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Geneva Haley: Scraps


This exhibition features twenty paintings by emerging Calgary-based artist Geneva Haley. Haley encourages viewers to develop relationships with her paintings through their own experiences. What can the landscape teach you about yourself? This is the question Haley asked herself as she developed this series of hand-painted illustrations. Through visual metaphors, these works express the struggle to balance chaos and control. Haley explains that “as a lifelong Albertan, I believe that examples of our own performativity leak into the ways in which we represent and manipulate our landscape, which many of us consider an aspect of our collective identity.”

These works were inspired by Haley’s graphic novel that explores teenage-hood in rural Alberta. Her series of illustrations conveys isolation, fragility, and destruction in small-town Alberta, and the impact these things have on our subconscious and consciousness. The slightly melancholy subject matter is balanced by an upbeat aesthetic, influenced by her wicked sense of humour and “don’t take life too seriously” attitude. The spectrum produces endearing imagery and a relatable visual narrative of her life in small-town Alberta.

Geneva Haley is originally from Olds, Alberta, where she grew up on a fifteen-acre barley farm. Being the youngest and the only girl in a family of five children, she spent a lot of time on her own exploring her imagination in this rural habitat. Haley studied at the Alberta University of the Arts, completed her Bachelor of Design in illustration in 2016, and currently runs her own illustration studio in Calgary.

Portraits in Light

This exhibition will feature 20 portraits and a 150-page book of portraits by Petra Malá Miller. Originally from the Czech Republic and now based in Lethbridge, Malá Miller began her Portraits in Light series to become more acquainted with her new home in southeast Alberta. Her portraits represent the individuals she met throughout her community. They are portraits of friends, schoolmates, colleagues, students, and friends of friends.

The artist’s portrait sessions were an extension of the relationship between Malá Miller and her subjects. She explains, “My portraits grow from an exchange between my subjects and myself and are made in a classical portrait style using a soft light, while I emphasize my subject’s gaze in a three-quarter pose. My subjects are at once vulnerable and yielding. Each person’s appearance is clearly articulated, but his or her social status is cast in doubt, placed on the same symbolic level. Each person is depicted as if without clothing.” These works are quiet and powerful, and capture humanity’s vulnerability and strength. They express how we are simultaneously similar but unique.

Petra Malá Miller grew up in Blatnice, a village in southern Moravia. Her photographic work explores the poetics of childhood, innocence, aging, memory, and loss and raises questions surrounding representation, cultural identity, the individual, the family, and the community. Malá Miller earned her MFA from the Academy of Arts, Architecture and Design in Prague (2008).

This exhibition is curated by Xanthe Isbister, Esplanade Arts and Heritage Centre


Women X Women

This exhibition features portraits of women by fifteen female artists. It showcases works from the Alberta Foundation for the Arts’ permanent collection that span several decades—from 1947 to 2015. The motivation behind the female focus came from a 2017 Canadian Art magazine article on gender diversity within Canadian galleries and museums. Consider the following statistics: women constitute 63 percent of living artists in Canada, but in 2012, only 36% of exhibitions were solo female, compared to 64% solo male. This exhibition not only highlights the conceptual strength and facility each of the works conveys—it also celebrates the vast scope of femininity and the female psyche through the eyes of women.

Watercolour paintings, etchings, charcoal and pencil drawings, inject prints, sewn plastic, photography, mixed-fibre yarn, and oil on canvas are the various mediums used to create the eighteen works featured in this exhibition. The artists include Helen Mackie, Marion Nicoll, Bev Pike, Ruth Syme, Dana Shukster, Jill Thomson, Maureen Harvey, Megan Dickie, Allyson Glenn, Carolyn Campbell, Dana Holst, Petra Malá Miller, Megan Morman, Tammy Salzl, and Allison Tunis.

2018-2019 Tour Schedule

Click on the link to open a pdf of the 2018-2019 Tour Schedule