2nd Annual Symposium Speakers

The Second Annual Art of the Peace Arts Symposium welcomes artists and arts lovers to share their work and stories. Guest speakers Lyndal Osborne, Jack Burman and Clint Roenisch talk about their own experiences.

Lyndal Osbourne

LYNDAL OSBOURNE

Edmonton-based artist Lyndal Osborne gathers organic material and produces installations that highlight the effects of these when exposed over time. The self-described obsessive collector makes artworks of just about every manner of matter, including banana peels, avocado shells, pods, and oranges or half-grapefruits. Cultivated Objects', one of Lundal Osborne's installations of organic material.For a recent show that toured China, Osborne produced grid-style tables of found and organic objects that represent our ever-changing natural environment. The show, which featured four Alberta women artists, was the first Canadian installation exhibition to be mounted in China. The artists curated the show and travelled to its two openings.

Osborne loves to focus on what generally goes unnoticed. While some of her works feature readily-accepted ‘beautiful’ matter, as do her collections of shells or kelp or barnacles, others see a usually-discarded object heaped in a pile, as with the banana peels featured in an exhibition she had at The Prairie Art Gallery several years ago. Their black and shrivelled shells now represented something entirely different; something dark and earthy, and not the golden arches they’d been in their glory days.

In her installation entitled ‘Cultivated Objects’, Osborne compartmentalizes objects including sea balls, shells, sponges, clove-studded oranges, wheat grass, day lilies, shark’s eggs, and tea bags. Those and many other objects had to be carefully wrapped and documented for shipment to China. The wheatgrass actually had to be planted on-site by Osborne so it would grow in time for the opening.Jack Burman

JACK BURMAN

In a review of Jack Burman’s photographs at Toronto’s Clint Roenisch Gallery last June, Betty Ann Jordan of Toronto Life magazine writes: “Plumbing the poetics of death, Burman’s nuanced, preternaturally detailed colour images address his favourite line from the Japanese poet Matsuo Basho: “Every moment of life is the last, every poem is a death poem.”

Jack Burman, Argentina #11Sounds a bit sad, if not ghoulish, but arts critics agree that the Toronto photographer’s large-format works, currently on show at The Prairie Art Gallery, lean more toward beauty than the macabre. In his piece “Death Never Looked So Good,” Globe and Mail reviewer John Michael Dault writes: “The radical modernity of Burman’s approach to his troubling subject – his way of compositionally isolating and highlighting a severed head, a floating heart, an unfurled cadaver stretched out across the bottom of a photograph like someone stretched out on the grass – makes his photographs so visually arresting that the pure aesthetic pleasure they offer appears to work against the enormity of what you are actually seeing.”

Burman photographed preserved specimens of the human body in medical museums and laboratories in Eastern Europe and Latin America. Of particular interest are his photographs of the work of a famous 1930s anatomist, Dr. Pedro Ara, best known in his home country of Argentina for his posthumous preservation of Evita Peron.

Catherine Osborne of The National Post writes that Burman’s “Argentina #11” was “apparently Ara’s signature work. His head is tilted to one side and his eyes are cast downward in an incredibly human-felt pose of dignity.”

Clint Roenisch, from whose gallery the Burman works were sent to The Prairie Art Gallery, says of the works: “Most photographs stop time. Jack’s perpetuate it.”

Roenisch Gallery

CLINT ROENISCH

Clint Roenisch, director of the Clint Roenisch Gallery, joins Jack Burman, Lyndal Osborne and Peter von Tiesenhausen at The Art of the Peace Symposium October 22nd and 23nd in Grande Prairie. Roenisch is the director of the Clint Roenisch Gallery in Toronto. He was born in Calgary and studied human geography and art history at Queen’s University. He was public curator at both the Kelowna Art Gallery and the Kitchener-Waterloo Art Gallery, during which time he organized over 35 exhibitions. The Roenisch Gallery opened in 2003 and has shown the work of von Tiesenhausen and Burman, as well as Andre Kertesz, Raymond Pettibon, Harold Clunder and Sylvain Bouthillette. His address at the Symposium covers his work on these exhibitions as well as his transition from curator to art dealer.


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