Light shines through clouds, bottles and off water surfaces in Transitions, the 2009 Alberta Wide art show at the Red Deer Museum and Art Gallery.
Many of the 60 paintings and mixed-media works by members of community art clubs across the province attempt to capture the ephemeral quality of light — including Twin Lakes, a watercolour of sun reflecting off tranquil water by Winfield artist Maryann Nomann.
Nomann’s accomplished painting won in the beginner category, and was among several novice works that impressed museum’s visitor services staffer Sarah Brodie, who remarked “I’m surprised by some of the beginner and youth art.”
The youth category winner in the 30th annual juried exhibition is a turbulent abstract called Nocturne of Shadow, created with encaustic wax by Vanessa Rusinko.
Among the more effective depictions of diffused light are in a pastel called Clouds, by Jean Richards, a watercolour, Bergenia Leaves, by advanced artist Diane Dahl, and Early Morning Mist —Ranch, by master-class artist Joan Wilson.
Lorene Runham, of Olds, created the winning painting, Autumn’s Charm, by featuring bits of brilliant blue sky peeking through complimentary orange foliage.
Two other eye-catching works displayed at the museum’s Parkland Mall location are by advanced Red Deer artist Susan Barker. She won prizes for Vino, which shows light streaming through wine bottles and reflecting off a shiny bar surface, as well as a watercolour that looks upward at a construction worker crossing metal scaffolding.
The large, bold oil painting, Sunkissed Poppies, by Marcia Schmidt, of Westerose is another category winner. Brodie admitted it’s her favorite, because of the vibrant colour.
Portraits of people, livestock and pets are also feature in this exhibit, which draws from the best community art in the province’s north and central zones. Unfortunately, Southern Alberta did not host a zone art show this year, so is not represented in the Alberta Wide exhibit, said Brodie.
She considers the show to be a definite crowd pleaser because of the sheer diversity of art it offers. “There’s something for everybody.”
Winning artworks from this exhibit will be displayed at the University of Alberta Extensions show once Transitions closes at the Red Deer Museum and Art Gallery on Sept. 27.