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Giving artists a new voice

The breadth of artistry at Red Deer College will be unveiled and shared with the community in the first of a new series of visiting artist lectures.

Eleven of RDC’s visual arts instructors and technicians will be the first guests of the Art 101 lecture series for 2013. On Tuesday, the staff members will get about six minutes each to present and talk about the artworks they create to an open audience in RDC’s Margaret Parsons Theatre.

On the guest list are: painters David More, James Trevelyan and Daniel Anhorn; sculptors Jason Frizzell, Tanya Zuzak-Collard, Avery Andrykew and Ian Cook; ceramicists Trudy Golley and Michael Flaherty; printmaker Marnie Blair; and performance artist Robin Lambert.

The first 7 p.m. lecture looks inward at college instructors because much of their art is little known to Red Deer residents, said Lambert, the college’s curator of visual art. He believes even RDC students might not be overly familiar with works their instructors create in their own time.

The scope of future lectures will encompass Canadian and some international artists because “it’s exciting to see what’s happening in the wider world,” added Lambert, who believes Red Deer is a growing city on the verge of becoming more cosmopolitan.

Although this series is part of a mandatory for-credit class for RDC visual arts students, all community members are welcome to attend the free lectures — which will continue with other guest artists every two to three weeks.

Lambert explained that Red Deer doesn’t yet attract a wide array of travelling art shows, so the college is taking the opportunity to introduce a broader spectrum of works than might, otherwise, be exhibited here.

While some of the art might be a stretch for some tastes, he believes local residents are more open minded than given credit for. “Red Deer could be labelled as a more conservative community than it is because we’ve found that every (avant-garde) artist who’s come here has been embraced.”

Some artists who have previously spoken are New Zealand-born Canadian artist Bev Tosh, who brought images of her War Brides installation, which was inspired by her mother’s history; Northern Alberta artist Peter von Tiesenhausen; Jordan Bennett, an aboriginal artist-in-residence at the University of Alberta; and performance/conceptual artist Brette Gabel.

Lambert said although the 90-minute talks were not widely publicized in the past, they have proven popular with all kinds of people — not just art students. He recalled one elderly woman approached to say “ ‘That was great!’ and that she was really glad her granddaughter had asked her to come.”

Lambert believes the show-and-tell series illustrates that art can be fun, as well as culturally enriching.

For more information, call 403-342-3187.



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