Wednesday, 14 June 2017 11:53

Dynamic artistry on display in Val Marie June 22

Written by  Laureen Marchand
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Madonna Hamel's Gleaners-Scavengers-Foragers Madonna Hamel's Gleaners-Scavengers-Foragers Contributed

Artworks in photography and mixed-media collage by artists from Val Marie and Saskatoon will be celebrated at a reception at Val Marie’s provincially recognized ecomuseum Prairie Wind & Silver Sage in Val Marie on June 22 from 7:30-9 p.m.

Both artists will be present and the public is welcome to meet and congratulate them and enjoy snacks and a cash bar and conversation.
In the Cloakroom Gallery at PWSS, Saskatoon photographer John J. Penner presents Meditations on the Grasslands, an exhibition of salt-printed photographs that invite the viewer to enjoy a moment of contemplation and fill their eyes with the expansive spaces that are the great Canadian grasslands.
“In a digital age, images are ubiquitous and consumed voraciously, then discarded without much thought,” says Penner. “Handcrafted images slow down this process and allow for a more contemplative approach to visualization.”
The salt printing process was invented in the 1840s and was the first reproducible process to yield an image on paper which could be waxed to make it transparent enough to act as a negative.
The photographs in this exhibition seem to take the viewer back in time to imagine the past when vast herds of buffalo roamed the North American central plains.
In the Museum Gallery, Madonna Hamel is showing Apron Pocket Archives, colourful mixed-media collages that are the result of two years of research, writing, collecting, corresponding, conversing and musing about the apron.
“As a portal into the history of women, whose role and presence in society have, for the most part, served as supporting characters advancing the biographies and stories of the men in their lives, the apron contains gleanings of wider stories,” says Hamel. “Apron Pocket Archives is a creative attempt at exploring encounters between settlers and indigenous people, past and present, dreams and waking, animals and humans, by use of ‘traces’, ‘ghosts’, juxtapositions and introductions of characters who more than likely never had a chance to meet.”
Prairie Wind & Silver Sage works in partnership with the local community and Grasslands National Park of Canada to promote the conservation of native prairie landscapes, while inviting the exploration and appreciation of prairie culture and natural history.
PWSS is open seven days a week from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. until Aug. 31, and then weekends until Sept. 16.
 The exhibitions continue throughout this summer season and more information is available online at

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