Taking art by the horns
By: Scott Hayes
| Posted: Wednesday, Feb 13, 2013 06:00 am
Prendre le français par les cornes
Featuring the works of Doris and Gaston Charest, plus Sarah Cleary
Opening reception tonight at 7 p.m.
Artists will be in attendance.
Centre d'arts visuels de l'Alberta (CAVA)
9103 95 Avenue in Edmonton
Call 780-461-3427 or visit www.savacava.com for more information.
Doris Charest is one of a select group of artists who gets to experience the rare pleasure of participating in a group show with one of her own family members. The painter says that it all started when she and her father, Gaston, were part of a news story.
"We were interviewed by French CBC TV and in that interview, they were looking for artists that are still French-speaking out in the West. They wanted to raise the profile of French-Canadians in the West to people in Quebec, to make them aware that there are French-speaking people out West."
Gaston Charest lives in a small community in southern Alberta and has continued to be a francophone even though he left la belle province more than 50 years ago. He started creating artworks out of wood, mostly lathe work and inlaid woods, after he retired from farming. Doris said that some of his most popular work includes bowls made out of hockey sticks.
"When [Centre d'arts visuels de l'Alberta] first opened, I went and I put his work in there and, as a consequence, I ended up having work there," she laughed.
This is a preview of what art has been accumulated since that news story. It's a fine retrospective for Doris who has a series that shows the progression of her work over the last decade.
Viewers might have some difficulty discerning the early from the later works of the artist's oeuvre.
"I haven't changed!" she exclaimed, later adding, "I'm definitely getting more abstract."
The exhibit, Prendre le français par les cornes, has an interesting translation.
"Take French by the horns," Charest laughed. "It just means 'taking care of your French roots.' "
Fall in love with a painting
Like it or not, tomorrow is just one of those days that seems to favour couples rather than single people. One local art gallery is hoping to change their minds by offering a special event just for them.
"Valentine's Day is sometimes a hard day for people. We thought, 'How could we use the gallery … where they don't necessarily need to bring a date and still see some fantastic art?' " said Art Beat Gallery owner Brigitte Barrantes.
Art Beat is hosting Small Squares Great Wonders, a one-night only event Thursday that gives attendees a great opportunity to snag some smaller works by some of the gallery's established artists. No piece costs more than $500 and everything is sized to fit on anyone's wall.
"I'm amazed by the quality of work," she exclaimed.
If you can't make it out during the evening, the works will still be available until the end of the month. The earlier you get there, however, the better your chance of finding some great, affordable local art.