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For Immediate Release
May 9, 2005


Mary Anne Barkhouse and Michael Belmore's Sanctuary
contemplates the intersection of nature and technology


On Wednesday, May 18, all are welcome to attend the opening reception for Sanctuary, an exhibition of recent works by Mary Anne Barkhouse and Michael Belmore.  The artists will give a free public talk at 7 p.m. prior to the opening reception at 8 p.m.

This exhibition has been organized and circulated by Art Gallery of Peterborough. In this multi-media exhibition, the artists examine environmental concerns and indigenous culture through the use of animal imagery like beavers and crows, juxtaposed against different background situations, both rural and urban.

In the catalogue essay, Bonnie Devine describes the work of the two artists:

Mary Anne Barkhouse and Michael Belmore have exhibited together several times since 1997. Their collaborative installations, sometimes located in the gallery, sometimes in on-site urban streetscapes, are unique in their ability to interweave environmental concerns with contemporary First Nations social/historical discourse. Incorporating animal and forest motifs to address important issues of conservation, depredation and loss, Barkhouse and Belmore also ingeniously deploy their respective aesthetic traditions to concoct a rich cultural dialogue.

Mary Anne Barkhouse is a descendant of a long line of artists from the Nimpkish band, Kwakiutl Nation of Alert Bay.  She is a graduate of the Ontario College of Art, Toronto and a member of the Royal Canadian Academy of Arts. She works in various media such as sculpture, photography and jewellery.   Her work can be found in the collections of the Canada Council Art Bank, the University of British Columbia Museum of Anthropology and the Department of Indian and Northern Affairs.

Michael Belmore, who is of Ojibway heritage, born north of Thunder Bay, graduated in Sculpture/Installation from the Ontario College of Art in 1994. Belmore has shown his work extensively in Canada including exhibitions at the Woodland Cultural Centre, Brantford, the Power Plant Contemporary Art Gallery, Toronto and the Toronto Sculpture Garden.  His works are included in the collections of the Indian Art Centre, Hull; the McMichael Canadian Art Collection, Kleinberg; Thunder Bay Art Gallery and the Agnes Etherington Art Centre in Kingston, among others.  Barkhouse and Belmore, recently completed the sculpture Esker for the Millennium Park in Peterborough.

The exhibition continues on view at the Tom Thomson Art Gallery through July 3, 2005. Sanctuary runs concurrently with Steve Irvine: Collaborations with Chaos, a survey of the Wiarton-based potter's recent vessels, held over to June 26 in the Jennings David Young Gallery.

For more information on contemporary art at the Tom Thomson Art Gallery, visit www.tomthomson.org

[image: Mary Anne Barkhouse, wake (detail), 2002; bronze glass, wood resin, stone; variable dimensions; photo courtesy of the artist]

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For interviews or photographs, please contact: Stuart Reid, Director/Curator
Tom Thomson Memorial Art Gallery, 840 First Avenue West, Owen Sound, Ontario N4K 4K4
(519) 376-1932 www.tomthomson.org



 

 

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