New art exhibit paints pictures with words

Autumn Comes by Jill Hardcastle. (Patrick Davies photo - 100 Mile Free Press)Autumn Comes by Jill Hardcastle. (Patrick Davies photo - 100 Mile Free Press)
Ron Conway is pleased that Cariboo Artists were able to take so much inspiration from his poetry. (Patrick Davies photo - 100 Mile Free Press)Ron Conway is pleased that Cariboo Artists were able to take so much inspiration from his poetry. (Patrick Davies photo - 100 Mile Free Press)
Dream of Live by Sheryl Fremlin. (Patrick Davies photo - 100 Mile Free Press)Dream of Live by Sheryl Fremlin. (Patrick Davies photo - 100 Mile Free Press)
A series of paintings based on Ron Conway’s poem The Rill. (Patrick Davies photo - 100 Mile Free Press)A series of paintings based on Ron Conway’s poem The Rill. (Patrick Davies photo - 100 Mile Free Press)
A Light in the Woods by Neil Pinkett based on a poem of the same name by Ron Conway.

Though woods on darkened night a welcome light, 
That melts the bitter cold and dries the damp. 
How is it that this glow can so incite? 
The answer is the hand that lights the lamp.

(Patrick Davies photo - 100 Mile Free Press)
A felted wool creation by Trish Chung entitled Sallowpad. (Patrick Davies photo - 100 Mile Free Press)A felted wool creation by Trish Chung entitled Sallowpad. (Patrick Davies photo - 100 Mile Free Press)
At the Beach by Anita Edwards. (Patrick Davies photo - 100 Mile Free Press)At the Beach by Anita Edwards. (Patrick Davies photo - 100 Mile Free Press)
The Dance by Kathy Crawshay. (Patrick Davies photo - 100 Mile Free Press)The Dance by Kathy Crawshay. (Patrick Davies photo - 100 Mile Free Press)
Imagine by Bryan Austerberry. (Patrick Davies photo - 100 Mile Free Press)Imagine by Bryan Austerberry. (Patrick Davies photo - 100 Mile Free Press)
Selfie by Barb Brown. (Patrick Davies photo - 100 Mile Free Press)Selfie by Barb Brown. (Patrick Davies photo - 100 Mile Free Press)
Adrift #2 by Barb Brown. (Patrick Davies photo - 100 Mile Free Press)Adrift #2 by Barb Brown. (Patrick Davies photo - 100 Mile Free Press)

Poetry and visual art combine this month in eye-catching ways at Parkside Gallery with Inspired Imagery: Ron Conway and Guests.

The show is based around and features the poetry of Bridge Lake poet Ron Conway. He said he was approached by the gallery’s curator Barb Brown about doing a show last fall, much to his surprise.

“I thought that just poetry in an art gallery might be a little bit stark so I suggested maybe I could collaborate with some artists here,” Conway said.

Brown put him in contact with Patsy Granberg of the Cariboo Artists Guild who loved the idea of collaborating with him. Conway then provided the guild with 40 poems for them to take inspiration from. He intentionally chose poems he felt had good imagery and would inspire the creation of a painting.

All told, he said about 40 paintings, sculptures and fabric art were produced, though not all were based on the poems he provided. Some artists doubled up on the poems while others went looking through his books and found poems that spoke to them. Conway said he was very impressed by how they interpreted the 28 poems that will be displayed at the gallery.

READ MORE: Poetry book captures observations about life

Conway himself wrote a few new poems to go with paintings they submitted, which he said was fun to do. Called ekphrastic poetry, he said he really likes riffing off another piece of art when interpreting it verbally by either enhancing the artist’s vision or providing his own interpretation

“I’m thrilled. It’s art begetting art. This is a unique show and I’ve never heard of anybody else doing a multi-media show like this with writing and fine art together, so I’m hoping we get a pretty good response,” Conway said.

Conway has lived in the Cariboo for 15 years and got into poetry as a way to communicate with his mother, herself a poet. Over the last five years, Conway has begun writing poetry and has released two books Slightly After Dark and Hidden Agenda, available at the gallery.

I just sort of caught the bug and been writing ever since. It’s a great way to express yourself and quite satisfying. To me it’s an art form, I get a sense of satisfaction painting a picture with words.”

The show runs from May 14 to June 12 at Parkside Gallery, which is open Monday to Friday 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. and Saturdays from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m.



patrick.davies@100milefreepress.net

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