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AGB News

News, notes and the latest general information about the Art Gallery of Bancroft.


Our annual juried show is more true to the calendar than the season. What it does have in common is its unpredictability. The acceptance of many, seemingly all, of the entries takes some of the edge off the event.

To yours truly, it is not just the thrill of being thus honored, and more often than not with an award, it is as well when a piece is rejected. The curious “Why?” that adds to what this event is much about.

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My first impression was “WOW!” This is California; Mozart taking Pollock for a ride to sunny Disneyland. A tsunami of colour smartly framed in simple black. But it’s curious how music as diverse as Mozart and Holst can evoke a disturbing sameness as presented here. The common denominator music is downgraded to an M word. Such commonality should not interfere with the enjoyment of the expertly flowing pigment, which it happily does not.

On Holst’s “Jupiter” what else but his godly forefinger points at fingerpainting. Gustav Holst’s frigid immensity of space, the big bang and such, escapes this viewer. I’m not unsympathetic to abstract ideas, it’s the trite arguments they nourish which unfortunately their practitioners don’t let go. Myself included. So let Jupiter’s finger point to the harmony of all great music.

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Thoughts from a Gallery Volunteer -
In this, the never ending winter of our discontent, the latest show at the Art Gallery Bancroft is like a massive shot of Vitamin B!
The  paintings being shown are explosions of colour, vibrancy and movement created by the artist, Allan O'Marra, to express the responses and emotions he feels when listening to some favourite musical pieces. Stop by and see if the art on display mirrors your own reaction to the musical selection. Visitors to the gallery have already had fun trying to match the music to the painting with varying degrees of success!
At the show opening last Friday evening, Allan described the process, and made it all sound so simple. How wonderful it must be to have the skills and talent to create such beautiful paintings inspired by the feelings that music has the power to evoke in us!
I would love to see Allan tackle some more contemporary showstoppers, Leonard Cohen's "Hallelujah" for instance , Pink Floyd's "Dark Side of the Moon".....Lady Gaga not so much, but suggestions would be very welcome. Perhaps we can talk Allan into a follow up show.
Allan is heading up a workshop from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. on Sunday this weekend (April 13th) at the Gallery. His approachable and easy manner and many years of teaching experience will make it a fun and enjoyable day, and how better to beat the blahs than by unleashing your inner abstract!
Stop by the gallery or call  613 332 1542 to register, fee is 65 dollars for the full day workshop.
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Tagged in: Allan OMarra Workshop

The Art Gallery Bancroft (AGB) along with Loyalist College is developing a Summer Arts Program with a series of workshops in diverse artistic media.  Workshops will be run under the Loyalist College aegis.

AGB is inviting you to participate in this initiative, which will take place over the weekends of July 12/13th and July 26/27th in Bancroft. Classes can be targeted at any level of skill, experience or age, and courses can run from 1 to 4 days.

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At this year's "Michal Manson Memorial Student Show", we are confronted with some welcome focus on First Nation's imagery. Here and there a flattering nod to the great Norval Morriseau. Many pieces show good technical proficiency, such as the two by Shannon Reid, both titled "Untitled"and one of the two honoured with "Best Painting".

Myself, I was much more impressed by the unhonoured "Untitled" Reid.  The fiery orange to red splash in the beastly jaw then drawn to the half-hidden eyes in the chiseled features, so common on today's supermodels. Great. Disney-friendly happy comic ideas appear to have left the planet, and so hints of cosmic ventures which seemed to fascinate young, budding artists, as I recall, years ago.

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Contact Details

Art Gallery of Bancroft
10 Flint Avenue
P.O. Box 398
Bancroft, Ontario
K0L 1C0

Phone: (613) 332-1542
Email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
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