PRESS HOME -Collecting my thoughts

Belkis Ayón, Arte Continua and Las Bellas Artes, Havana

In the fall of 2019, I was part of a group of artists and cultural workers that travelled to Havana for the second half and final exhibition of the Montreal-Habana exchange. Each day was full of planned events and many exchanges with Cuban and Montreal artists. Here, I will focus on a visit to the art department of the university, an exhibition at Arte Continua and a presentation of the work of Cuban artist, Belkis Ayon by Cristina Vives in the Estudio Figueroa – Vives. A small group of us accepted an invitation by one of the professors to visit […]

Mouvance, the Opera

A chance encounter late summer 2018 in Sackville, New Brunswick led me to participate in something I never imagined doing. Inspired by my work, Suzie LeBlanc, soprano and director of Le Nouvel opera asked me to design and make the set and costume for a new opera she was preparing with composer Jérôme Blais. I hesitated, not sure how I could integrate this into my already full-time work as the artist-in-residence at Mount Allison University. Erik Edson, the director of the art department convinced me that this would be a great opportunity for my student interns, Bre Darlison and Madeleine […]

The End of an Amazing Residency

The final days of my artist residency in New Brunswick played out in Sackville at Mount Allison University in December 2018. I still feel the glow of the beauty of those very rich and ever-so-full days. With the help of many interns, the fishing net knotted with dictionary paper-thread grew to 30 x 12 feet. I used four dictionaries relevant to south-eastern New Brunswick: Le Glossaire acadian, Le Petit Larousse Illustré, Silus Tertias Rand’s English to Mi’kmaq and Webster’s Ninth New Collegiate. My goal was to put the net into the rising tide of the Bay of Fundy and let […]

Noeuds d’écoute/Listening Knots

The research and creation budget of my residency allows me to hire interns and since early this spring, students from l’Université de Moncton and Mount Allison University have been working with me to make sections of fishnets using paper threads spun from  the following dictionaries: English, French and English to Mi’kmaq.  So far with their help, I have several sections of the English and French dictionaries tied together making a net that is approximately 15 feet long by 4 feet high. I hope to be able to double this in size next term, adding the sections made this past fall […]

More Waves, More Nets

I have been re-reading The Waves, by Virginia Woolf as well as other texts, all in researching and preparing for my return to New Brunswick and the second phase of my residency at the Université de Moncton and now to Mount Allison in Sackville. One of the reasons for choosing The Waves is Woolf’s multiple references to spinning and threads connecting words and ideas. “How strange to feel the line that is spun from us lengthening its fine filament across the misty spaces of the intervening world. He is gone; I stand here, holding his poem. Between us is this […]

The Architecture of Writing or Re-reading and Re-writing – One Line at a Time (With My Fingers)

Paper as material and metaphor has been a focus in my work for many years. I am specifically interested in exploring the connections between paper and words, text and textiles. I am currently working on a series of paper weavings/drawings/sculptures using the pages from three books: À la Recherche du temps perdu by Marcel Proust, Ulysses by James Joyce and The Waves by Virginia Woolf. I now see that this is an undertaking of several years and not just one year as I had originally planned. I imagine this work as a way of physically deconstructing and re-presenting the narrative […]

The Matter of Words/sword

That tiny shuffling of letters in words to makes, sword always fascinated me. I like many have been completely heartbroken by the attack and subsequent murder of six men at prayer in a Ste-Foy mosque one week ago today. If only we could wind back the clock to undo this tragedy. The concluding discussion has definitely been around words and their impact. Now we talk, we write, we demonstrate and we worry this terrible knot however we can in an attempt to unravel its hold on us all. Who are we?  We are forced to ask ourselves. Tone down the […]

New work idea : Mother piano

Photo: Paul Litherland   My partner Paul inherited this piano in 2009 from his mother. A Steinway, built in Hamburg, Germany in 1937, it was purchased by her mother in Belfast, Ireland and sent to her sometime in the sixties to Vancouver where they lived. Paul’s grandmother was a well-known and respected piano teacher in Belfast. As a child, I had a strong love-hate relationship to the piano. I took music lessons for many years and despite the fact that I rarely practiced, I managed to learn the basics. My mother played the piano and sang.  She probably taught me […]