Wednesday, August 29, 2007

Elbow Watercolour Society, August 2007

In the tiny town of Elbow, Saskatchewan, a small bungalow on the two blocks of main street resides as the gallery for the Elbow Watercolour Society. At first glance, there is the feeling that this is another arts society of Sunday landscape painters; but as you start winding through the salon style gallery, there are some formidable works covering its numerous walls.
Viv Brown's effervescent and nostalgic worlds most clearly reflect the end of a certain way of life. Portrayals of long lost structures and land have given way to development; and in the vastness of the land surrounding Elbow, it appears that any change such as the closing of a theatre or the destruction of a tower marks a dramatic impact on the individual who has spent their entire life with the same.
Other notable artists included Brenda Funk, whose mixed media works were solitary in execution and style and Norma Johnson, whose works all had a glow within them, honing a mysterious centre light that illuminated each piece from within.
Some of the artists' bios were available for perusal, and it was not surprising to read that several of these artists had exhibited nationally. The remoteness of a town like Elbow, like many all over the province, effuses a forgotten way of life for most in Canada, a way that was all too common just fifty years ago, and one that now sits as a relic in one of the many antique stores that grace small town main streets.

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