This fall, we are asking our viewers to experience a world created by the imaginations of contemporary artists. When you walk through the front door this season, you will enter a world created in the minds of some of the most engaging emerging artists in Canada today.
So, we ask, what is the power of imagination? Does it make you envision a world of Elsewheres and Magical Mystery Beards, as in Jay Dart’s Greetings from Yawnder! Does it allow you to disrupt the status quo and express individual experience, as in The Images in Our Heads? Does the freedom of the imagination transport you to a far away land, as in Robert Bourdeau’s Edge of the Visible, or does it take you right back home, as you experience Canadian landscape in Land, Sea & Air?
Imagination is key to our exhibitions as it is essential to the artist’s practices. By imagining alternate spaces, we can create new realities with which to forge identity and experiment with new ideas.
When you visit, we hope you will allow your mind to wander and be open as you experience the installations. You will have the opportunity to be both the viewer and the story-teller as you inhabit worlds filled with creativity and fueled by the most powerful material in the artist’s studio: imagination.
A retired teacher, Steven Bland has been volunteering with the RMG as a tour guide, gallery attendant, community outreach facilitator and research assistant since 2013.
Dynamically guiding schools and private groups, Steven goes above and beyond for visitors. When touring the “Red Hat Ladies”, he took it upon himself to create his own Red Hat, adorning the brim with flowers and a scarf. As gallery attendant for our “Pride” celebration, Steven accented our usual ”Ask Me” buttons to include rainbow ribbons and created comprehensive booklets with exhibition information for newer volunteers.
Steven Bland gives a tour
Steven ran a gelliplate workshop for volunteers, creating materials for our art tent at the annual “Tree Lighting” ceremony. He developed a project and donated supplies to our Art Express tent at Oshawa’s annual Peony Festival. While facilitating projects, he promotes gallery programs and events; A vital component in engaging the public and broadening our reach as an organization.
The Red Hat ladies Tours
His newest project teams up our Senior Curator and Manager of Community and Volunteer Development. Steven will research and interview community members who have witnessed the gallery’s evolution over the past 50 years. This aims to engage and educate the public about the gallery’s impact on artists, citizens and local history in celebration of the RMG’s 50th Anniversary in 2017.
Steven Bland with school tour
Steven’s energy, enthusiasm and continued support means we can reach beyond staff resources and engage citizens on a higher level, serving our statement of purpose: The Robert McLaughlin Gallery is dedicated to sharing, exploring and engaging with our communities through the continuing story of modern and contemporary Canadian art.