movies from the ’80s, where the jock picks on the skinny kid with glasses — or the other way around, where the cool art kids treat the guy on the hockey team like a goon?

The divide between art and sports has been vast. So today, let’s talk about a few examples where art and sports have been friends.

Matthew Barney is an American artist who’s made epic, feature-length films with massive props. A lot of people might call his work dance, but here’s a good way of breaking it down. Barney used to be a jock — a football player, to be exact. And he made much of his early work, called Drawing Restraint, about the strong connection between the physical exertion needed for athleticism and the creative drive necessary to make an actual mark, whether it’s on a canvas or a bedroom wall.

Matthew Barney performing Drawing Restraint. (

In all the different versions of this series, he attached himself to bungee cords or made his studio into a rigorous obstacle course, making it an incredible physical feat just to make a single short line on a surface.

Why do this? Barney was making a comparison between what it takes to be an artist and what it takes to be an athlete. We have this tendency to see athleticism as disciplined and ordered, where art is unrestrained and free. But Barney was making it clear that both are forms of expression that require control and letting yourself go.

That’s an example of where an athlete brought his physicality into the art studio, but what about art that simply celebrates sports and tries to close the divide between the two worlds?

Thierry Marceau, a performance artist from Montreal, takes on many famous people’s personas to try to give us a look into their world. And I’m not talking about an impersonation — he becomes them, performing critical moments from their lives and taking on critical elements of their personality.

Thierry Marceau performing as Wayne Gretzky in The Great Alberta Tour (2010). (Thierry Marceau)

When he did this recently with Wayne Gretzky, he called up not only what was mesmerizing about the young hockey hero, but how his physical genius invigorated everybody around him, particularly Edmonton, the town that grieved his loss to LA and still celebrates him today. This is art about sports, or at least about an athlete, and the symbolic meaning an athlete can have for a town.

For artist Esmaa Mohamoud, sports become a tool to tell stories of Black identity. They also become the core for her art — like in Glorious Bones, where she uses 46 repurposed football helmets covered in an African wax batik print, calling up both the history and sacrifice of Black athletes over generations of football and the beauty of the sport itself.

Glorious Bones (2018) by Esmaa Mohamoud. (Esmaa Mohamoud)

In Blood and Tears Instead of Milk and Honey, the footballs themselves are stained black and lie still on black astroturf — like a memorial, or a tribute, to the sport that’s meant so much to North Americans. 

And in One of the Boys, she incorporates basketball jerseys into epic swirling gowns, calling up the inextricable connection between fashion and basketball, while she points to some of the ideas around gender that are always part of the history of sport.

One of the Boys (2017-2018) by Esmaa Mohamoud. (Esmaa Mohamoud/Qendrim Hoti)

Why is there such a divide between the art studio and the football field? Here’s an idea: traditionally — and I’m talking ancient Greece here — sports were an arena to perform gender, to build notions of virility and strength. And maybe art has been more receptive to those whose ideas of both gender and physicality were a little more fluid. Maybe sports, which often requires team thinking, has been seen as a bit at odds with individual thinking.

Each of these disparate practices informs the other. Athleticism is creative. It requires intellect, lateral thinking and incredible mental patience — just watch tennis finals and you’ll see that everything from Serena Williams’s outfits to her serve involve a high level of intellect and creativity, not to mention an incredible performance. And art, on its side, requires a physicality, patience and drive that rivals anything that happens during practice.

Who’s someone you can think of that brings art and sport together? Send me a line here at CBC Arts and together, perhaps we can stop one kid from getting pushed into their locker at lunch or let another get through the day without being called a meathead.

See you next time for more Art 101. 

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Petrolia Discovery offering tours and art show Saturday – Sarnia Observer



Oil and art are set to mix Saturday at the Petrolia Discovery heritage site.

Liz Welsh, with the Petrolia Discovery Foundation, is shown at the oil heritage site in Petrolia. It is offering self-guided tours and an art show and sale this Saturday, 10 a.m. to 3 p.m.

