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Bog House Mixed media and Found objects, Susan Collacott, 2010

SUSAN COLLACOTT: MY PERSONAL BOG or ‘Bog House’

Opening Reception: November 23, 2017, 2 - 4pm
Exhibition Dates: November 23 – December 6, 2017

Cowichan Valley Arts Council PORTALS GALLERY
2687 James Street
Duncan, B.C. V9L 2X5
250-746-1633
http://cowichanvalleyartscouncil.ca/portals/
Hours: Monday-Saturday, 10am–5pm
Gallery is accessible

‘My Personal Bog’ began after making a pilot project named ‘Interference’, of a whale combined with a transistor radio, that addresses the plight of dwindling whale populations encountering the sounds of sonar made by naval vessels. In keeping with the idea of embedding fossils into her digital and painted images, Susan embedded objects of a personal nature in bog like materials as though they were fossilized or petrified remains 10,000 years hence. The house project became more than it seemed at the beginning. It connected directly to her early years of childhood when her grandfather taught her to build the furniture, using his band saw, for the house that he had made for her (an experience that gave her the confidence to use machinery). She could imagine the lives which would identify with roles played by her family to create scenes of make- believe. These games were analogous to dreams of girls everywhere, to marry, have a house, children, furnishings, art and happiness. In reality, dreams don’t always play out the way one hopes or imagined. “Sometimes, you don’t get the opportunities in life to make those choices”, her father told her.

The bog house became a more universal expression of dreams gone array and buried in the past. Metaphorically, it represents the failures of the dreams of so many young women. Alternatively, it has other interpretations appearing as though a tsunami has gone through the house or a landslide, leaving in its wake piles of mud and debris, destroying the interior and flushing its furnishings out in a disastrous flood. It could be any phenomena of human or nature that makes a ruin of lives. The interpretation of the photos deepens the viewer’s experience, becoming more ambiguous. The reality of the house comes into question as it may not be understood to be a doll house.


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Bog House Mixed media and Found objects, Susan Collacott, 2010

Susan Collacott spent 3 years in the USA earning an MA and MFA in Fine Art at Northern Illinois University having exposure to American POP artist Wayne Thiebaud and Krishna Reddy (Master Printer) before studio MFAs were offered in Canada. She began her career at the AGO in Toronto teaching Art and was selected by the gallery to participate in ‘Artists and Their Work’. She began exhibiting with the Merton Gallery and was on the committee for Int’l. Women’s Year 1977 in Toronto coordinating an Art exhibit for 400 women at Harbourfront. She enjoyed a career in painting and teaching spanning over four decades. Born in Windsor, Collacott has travelled on all continents, seeing the evidence of earths on-going creation; its wildlife in the ocean/on land as well as dinosaur resting places. Traveling via hiking, touring, kayaking and scuba all means to be transformed in a process of contemplation, writing and making art. Susan retired in 2003 to focus on her painting. She is a great supporter of the environment and animal habitats. Her paintings are in collections here and in England and France.

Featured artwork: Mixed Media and Photography: Collection of the artist.

scollacott@yahoo.ca
SUSANCOLLACOTT.COM
www.ccca.ca

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