artists in conversation

Yesterday afternoon we went to see an exhibition at the Seymour Art Gallery called Odd Occurrences: Narrative in the Art of Kristin Bjornerud, Tamara Bond, Tomoyo Ihaya, and Carrie Walker.

Here is the exhibition statement:
The artists in Odd Occurrences build on centuries-old traditions of oral and visual storytelling to create images that are wildly imaginative and intriguingly strange, mysteriously disturbing or oddly funny. In days gone by people were familiar with stories told through the spoken and written word and pictures because they usually depicted events from religious life, history, and traditions or communicated prevailing myths and legends. Today, however, in our pluralistic, postmodern society, we cannot simply assume commonalities of experience-there is no single narrative. Instead, the artists in Odd Occurrences offer a rich mixture of fabricated narratives derived from personal experience, cultural origins, current events, dreams, myths, and folk-tales. Telling their tales with human figures, animals, and objects, the four artists use formats that range from symbolic descriptions of occurrences to odd juxtapositions of found and newly invented imagery. These open-ended, nonlinear narratives, often stories suggested but not fully realized, allow for multiple levels of viewer interpretation.

Beautiful, exquisitely created work by all, using various drawing and painting media.

We timed it to also take in the Conversation with Guest Curator Rachel Rosenfield Lafo and three of the artists and the audience. It centered and elaborated on the above themes and was very accessible and enjoyable for the audience and added to the appreciation of the work. I found it most interesting to learn that the curator had seen these artists’ works in separate exhibitions and had noted certain similarities between them. And as curators sometimes do, she came up with an exhibition theme and proposal, invited the artists to take part, and arranged this exhibition venue.

On a more personal note, I want to mention that Tomoyo Ihaya is a long time friend whose work I’ve written about here many times (search here if you like). I was sorry to miss the opening night when she gave a talk, for she was unable to join the others at this later date because by then she had already returned to northern India where she spends much of each year. In addition I have met Tamara, a friend and fellow art school graduate of our daughter Elisa.

The exhibition continues to October 14th, so if you are in the Vancouver area, I highly recommend a visit to see this wonderful art, in this lovely location in Deep Cove.

Regarding the images below, these are quick photos of some of the work in the gallery taken just as the chairs were being set up for the talk, and with permission and a promise not to take closeups. I hope these give a slight idea of each artist’s work and that you may be intrigued enough to visit their websites or other links.

by Kristin Bjornerud

by Tamara Bond

by Tomoyo Ihaya

by Carrie Walker

September 24, 2012 in Art Exhibitions, Being an Artist, Folk Legends & Myths, Other artists by Marja-Leena