Wednesday, 08 April 2015 14:25

Fox Valley student can’t wait for work to be on display at college show

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Fox Valley’s Joy Glass had a unique childhood.

Glass is one of the more than 20 graduates of this year’s Medicine Hat College’s Visual Communications program. They have their work on display in the upcoming show Merge at the One on One Gallery in the west wing of the Cultural Center building near the Medicine Hat College campus.
Opening reception for the event is April 11 at 7 p.m.
Glass grew up on what she calls a buffalo ranch, where her parents raised the animals in west-central Saskatchewan.
Her parents were artistic in their own right and encouraged their daughter to  do what she wanted. They would make jewelry out of buffalo bones, make buffalo leather goods or turn fur into yarn to make unique items.
“I was always into art, but I never saw it as a potential career or being able to make a career out of it,” explains Glass, who like her graduating classmates, will be allowed to showcase two pieces in Merge.
Glass says she made up her mind rather quickly to attend the Medicine Hat College and take the Visual Communications program which would allow her to express and explore her creativity.
“I went to Student for a Day at the college; I knew right then,” says Glass snapping her fingers as if to say it was instantaneous. “(I) kinda, had to figure out a next move. Seeing the building, the equipment, this is where I knew I had to be,” explains Glass of her spend-a-day trip in 2010. “(It was) just so inspiring even though it was older and (a) little space. In those buildings it was pretty much home for a while. There were drawings all over the walls, very raw in there.
“This building is so much better of a facility. The gallery is beautiful. Before we just had a square room ... (the One on One Gallery) is awesome. It’s cool to be able to display our work for two to three weeks at a time.”
Glass says there is more space and allows the artists to be free to be able to do more. This helps her when she wants to do something with bricks or buffalo hides.
“My parents are very artistic. My parents were very ‘follow-your-dreams’ kind of people. Art is a tough kind of profession to make a living at, but here (at the college) they showed me how.”
Glass gets some of her inspiration from her friends, family, some instructors and also remembering special moments from her childhood. Not only does she do intaglio work, but she also starting using objects such as bricks and buffalo hides as bases,
All of this is because her instructors “allowed her personality to come out” in her work.
“It was kind of intimidating at first, because I had only had done drawing. The instructors here are so amazing,” Glass explains. “It’s crazy. After my first year, I wasn’t sure if I was going to continue, but I stuck through it and I’m so glad I did. I just remember how hard it was my first year adjusting. I’ve always been the kind of person who worked smart, not hard. College taught me that if I wanted to get anywhere, I needed to work hard too. It’s made me a stronger person.”
Glass says when she came to the college, her strength was drawing. Now, she realized other talents included painting, photography, and sculpture, but her favourite new way of doing art is intaglio.
According to Wikipedia, intaglio “is the family of printing and printmaking techniques in which the image is incised into a surface, and the incised line or sunken area holds the ink. It is the direct opposite of a relief print. Normally, copper or zinc plates are used as a surface or matrix, and the incisions are created by etching, engraving, drypoint, aquatint or mezzotint. Collagraphs may also be printed as intaglio plates.”
The April 11 show and of course graduation are two of the few official events left for Glass to be able to share with her classmates. It will be a bittersweet moment for the Fox Valley native.
“They have been so inspiring. They and the instructors really push for people to do their best,” explains Glass. “I will be sad to leave them, but I’ll come back and visit.”

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Ryan Dahlman

Managing Editor