Red Deer artist donates collection to Red Deer Arts Council

Red Deer artist donates collection to Red Deer Arts Council

Red Deer artist Ellen Lyons wanted her donation sold as a fundraiser for the arts council

The Christmas season is the perfect time to view the colourful original artworks at the Red Deer Public Library.

After all, selfless goodwill is what The Gift of Ellen Lyons exhibit is all about.

Lyons, a Red Deer artist and art collector, has downsized her private collection by donating 40-plus original works to the Red Deer Arts Council to be used as a fundraiser for the organization that supports local artists.

All the diverse sculptures, prints, paintings and pastel drawings in the library’s Kiwanis Gallery were either created by Lyons, a graduate of the Alberta School of Art, or by friends and contemporaries she admired. These include notable Red Deer-area artists Kate More, Art Whitehead, Mo Leaney, Dennis Moffat and others.

“It’s wonderful of Ellen to think of us and do this,” said Diana Anderson, co-ordinator of the Red Deer Arts Council.

Although art has occasionally been gifted to the Council, Anderson believes this is by far the largest present of artwork it’s ever received. “I think our council is absolutely thrilled to be considered a good repository for something like this.”

The donations range widely in size and style — from an expansive painting of a moody forest watering hole near Fort Vermilion by More, to tiny comical ceramic animal sculptures by Mo Leaney. Some of Leaney’s people sculptures also carry a sense of humour. The case in point is Barbara Lost in Thought, which shows an eccentric smocked artist painting at an easel.

Anderson said she’s “very happy” with the quality and variety of art represented in the show and sale, which also include a Moffat animal print, and various Whitehead’s chalk pastels and paintings of kids, kites and a prairie sky.

Many of the donated works are done by Lyons, who is an accomplished artist in many mediums. Her colour pencil study, Burbank, a confident rendering of a tree bending over a creek bed, is one of Anderson’s favourites. And West of Art’s and North of Art’s are two acrylic expressionistic landscapes also created by the artist/benefactor, who once described herself as a landscape painter who sometimes paints people.

Anderson said Lyons often went on plein air painting excursions with More and Whitehead, and all three have exhibited their works around Central Alberta and beyond since the 1980s.

She noted the artworks in the exhibit are priced reasonably, in the hope they would all go to good homes for Christmas. (Purchased art will be released to buyers on Dec. 22.)

Members of the Red Deer Arts Council – which promotes artists through scholarships, programs, and other supports — will discuss how to best use proceeds from the art sale.

lmichelin@bprda.wpengine.com

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Glen Carritt organized a United We Roll Canada convoy around May 2019 that travelled in 2019. An independent review said he breached council code of conduct rules multiple times. (File photo by Advocate staff)
Former Innisfail town councillor breached code of conduct many times, says review

Consultants say 29 of 36 alleged breaches by Glen Carritt had merit

Members of the Red Deer RCMP downtown patrol monitor for drug activity and property crimes. (Advocate file photo).
Two peace officers are training to join Red Deer’s downtown police patrol unit

This “integrated” unit will be the first in Alberta

Students and staff at Gateway Christian School wore pink Wednesday in support of Pink Shirt Day, a worldwide anti-bullying initiative that was started in 2007. (Photo courtesy of Red Deer Public Schools)
Students, central Alberta community celebrate Pink Shirt Day

Mayor of Sylvan Lake Sean McIntyre supports anti-bullying cause

City of Red Deer has nearly doubled its active COVID-19 case count since Feb. 10 and has 75.6 per cent of the Central zone’s active cases. (File photo)
Another new high: Red Deer hits 574 active COVID-19 cases

Province reports 13 new COVID-19 deaths, 430 new cases

A homeless shelter was promised Red Deer to help the city deal with downtown issues. The city and province finally released a signed agreement on what the facility will offer, a year after a $7 million commitment was made for the project by the province. (Advocate file photo).
City and province take next step in bringing a 24/7 shelter to Red Deer

It will include a detox and counselling services

Meteor spotted over Edmonton, Alta., on Feb. 22, 2021 by several, who took to social media to share their surveillance camera captures. (@KixxAxe/Twitter)
VIDEO: Fireball meteor streaks across sky, spotted by early-morning risers in Alberta, B.C.

Videos of the quick streak of light flashing across the sky before 6:30 a.m. MST

Canada midfielder Sophie Schmidt (13) attempts a shot on goal during the first half of a SheBelieves Cup women's soccer match against Argentina, Sunday, Feb. 21, 2021, in Orlando, Fla. THE CANADIAN PRESS/AP-Phelan M. Ebenhack
Canadian women exit SheBelieves Cup on losing note, blanked 2-0 by Brazil

Canadian women exit SheBelieves Cup on losing note, blanked 2-0 by Brazil

Supporters pray outside court in Stony Plain, Alta., on Wednesday, Feb. 24, 2021, as a trial date was set for Pastor James Coates of GraceLife Church. He is charged with holding Sunday services in violation of Alberta's COVID-19 rules and with breaking conditions of his bail release. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jason Franson
Trial date for jailed Alberta pastor charged with breaking COVID-19 health orders

Trial date for jailed Alberta pastor charged with breaking COVID-19 health orders

Alberta Premier Jason Kenney shakes hands with Jason Nixon, government house leader and environment minister, after Nixon is sworn into office in Edmonton on April 30, 2019. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jason Franson
Alberta eyes recall legislation, focuses on COVID-19 aid in spring sitting

Alberta eyes recall legislation, focuses on COVID-19 aid in spring sitting

CFL commissioner Randy Ambrosie attends a a news conference in Surrey, B.C., on Thursday, February 28, 2019. The CFL faces more challenges in its 2021 return than it did last year when it was forced to cancel its season due to the COVID-19 pandemic. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck
CFL will have to appease more levels of government to get 2021 protocols approved

CFL will have to appease more levels of government to get 2021 protocols approved

European Union Ambassador to Venezuela Isabel Brilhante Pedrosa meets with Venezuelan Foreign Minister Jorge Arreaza at his office in Caracas, Venezuela, Wednesday, Feb. 24, 2021. The meeting was called after the EU sanctioned an additional 19 Venezuelans for "undermining democracy and the rule of law" in Venezuela and the National Assembly declared the EU ambassador "persona non grata." (AP Photo/Ariana Cubillos)
Sanctions prompt Venezuela to expel head of EU delegation

Sanctions prompt Venezuela to expel head of EU delegation

Capitol Police Acting Chief Yogananda Pittman departs a ceremony memorializing U.S. Capitol Police officer Brian Sicknick, as an urn with his cremated remains lies in honor on a black-draped table at the center of the Capitol Rotunda, Wednesday, Feb. 3, 2021, in Washington. (Erin Schaff/The New York Times via AP, Pool)
Chief: Capitol Police were warned of violence before riot

Chief: Capitol Police were warned of violence before riot

Relatives of inmates cry outside the Centro de Privación de Libertad Zona 8 prison where riots broke out in Guayaquil, Ecuador, Tuesday, Feb. 23, 2021. Deadly riots broke out in prisons in three cities across the country due to fights between rival gangs, according to police. (AP Photo/Angel Dejesus)
Gang clashes result in Ecuador’s deadliest prison riots ever

Gang clashes result in Ecuador’s deadliest prison riots ever

El Chapo’s wife goes from obscurity to celebrity to arrest

El Chapo’s wife goes from obscurity to celebrity to arrest

Most Read