Paul Morden / The Observer

Oil and art are set to mix Saturday at the Petrolia Discovery heritage site.

The foundation that operates the working oil field and heritage site in Petrolia has been opening the gates for self-guided tours on several Saturdays during the summer and fall, and this Saturday’s event will include a show and sale by local artists and artisans.

The Artist Day and tours run from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Admission is by donation.

Foundation board member Liz Welsh said the event was organized for local artists who missed out on traditional shows and sales during this year’s pandemic restrictions.

“It’s an opportunity for arts and craft people who would normally be travelling around and spending their summer hitting up all of these shows and earning their income,” Welsh said.

The event will feature 15 vendors, socially distanced outdoors at the site for the walk-through show and sale.

Welsh said, “We’ve kept it very local” with nearly all of the vendors from Petrolia, and offering items ranging from jewelry to paintings, photography, as well as fabric and leather art.

“I think maybe one or two aren’t quite in Petrolia, but we filled up with Petrolia people first.”

Welsh said COVID-19 precautions will be in place during the show, and the self-guided tours of the heritage buildings and oil field. Volunteers will be at the site and visitors will be given plastic covered tour guidebooks that are sanitized between use.

“They get to support local art and local history at the same time,” she said.

Visitors are asked to use the site’s north entrance through Bridgeview Park.

The site’s plans for the event have been cleared with the town’s emergency management coordinator, Welsh said.

Visitors are being asked to use cash to make purchases from vendors, and to wear a face mask while browsing the art.

The site offers “lots of room to distance,” Welsh said.

“And, the weather looks like it’s going to be fabulous.”

Saturday will also feature live music by the Lambton Brass Quintet from about 10:30 a.m. to noon.

Welsh said the group is make up of members of the Lambton Concert Band.

She said anyone with questions about the event can call the Discovery at 519-882-0897, or contact the foundation through its Facebook page.

The tours at the Discovery have been “really well-received,” including a previous Saturday that featured a local car club. Welsh said.

“We had lots of people, that day,” she said.

The Discovery will also expected to be open for self-guided tours on the Saturday of the upcoming Thanksgiving weekend.

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Travel news: Local cultural events, live music and art classes – The Globe and Mail



Lekwungen traditional dancers in Saanich, B.C., in 2019.

Kevin Light/Handout

An expanded Culture Days 2020 launches Sept. 25 across Canada with the theme Unexpected Intersections, offering free livestream and in-person arts and culture experiences. Concerts, art classes, dance performances and self-guided tours are some of the options available until Oct. 25. Highlights include Nuit Blanche in Winnipeg, Behind the Wall: Making of a collective mural by the Revelstoke Visual Arts Centre and the Yukon Arts Centre’s Waterfront Parade in Whitehorse.

Get a dose of live music at Vancouver’s Gastown Unplugged, a pop-up music series happening until the end of October. Wander the cobblestones or listen from a patio to local musicians at four locations including the Maple Tree Square Pop-Up Plaza.

At Vancouver’s Gastown Unplugged, listen from a patio to local musicians at four locations.

Gastown Unplugged/Handout

Supplement back to school with BIPOC history and stories: digital Doors Open Ontario has videos, virtual tours and photos from Canadian Black History sites such as Amherstburg Freedom Museum, Chatham-Kent Black Historical Society, Uncle Tom’s Cabin Historical Site and John Freeman Walls Underground Railroad Museum while Hot Docs at Home ( has launched For Viola, a documentary series focused on BIPOC stories and filmmakers, streaming for free.

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Kimpton Hotels has introduced Chief Virtual Learning Officers (CVLO), helping families on vacation with remote learning. Reserve access to an on-property CVLO and get set up with complimentary desks, snacks and school supplies. Now available at Toronto’s Kimpton Saint George (, the hotel currently offers a 15-per-cent discount on reservations made three days in advance for IHG members who book directly.

Writerfest in Kingston, Ont., in 2019.

Garrett Elliott/Handout

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