CBU Art Gallery

The Cape Breton University Art Gallery now has a blog! See what's going on at Cape Breton's only university art gallery. Updated weekly

Tuesday, November 21, 2006

October & November (past tense)

Hello All,
It's been a very long time since my last blog entry. Lots has happened, though, which is my excuse for not updating the blog earlier.
October was a busy month, with the opening of the Centre for Cape Breton Studies happening on October 11th and Kenny Boone's exhibition, MUSING, opening on October 20th. For the celebration of the Centre, which is located across the hall from the Art Gallery, the Finlay Walker Memorial Collection was exhibited in CE-265 (the room adjacent to the Art Gallery). Curated by Art Gallery Preparator, Michele MacDonald, the 28 works by Ellison Robertson present Gaels of Cape Breton and various Gaelic cultural activities, such as a milling frolic and dancing. They will be on display in this multipurpose room until all construction at the Centre has been completed and the walls are ready to hang the collection on.
Kenny Boone's MUSING opened to a lovely crowd of 80 or so admirers and had a good run until it ended on November 17th. The artist gave a talk about the new direction his work is moving in to a crowd of 15 on October 24th.
We also celebrated art and the CBU Art Gallery with an exciting and enjoyable Gala evening on November 3th. Lanterns and Lotus Blossoms was so popular that it sold out! This is a first for the annual Art Gallery Gala (the 9th for those of you keeping count). Planning is starting soon for next year's so if you have any comments or suggestions, let me know (via the blog). Should we have another next year? Wait another year? More chocolate? More art? Less art? Let the planning committee know how you feel (anonymously if you'd prefer!).
Next up on the Art Gallery's roster is Sysco 1901-2001. This exhibition features work by UCCB alumnus Lesley Hinton. The exhibition will be on display from November 24 to January 12, 2007. The opening reception will be held Friday, December 1, from 7:00 - 9:00 pm as usual. Please see a portion of the press release for Sysco 1901-2001.

Hinton has been capturing photographs of the old steel plant, which is now under demolition. Steelmaking was a central industry in Cape Breton for decades. After many years of financial hardships, the steelmaking industry could not survive on the Island. Hinton highlights this through her work.

“With each visit to Sysco, I document evidence of the hundreds of men and women who once worked here. Some personal items still occupied their lockers as though a shift has just ended,” says Hinton. “The emergency of leaving the plant seemed almost as quick as death. Large machinery litters the grounds as though appropriate symbols of this gigantic graveyard.”

Hinton has been documenting the Sysco site since 2001 and plans to continue to develop her work during the demolition of the plant.

“I think it important to share this documentary work of a way of life,” comments Hinton. “Regular visits to the site and researching the history of the plant has helped me understand the importance of this industry to the people of Cape Breton, and of Canada.

On a personnel note... the Art Gallery is happy to have working with us on a volunteer basis, Sarah MacDonald. Sarah is completing her work placement portion of the Bachelor of Arts Community Studies program and in doing so, is working on the development of the Art Gallery's membership program (to be available in 2007) as well as planning the 11th Annual Student, Faculty, Staff & Alumni Exhibition for February 2007. Sadly, as one person arrives, another leaves. For the past year Saul MacNeil has volunteered and worked at the Art Gallery as Art Gallery Assistant and Junior Registrar (summer). Unfortunately, he will no longer be found at "Saul's Desk" in the office. He will be leaving in a couple of days for Calgary. We will miss you, Saul!! All of the Gallery Girls (myself, Michele, Sarah, Shirley, Sharon, Judy, etc.) wish you the best and send you much luck and success.