A wonderful art exhibit took place in Rockland last weekend.  150 artworks from 150 local artists celebrating Canada 150th anniversary were displayed at the River Rock Inn.  This great project took the Conseil des Arts Prescott Russell Arts Council (CAPRAC) more than a year to organize after adopting the idea of Rita Iriarte, one of its members.

Saturday the exhibit must have been extremely busy with the presence of the artists, their friends, the press and the many admirers. Sunday morning was quiet at least during my visit.  I was amazed to see so much creativity expressing love for Canada in so many different ways.

There were a great number of acrylics and oil paintings, some watercolors, pastel and pen drawings, digital photography, mixed media works, wood works (table, beaver teeth & tail spoons, a carved robin, ..), sculptures (metal, alabaster, glass, clay, plaster, even soap,..), crafts (quilts, ceinture fléchée, crocheted silk, jewelry,..) .. and also written words (poems, biography, ..), story telling, music, dance choreography, an artisan beer graphic design and a decorative cake.

I was pleased to see works of young artists.  Among these talented youth from various schools, some were from VCI: Esma Gardner-Jones, Joshua Stewart, from Pleasant Corners: Christine Peters, Megan Parent and from The Sommet, in Hawkesbury: Naomie Mavinga Madila, Emma McGurk, Kloey Beaulne, Marie-Eve Leger,..

I particularly admired Rita’s Canadian Mosaic, Naomie’s painted blouse honoring Women’s worth, Eva-Maria Albrecht-Hoedeman’s “Unique Culture and Diversity of People in Canada”, Jody Beaudry’s decorative cake representing the 4 seasons and Susan Cornthwaite-Grenier’s canvas “We Are/ Nous sommes” depicting 150 Canadian symbols.

In the entrance hall, there was a continuous showing of three interesting TFO interviews of Rita Iriarte, of Louise Vien who teaches the art of finger braiding a “ceinture fléchée” and of Daniel Parisien, a wood turner.

Area cultural centres will each welcome 25 of those artists in November. Their art will be shown at Le Centre culturel Le Chenail, The Arbor Gallery, Le Complex récréatif de Rockland, the L’Orignal prison, la Cité campus d’Alfred and La Maison des Arts in Embrun.

I am happy that this important exhibit of Canadian Culture and Heritage will be shown again in the near future.  I enjoyed it very much.

Joëlle Claudon

Joëlle Claudon