Images from this event are available HERE!Prairie Excellence.ca Manitoba Exhibition Venues: April 28 – May 28, 2011 Gallery 1CO3, University of Winnipeg, MB
Feb 1 – March 31, 2012 Sam Walter Museum, The Pas, MB
Prairie Excellence is a juried exhibition representing the very best of contemporary fine craft from the Prairies. Featuring pieces in various media by 35 artists, the show is a unique and balanced blend of work from each of the Prairie Provinces. While some of the featured artists, like Winnipeg’s Grace Nickel, Kathryne Koop and Keith Oliver, are well established, the exhibit also showcases craft artists who are relatively new to the scene. This is a unique opportunity to view the work of emerging, mid-career and established artists in one place.
The call for entry for Prairie Excellence was widely distributed throughout Manitoba, Saskatchewan and Alberta in late 2009. The response was both exciting and daunting—276 pieces were submitted by 163 artists. A selection committee consisting of one curator from each province was assembled. In their first round of review based on submitted photos, resumes and print material, the committee selected 50 pieces. An in-person selection stage was held at the Alberta Crafts Council Gallery in Edmonton and 35 pieces were eventually chosen for the exhibition. The committee was challenged to look at work in all craft media, ranging from jewelry to large sculptural pieces. They discussed and sometimes argued about issues of conceptual, creative and technical excellence. They were further challenged to choose recipients for best of province awards and recipients for best emerging, mid-career and established artist awards. To reflect the breadth of the submissions, the committee members also opted for an honourable mention in each of the emerging, mid-career and established artist categories.
The show marks an exciting new collaboration between the Manitoba, Saskatchewan and Alberta Crafts Councils. These organizations exist to promote the work of craft artists from their own province by developing the careers of new and veteran artists and by increasing public awareness about great art being created in our midst. By working together, the prairie Crafts Councils can take this mission even further.
Manitoba artists in this exhibition include Grace Nickel, Kathryne Koop, Robert Wilson, Sue Sutherland, Teresa Burrows, Dave Wasylyshen, Jordan van Sewell, Crystal Nykoluk, Keith Oliver, Nancy Hall and Tibor Bodi.
Image: Robert Wilson, Sliced Antler Vessel, Antler, pine form, casting resin, dark roast coffee, 2009, 8″x8″+ finial