First Nation artists Jean Marshall and Christian Chapman had a shorter winter than most artists in northwestern Ontario due to their seven-week group residency in Alberta.
“When we were out west, there were snowboarders walking around in t-shirts and shorts,” said Chapman, an artist from Fort William First Nation. “I was working on a series of large-scale paintings. I used contemporary storytelling as a theme.”
Marshall, an artist from Kitchenuhmaykoosib Inninuwug, worked on printmaking during the residency.
“Normally I do beadwork, but I really wanted to learn print making techniques where you emboss an image,” Marshall said. “So I took an image of my beadwork, so I had a stencil of the beading and I etched it onto copper and then you submerge it into an acid. The end result is basically the image of the beadwork being embossed onto a piece of paper.”
Marshall and Chapman enjoyed meeting and working with the eight other artists during the residency, who were from across Canada as well as from Norway and the United States.
“We met some really great people and that was the whole point of the residency, to network with other artists from all over the world,” Marshall said.
“We made some good friends,” Chapman said.
Marshall and Chapman recently participated in the 2nd annual Waterfront Art Sale at the Baggage Building Art Centre in Thunder Bay.
“It turned out really good,” Chapman said about the art show. “We’re both kind of purging our studios. So we’re glad to create more space to create new work.”
Showcasing work for sale by 20 local artists and artisans, the Waterfront Art Sale was held to celebrate the second anniversary of the opening of the Baggage Building Art Centre at Prince Arthur’s Landing.
I grew up in my home community of Attawapiskat First Nation on the James Bay coast and there were a lot of challenges living in the far north.
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