Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Mary Wood at Canopy Restaurant

Mary Wood is one fire cracker of a visual artist and a dearly loved teacher, an instructor and a mentor . She is currently showing some of her latest works at the Canopy restaurant in Alliston. Pictured here at the opening reception with Mary are the president of the South Simcoe Arts Council Nancy Williams (center) and Janet Clayson,a member of SSAC and a strong supporter of all arts in our community (right). The Canopy Restaurant is a spacious, new venue -with a great menu....and large empty walls that the owners call The Big Sky Art Gallery. The intention is to feature a new artist every six weeks. All artists, rejoice!
Mary 's show is the second one in the series, Catherine Cadieux, -another local powerhouse of a painter, was the first one.

These two large canvases were born from the images that Mary collected during her recent trip to Scotland. She is also a brilliant storyteller, so -listen up: WHATEVER her topic happens to be, -visual or verbal, you can be be sure that the story has substance and something to teach you.
Mary certainly keeps her eyes open; in Glasgow she collected all kinds of "visual treasures" right from the streets, -mainly just observing the debris that people had left behind. The story is hilarious and leaves you laughing; you just never know what might inspire the artistic eye!
These two are large 48"x48" acrylic paintings on canvas, consequently titled "Glasgow 4, Orange and Blue" and "Glasgow 6 ,Blue and Orange."

These two pictures are my humble attempt to deliver some detail of the surface....as you can see, the best thing you can do is to make a trip to the restaurant and study these close up. The texture is really quite yummy.

Here is a view of the front dining area with the Glasgow paintings in the back ground. On the very far left you'll find another large piece titled "Egress". This one is a multimedia, acrylic on canvas 60"x48".
The last three pictures on this blog are details of the surface of that painting: you'll discover how Mary fearlessly combines painting , drawing and decoupage.

This is one TALL room! I apologize for the darkness of this photo, I wanted to include it so that you can get some idea of the vastness of this display space. The Canopy restaurant has a nice, long bar area, a good place to sit down, enjoy a beverage and study some art. You can really see that Mary's paintings have a lot of power and strength; they certainly deliver through/over/above any distance and visual competition. These paintings are all acrylic on canvas, clockwise titled "Remote" 48"x48"( If you are looking for THE STRONG, SILENT TYPE, -this would be IT! :), "Cytoblast" 48"x36" and "Patriot" 48"x48".

Here is a close up of the "Patriot" in the bottom of the previous picture above. These images Mary composed after meditating over the shapes she saw in the bundle of her KEYS! Look closely and you'll discover a car remote surrounded by the flowing negative and positive spaces around it. Such confident use of colour!
One does not have to travel the world for inspiration, it might just be waiting in your own handbag!

Another large piece inspired by the keys: "Unlocked, The Space Between" Acrylic on canvas 48"x60".

A detail of "Egress" 60"x48" featured earlier. ( Renew is intentionally upside down)

A close up that leads you to discover some of the drawing and decoupage: there is a story hidden behind that veil of paint!

A point of entry or a point of exit? A joyful egression? A transformation of existence?
I had the good fortune to spend a week with Mary in 1997; I participated in a week-long painting workshop taught by her. The experience was liberating! There is no need to be afraid that your painting is not going to turn out right; you just get back at it and force it to a different direction. Go ahead, -make a mess! A mess can be the best thing! This was a gift from the Universe! ( and my friend Emilia Perri from Maggiolly Art Supplies).
Not enough can be said about Mary Wood.
She is one powerful pixie that gal!
Fire in her eyes and brimstone in her talk!
A laugh that picks you up and takes you with!
Her enthusiasm and love of life is contagious.
As a teacher she is gentle, resourceful and generous.
If you wish to "stretch" your eye and train it to see "bigger", -study Mary's paintings.
The show at Canopy will run till the end of the month.
If you wish to take your painting practice to a new level, seek for an opportunity to study with Mary.
Your whole life will take a new course!
Maggiolly Art Supply Store in Orangeville is planning to organize another week long painting retreat with Mary later this summer, for information contact Emilia at 519-942-9560 or write to maggiollyart@sympatico.ca
With the spring in the air
I leave you
in a elated FRAME OF MIND,
as always,
Outi, The Frame Dame

1 comment:

  1. Great post, Outi! Haven't made it to that restaurant but I'm glad to hear that they're into art and providing a vast space on which to feature home grown talent. What a fabuous wall space for Mary's size and style of work.