We have just returned from a fabulous trip to Montréal, where a solo exhibition of fifteen of my new paintings opened on October 10 at Beaux-arts des Amériques Gallery. The gallery has represented my work for several years, but this was my first solo show there, and it was the first time I'd seen the gallery in person. It's a gorgeous, elegant space in a vibrant section of that great city, and the installation of the work was beautiful.
The gallery shows work by both Canadian and American artists, and it was a treat for me to get to talk at the opening with several outstanding Montréal artists who are represented by them. They produced a beautiful, 12-page catalog for the exhibition, which includes full-color images of all the works in the show, an introduction by gallery owner Jacqueline Hébert Stoneberger, my artist statement, a vita, and a terrific essay on my work by Montréal art critic and writer John K. Grande, who has written extensively for Artforum, Art Papers, Sculpture, Vie des Arts, and many other journals.
I have included here images of a few of the new paintings in the exhibition, and have posted images of all the works--which range from a number of small, 12" x 9" oil on canvas birch portraits to two quite large, 54" x 84" canvases--in the Available Work Album at the top of the right-hand column on this page.
We were treated royally by everyone associated with the gallery. They maintain a beautiful apartment on the floor above the gallery, for use by artists whose work is showing, and we spent four full days in the city. It was great for me to get to see other artwork in Montréal, and to spend an entire afternoon in the Montréal Gallery of Art, one of the largest and most important museums of art in Canada.
I have traveled extensively in Canada, visiting nearly every major art museum in Canadian cities from coast to coast, and have curated two traveling exhibitions of work from Canada's Contemporary Art Bank and taught courses in Canadian and other Northern art at the University of Alaska. I have canoed, portaged, and camped in Algonquin Park in Northern Ontario, visited remote Hydro-Quebec sites in northern James Bay in winter, and kayaked and camped in Hudson Bay and Richmond Gulf.
My view of the North, and the images I make of it, have been much influenced by those travels, as well as by the work of a number of twentieth and twenty-first century Canadian artists. Knowing how important those experiences have been, and eager to add to them, following the exhibition opening in Montréal Dorli and I spent more than another week exploring eastern Quebec, New Brunswick, Prince Edward Island, and Nova Scotia. We drove part of the way out the Gaspé Peninsula, visited museums in Quebec City and Halifax, Nova Scotia, and ran and hiked along the Bay of Fundy and on trails on Grand Manan Island.
As always, I don't know how long it will be before the experience of those places settles deeply enough in my consciousness for me to have something personal to say about them on canvas, but there is no doubt in my mind that new images will come from these latest travels.