1 North Square, Cambridge, ON
Curated by Karly Boileau
Featuring work by Ilse Anysas-Salkauskas, Barbara Brown, Dorothy Caldwell, Kai Chan, Kathryn Dain, Marta del Fara, Anouk Desloges, Noelle Hamlyn, Dawn MacNutt, Janet Morton, Gordana Olujic Dosic, Tammy Ratcliff, and Joy Walker
What is a line? It can move forwards or backwards, up, down, and across. It can form patterns and grids; it can be orderly or chaotic. It can be a thought, a memory, a story, a text. What is a line? It is the start of a journey. Taking cues from art, design, science, math, geography, language, and writing, the works in this exhibition consider line in all of its possibilities. Selected from Cambridge Art Galleries’ permanent collection of contemporary Canadian fibre art, these works invite us think about what a line is, from its formal qualities and beyond.
Ilse Anysas-Salkauskas was born in Berlin, Germany during WW ll to Lithuanian refugees, immigrated to Canada in 1962 and now lives and works near Cochrane, Alberta. She graduated from the Alberta College of Art in 1980 ( now known as The Alberta University of Art ) with a diploma having majored in Textile art. In 2009 she received a Canada Council Grant which allowed her to attend two Leighton Studios in Banff, Alberta. Her mixed media tapestry and sculptural art work has been exhibited in juried and invitational exhibitions across Canada, the United States, South Korea, Netherlands, Belgium and France. Two of her art works are in permanent collections of the Alberta Foundation for the Arts in Edmonton, Alberta and one is in the collection of the Cambridge Art Galleries, Cambridge, Ontario. Other works are in private collections in the United States and Canada.
Barbara Brown was born in Ottawa, Ontario and has lived in many places throughout Canada and returned to Ottawa to make her home. She received a Bachelors of Fine Art from Nova Scotia College of Art and Design (now NSCAD University) and a Masters in Art from Manchester Polytechnic (now Manchester Polytechnic University).
Brown spent a year as an apprentice in the Paris studio of the American artist Shelia Hicks before completing her graduate work in England and returning to Canada to establish her artistic practice in Ottawa.
Dorothy Caldwell was born in Bethesda, Maryland, United States and immigrated to Canada in 1972. She lives and works in Hastings, Ontario, and has held an active studio practice for over 25 years. She is a graduate of Tyler School of Art, Philadelphia. Her work has been influenced by her travels in India, Japan and Australia and contact with native fibre works. She started as a painter and has excelled as textile artist. Her stitching has used the white on indigo sashiko style, as practiced in Japan, or the patterned Indian kantha style. She was a recipient of the Prix Saidye Bronfman Award for Excellence in 1990 and a nominee for Governor General’s Award, 2003. Her striking textile works have been exhibited across Canada, United States and Australia and held in permanent collections by the Museum of Arts and Design, Permanent Collection in New York, New York, the Canadian Museum of Civilization, Gatineau, Quebec, and the Canadian Department of Foreign Affairs, Ottawa, Ontario.
Kai Chan was born in Chung Kiang, China and immigrated to Canada in 1966. He graduated from Chung Chi College in Hong Kong and completed a degree in interior design at the Ontario College of Art. His work is textile based and three-dimensional. While his preferred fibre medium is thread, his work often includes other materials such as paper, glass beads, ink, toothpicks, lawn grass, cinnamon sticks and glass. Chan has received grants from the Canada Council for the Arts and the Ontario Arts Council. In 1998 he received the Jean A. Chalmers National Crafts Award and was a winner of the Prix Saidye Bronfman Award for Excellence in Crafts in 2002. His work has been exhibited across Canada, Europe, Japan, Australia and the United States and may be found in collections at the Canadian Museum of Civilization, the Mendel Art Gallery, Saskatoon, the Museum of Fine Arts, Huston, Texas, and the Musée des Arts Decoratifs de Montréal, Montreal, Quebec.
His work is critically received equally within the discipline of textiles and the visual arts. He participated in the prestigious 12th International Biennial of Tapestry in Lausanne, Switzerland in 1985, and the equally notable International Triennial of Tapestry in Lodz, Poland in 2001, where he exhibited Ocean, one in a series of complex wall hangings comprised of thousands of toothpicks and thread – an indication that woven tapestry is now only one textile process among many, thanks to artists like Chan whose work is seen in a contemporary context of textiles as substance, structure and subject matter.
Chan's work manifests both his physical journey from China to Canada and his personal journey as an artist negotiating a cross-cultural identity. He draws inspiration from the basic elements in his immediate surroundings: light, air, earth, water, flora and fauna. He has chosen to work with everyday, and often recyclable and found materials because, for him, the nature of these materials represents a fundamental value that informs the human condition.
