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Histories of Family, Indigenous Activism and Photography Told in the Galleries at the Esplanade.

Post Date:01/29/2020 2:00 PM

Medicine HatOn Friday, January 31 at 7 PM, join us in the Galleries for the Public Reception for the two new art exhibitions: Susan Sakamoto: Boro and The Writing on the Wall: The Work of Dr. Joane Cardinal-Schubert, RCA, as well as the Heritage Gallery exhibition Snapshot: The History of Photography. There will be refreshments and live music by Taking August. Admission is free.

Susan Sakamoto: Boro
FEBRUARY 1, 2020 - MARCH 28, 2020

Exhibition Tour with the Artist
SAT Feb 1 | 10:30 AM | Free Admission

In her most recent bodies of work, local artist Susan Sakamoto delves into the deeper mysteries of life through personal and family history. Using multiple layers of paint and other media, and generations of original family documents, Sakamoto’s process is akin to that of the Japanese patchwork technique, boro. Stemming from economic necessity, boro clothing embodies a record of generations of use, and the beauty of impermanence and imperfection. Sakamoto’s courageously experimental process of adding, covering, uncovering, obscuring and revealing yields complex and highly felt works which are simultaneously delicate and detailed, tough and physical, evoking the ongoing enigmas of memory and family life.
Raised in High River, Calgary and Medicine Hat, Alberta, Susan Sakamoto was influenced by growing up in the paint business, which provided a great respect for the craft of painting, and conversations about the technical aspects of paint and colour. She lives and works in Medicine Hat, where she has maintained an art practice in painting and encaustic for several decades. She has exhibited in Alberta, British Columbia, and Italy, and her work is held in private, public and corporate collections in Canada, the United States, Japan, and Europe.

The Writing on the Wall: Works of Dr. Joane Cardinal-Schubert, RCA
FEBRUARY 1, 2020 - MARCH 28, 2020

Curators Tour
SAT Feb 1 | 10:30 AM | Free Admission

A profound and impressive retrospective of the work of the celebrated artist, activist, curator, poet, writer and mentor, The Writing on the Wall: The Work of Dr. Joane Cardinal-Schubert, RCA weaves through Indigenous activism, seldom-told Canadian histories and environmental issues. Joane Cardinal-Schubert’s work melds playfulness with astute observation and an informed critique of the world around her based in in-depth historical knowledge.

Joane Cardinal-Schubert (1942-2006) was born in Red Deer, AB, a member of the Kainai (Blood) Nation, and received a BFA from the University of Calgary. In addition to her acclaimed practice as an artist, she was a successful and influential curator, lecturer, poet and director of video and Indigenous theatre. She was a member of the Royal Canadian Academy of Arts and a recipient of the Queen Elizabeth II Golden Jubilee Medal, the Commemorative Medal of Canada and the National Aboriginal Achievement Award in Art.

The Writing on the Wall is curated by Lindsey V. Sharman, organized and circulated by Nickle Galleries, University of Calgary, with assistance from the Alberta Foundation for the Arts and the Canada Council for the Arts.

Snapshot: The History of Photography
DECEMBER 21, 2019 - JUNE 20, 2020

The first commercial cameras came on the market in the 1880s, about the same time that the first train crossed the South Saskatchewan River into a town of tents, Medicine Hat. Explore the technological, artistic, and social changes of photography as it developed alongside the story of this community through changing technology and the lens of photographers within the region. From daguerreotypes to digital, we have been recording the people, places, and activities of the world around us. Capture glimpses of the evolution of photography through a Medicine Hat lens in Snapshot: The History of Photography.


For further information, interviews or images please contact:
Joanne Marion
Superintendent, Exhibitions & Collections
City of Medicine Hat Community Development Department / Esplanade Arts & Heritage Centre
403.502.8583 |

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