The eye is actually a fairly passive collector of visual info. The larger part of seeing is made up by secondary perception systems of our brain. Informed by our own experience of the thing we observe, our feelings about it & our own story of the thing are all processed into our ‘seeing’. Observing with that secondary perceptual system allows for a profound and faceted witnessing of the things we experience.
In my painting process, I begin placing sections of light or colour in large blocks until there is some structure there and then I begin to respond more intuitively to the piece that is appearing. As I find flow, there's a point at which the piece seemingly begins to paint itself. I oblige, by putting pieces of light and colour and movement together as each stroke begins to inform the next. Soon, I'm replicating less and less. I focus my mark making around texture, volume, mood and light, working with gestural strokes. Often I feel as if I am writing the piece onto the canvas, more than painting it.
- Erica Dornbusch
See the collection for Vicki McFarland and Erica Dornbusch's "Vivid Alliances" here
Eleanor Lowden is an Ontario artist known for her merry paintings in both acrylic and watercolour, with a focus on figurative works.
"I am fascinated by people," Eleanor tells us in a statement, "My paintings herald the day and honour those simple moments that we all take for granted. Like walking the dog, shopping, eating, holding hands, talking on the phone and texting. I love to watch crowds of people travelling in different directions. Each with their own story and body language, lost in their own thoughts."
Your Very Own (left), shows the interaction of people through fashion. Eleanor uses bright colors and repetition to great effect, unifying the figures. The text brings the viewer into the painting for a closer inspection, while adding a strong narrative to the work. It suggests we collect fashion, each acquisition adding a small piece to our identity.
On Valentine’s day, Westland Gallery launched a new group exhibition, Fall in Love with Art, focusing on the universal feeling of love. Eleanor will be showing four new pieces in this show, including Skate Date. Intimate moments in public spaces is a recurring theme in Eleanor’s workand here is an activity that both is inherently public, yet creates intimacy through touch (at least for the amateur skater!). How do public spaces alter our interactions with our loved ones? Do we hesitate?
Currently, Eleanor is the president of the Canadian Watercolour Society, a member of the Ontario Society of Artists, and a mother a three. To see Westland Gallery’s selection of Eleanor Lowden’s work, click here, and be sure to stop by Fall in Love with Art, Feb 14th - March 4th, 2017.
Matthew Trueman has been showing his work at Westland Gallery for a few years and is currently pursuing his Masters of Fine Arts at the University of Western Ontario. Matthew’s current work for his MFA has seen his practice move in a new direction in regards to medium, while still exploring themes surrounding humankind’s relation and interaction with the environment. In a sneak peak (see image below), we can see what Matthew means. Metthew created an apparatus to project light through a silkscreen as it rotates. While we see this projected onto a wall, the final piece will be installed in a forest, and we can’t wait to see the finished product! The physical screen as part of the piece, and not just the means, shows a progression in Matthew's work.
Jack, Woodcut Print, 42x61"Matthew’s first solo exhibition at Westland was entitled Dirt (2016), and included a collection of woodcut prints and photographs that deal with the relationship between colonization and the environment, something Matthew believes can still be seen in the ever-expanding suburbs of Canadian cities. Jack (below), one of the woodcut prints available at Westland Gallery, directly responds to the industrialized landscape. A ruined hillside is the result of Jack’s resource exploration, while the mirrored print draws the eye into the image.