Kathryn Dain was born in Woodstock, Ontario and educated at Ryerson Polytechnical Institute (Diploma, Home Economics), the University of Guelph (Bachelor of Arts, summa cum laude) and York University (Master of Fine Arts). She has exhibited her work extensively in Canada, the United States and the United Kingdom. She has received many awards including Ontario Arts Council Mid Career Grants (1993, 1996, 2004) and Best-In-Show/Walter Hopps Award from the Contemporary Artists Center, North Adams, Massachusetts. Her work can be found in both private and public collections including the Canada Council Art Bank, the Woodstock Art Gallery, Cambridge Galleries, The Bank of Montreal collection and AstraZeneca Canada. Kathryn Dain was represented by Peak Gallery in Toronto (2002 to 2013), and lives in Brantford, Ontario.
Marta Dal Farra was born in Belluno, Italy. She immigrated with her family to Ontario, Canada in 1955. Initially she taught English as a second language in Canada, Japan and Mexico. Later, she taught art classes at the Ontario College of Art, Sheridan College and Ryerson Polytechnic Institute in Toronto, Ontario and started her career as a visual artist. She is known for her mixed media textile art. Her exposure to Japanese textile traditions is reflected in some of her artwork. Among many shows, Del Farra’s work has been exhibited at the Japan Foundation, Toronto, Ontario, the Ontario College of Art and Design show of work by alumni and faculty.
Anouk Desloges, daughter of garment manufacturers, was born in Victoriaville QC, in 1980. She has recieved a BFA from Université Laval (Quebec City) and a Diploma in Sculpture from Maison des Métiers d'Art de Québec where her work was awarded first honors. Since then, she has been awarded a number of prizes and fellowships including a research grant for emerging artists (Quebec Art Council) and the Helen Frances Gregor Scholarship (Craft Ontario). She has exhibited in Canada, France and Guatemala and her work can be found in various public and private collections across Canada. She now lives in Toronto where she has been selected to participate in the Harbourfront Centre's artist-in-residence program.
Highly crafted and distinctly mysterious, Anouk Desloges' embroidery practice explores the representation of abstract concepts; she attempts to illustrate what doesn't exist in a physical form. The interpretations become intimate and filled with imagination, at once vulnerable, fragile and precious.
The embroidery is removed from its traditional support to adorn plastic and metal. Being trained as a sculptor, Anouk juxtaposes the materials and techniques to create an illusion of depth and to reconsider the definition of two and three-dimensional compositions. The pieces present symbolic allegories and literary allusions according to developed themes in collaboration with participants or from autobiographical inspirations.
Noelle Hamlyn is a graduate of the Sheridan College School of Crafts and Design (Textiles, 2007), the School of the Art Institute of Chicago (2009), and Fanshawe College (Technical Costume Studies, 2015). Her work has represented Canada at the International Craft Biennale (Cheongju, South Korea) and the Love Lace International Lace Competition at the Power House Museum (Sydney, Australia). 2010 saw her work selected as part of the Vancouver 2010 Cultural Olympiad. In 2013 Hamlyn was invited to create an installation for the Biennale Internationale Du Lin de Portneuf Quebec.
Garnering critical praise, Hamlyn’s installations and studio practice has been recognized by numerous awards and support from the Ontario Arts Council, Mississauga Arts Council, Ontario Crafts Council, the Toronto Outdoor Art Exhibition, Visual Arts Mississauga (VAM) and the Mississippi Mills Textile Museum. Her work is held in permanent collections of the Cambridge Art Gallery, the Peel Board of Education, the Japanese Paper Place, the City of Mississuaga Culture Division, Peel Museum and Archives (PAMA) and the Cleveland University Hospitals. She has shown several times at the AGM with an installation in the X-IT Room, a performance installation work in F’d Up!, and several group shows such as VAM’s Annual Juried Exhibition (winning best in show). Her work was also shown in Japan along side a select group of Canadian artists exploring the possibilities of Japanese paper.
In 2015 Hamlyn became an Artist in Residence at the Living Arts Centre (Mississauga), and has completed residencies at Harbourfront Centre, the Burren College of Art (Ballyvaughan, Ireland), and the Contemporary Textile Co-Op (Toronto). She is Co-Artistic Director of Frog and Hand – an interdisciplinary collective of performance and visual artists. Her work includes costumes for the Pan Am Closing Ceremonies and the Para Pan Am Opening and Closing Ceremonies.
Dawn’s interest began with fabric and with painting as a child. Her university degrees were in social work, with a minor in Fine Arts. Amidst her career as a social worker and while raising a family of three, she discovered she could combine her passions for weaving and art. In 2006, she moved from Dartmouth, Nova Scotia to Little Harbour, Pictou County and remarried. Her ‘new’ studio is a 170 year-old house on her husband’s property. In restoring the house as a studio, they made the discovery that the house had been built by Dawn’s great-great-great-grandfather.
She has shown locally and internationally since the 1980’s, in more than a hundred exhibitions, 17 solo shows including AGNS, Montpelier Cultural Centre, Laurel Maryland, John Aird Gallery, Toronto. Her work has been collected by the Museum of Civilization, Canadiana Fund, the Museum of American Design, formerly the American Craft Museum, Art Gallery of Nova Scotia to name a few. She has commissioned works in many private and public Collections, including UOIT Oshawa and the City of Kelowna.
She is a member of Royal Canadian Academy of the Arts and has Honorary Doctorate Degrees from Mt.Allison University and from Mt. St. Vincent University for her contribution to the Arts. She has led workshops and seminars, and served on juries in Canada and United States. Her career has been the subject of many published articles and reviews, as well as a filmed CBC documentary.
Dawn still creates interlaced sculpture from natural materials such as willow, honeysuckle, wisteria, grapevine…. sometimes, cast into bronze. Almost always they are inspired by the human form, abstracted to invite individual interpretation. She identifies her most important source of inspiration as ‘the beauty of human frailty’
For the past twenty years Janet Morton has used knitting, installation, performance, and sculpture to explore issues of labour, home and the domestic. The Guelph, Ontario based artist is known for several interventions in public spaces, including Cozy (1999-2000), a cover made of recycled, knitted sweaters sewn together, that was installed over an old cottage on Ward Island and on a free standing frame in Trinity Square Park in Toronto, and Before Flight (2012), a recent permanent sculpture made of metal and stone, installed in the Donald Forester Sculpture Garden at the Macdonald Stewart Art Centre in Guelph. In several new video collaborations Morton explores ephemerality and challenges productivity by unraveling knitted sculptures that represent hours of labour. Morton holds a BFA from York University (1990) and is represented by Paul Petro Contemporary Art. Morton’s work is included in the collections of the Cambridge Galleries, The Royal Bank of Canada, Museum London, and in numerous private collections in Canada, Switzerland, India, and the United States.
Gordana Olujic Dosic is a visual artist living in Toronto, Ontario. She was born in Belgrade, Serbia, former Yugoslavia (1951), where she received her B.A. in Textile Art and Design at the Faculty for Applied Arts, University of Arts in 1985. She moved to Toronto in 1988.
Spanning over thirty years, with numerous exhibitions (solo, two-person and group), other professional activities (teaching, artist’s talks, international workshops), Gordana’s work ranges from art textiles to mixed media and multimedia and has travelled from Canada to USA, Serbia, Poland, Bulgaria, Bosnia, Lithuania, France and Mexico.
Her work is personal, introspective and narrative. It is often about dichotomies of strength and frailty, permanence and ephemerality, trust and betrayal.
Gordana’s practice includes textile techniques like stitching and layering, working with photography and video, and using diverse materials, from paper and textiles to metal elements, as well as natural and man-made found materials. Material exploration is a very important part of her process. In recent years it has been complemented by the use of video, in a supporting role of a “layer” in her wall installations and a “modifier” of meaning.
Tammy Ratcliff was born in Toronto in 1966. She studied printmaking at BealArt in London, Ontario and has been printing since her first class in 1990. She lives in Guelph with her family and works full time at her practice in her own studio. Her work has been shown extensively in group and solo shows, most recently SHIFT: Environmentally Responsible Print Practice exhibition at McMaster Museum of Art in Hamilton, RED at Renann Isaccs Contemporary Art, Guelph, Print City: Detroit, Art Toronto with Open Studio, World Washi Summit and Printopolis, Toronto. Tammy has received provincial grants and various awards for her artwork since first exhibiting in 1993 and was awarded third prize in Open Studio's National Printmaking Awards in 2010. Her work is included in numerous private, public and corporate collections, Dan Donocan Collection at St. Michael's, Stratford Gallery, Art Gallery of Guelph, Ernst & Young, and Cambridge Art Galleries to name a few. Tammy has travelled with her work, notably to residencies at Frans Masereel Centrum in Belgium, Spark Box Studios in Picton, Ontario and Prima Ink in Tromoso, Norway in the summer of 2016.
Tammy is inspired by the botanical world and its many examples of imperfection and impermanence. From this viewpoint she uses traditional textile techniques to manipulate her etchings and monoprints on handmade paper, creating renditions of functional textile pieces. Items whose utilitarian value might be lessened as they become threadbare and fragile through use are thus transformed into artifacts of shared memories and the passage of time.
Joy Walker is a Montréal born, Toronto-based, multidisciplinary artist. In May – June 2019, Walker, produced artist projects at the TextielLab in Tilburg, Netherlands and at the Van Eyck Academie in Maastricht, Netherlands. In January 2020, Walker was the recipient of the Chalmers Arts Fellowship awarded by the Ontario Arts Council.
Her work has been exhibited widely, including 8eleven Gallery, The Power Plant Contemporary Art Gallery (Toronto), Plug-In Institute of Contemporary Art (Winnipeg), Truck Gallery (Calgary), Dunlop Gallery (Regina), Mount Saint Vincent University Art Gallery, (Halifax), Rodman Hall (St. Catharines, ON), Cambridge Galleries (ON), Venice (Italy), NYC, Chicago, and Miami (USA). Walker’s works are held in several private and public collections including those of Cambridge Galleries (ON), le Musée d’art Contemporain de Montréal (QC), The National Gallery of Canada Library and Archives (ON), BMO Financial Group Corporate Art Collection, Grant Thornton LLP, and TD Bank. She is represented by MKG127 in Toronto.