Spring Exhibitions Opening Reception at the Art Gallery of Mississauga

Haven’t been to an exhibition in quite some time, so I was more than happy to go to the opening of the Spring Exhibitions at the AGM (no not Annual General Meeting- the Art Gallery of Mississauga, we all get that in our heads too!). There are two exhibitions up for the Spring, ” niigaanikwewag” which means “leader women” or “they who lead ahead/ in the future” in Anishinaabemowin. It refers to the female artists as leaders in Indigenous Arts. The theme embodies the fact that  Indigenous women have always been present, nurturing art, culture, family, and community and that they are tied to one another and the earth.  There is beautiful (and haunting) work by Joi T. Arcand, Shuvinai Ashoona, Catherine Blackburn, Aylan Couchie, Ruth Cuthand, Thirza Cuthand, Dayna Danger, Raven Davis, Bonnie Devine, Maria Hupfield, Nadya Kwandibens, Amy Malbeuf, Jane Ash Poitras, Ningiukulu Teevee, and Arielle Twist. We were lucky to attend the Opening and witness a powerful and heart-wrenching performance by Raven Davis. It was a much-needed reminder of the past cruelties endured and more sadly the fact that even today countless Indigenous Sisters are missing and still being abused. I can’t put into words what a tragedy this is or how beautifully this artist portrayed that tragedy. You just had to be there. I will post about the second exhibition in another post as niigaanikwewag needs its own special place. It is a must-see exhibition,  and you can still catch the Curator’s Tour on Saturday, April 6 at 1 PM. Don’t miss it, the exhibition is up till June 16, 2019.

For more information: Facebook Event Page

 

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Exhibiting at Queen’s Park Legislative Building

 

October is Islamic Heritage month and I was really honored (and just a bit over the moon!) when I got a call from Ontario NDP leader Andrea Horwath’s office to exhibit my work at a reception they were hosting at the Legislative Building. Would I like to share my art at the Reception? Um…yeah!! My Rumi inspired pieces were the perfect fit and they were all ready to go. I am also happy to say that they have since been sold and have a loving new home.

The evening was great, the reception was well organized, met plenty of old friends, made some new ones and got to chat with Ms. Horwath (bonus!), she also gave an inspiring little speech.  There was also a delicious dinner (what can be better than good food?!) An evening of art, friends, good food and meaningful conversations, yes it was a perfect night!

 

 

Art Battle

Just participated in my fourth Art Battle, this time in Toronto at the Great Hall. It is 100% pure excitement just to watch and even more so to participate. I have been lucky so far to always reach the final round, keep your fingers crossed that I win it sometime soon!

Have to thank the Art Battle team (and founders) for providing artists with such a great opportunity to push ourselves to higher levels, share our work (and yes even sell!!) as well as get some great exposure. If you haven’t attended a battle yet check out their Facebook page or Website to find an event near you, you will not regret it!

 

Boxes and Banners by Mississauga Arts Council

I have always admired the street art that adorns Toronto so I was overjoyed when the Mississauga Arts Council started their Boxes and Banners Project to beautify (artify!) Mississauga streets. I am humbled to be one of the lucky artists who painted a Bell box.

Here is my box’s transformation!

It was unveiled amidst a bit of fanfare with the Mississauga Arts Council and some of its board members, the local Councillor and singer Arlene Paculan to serenade us. There was ice cream for everyone who attended the unveiling, and yes it was one hot day!

Art Exhibit

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So I got this in the first week of January. A really nice way to start the year! You can see my piece here : All Women Art Exhibition

In between the art nights that I am doing I hope to put in some more time for exhibitions. Had an art night yesterday, and the paintings all turned out awesome ( so proud of my participants! You all did an incredible job!) Check out the paintings…

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CN Tower and a summer sunset.

Sketchbook

I have been trying to keep up with my sketch book along with the paint nights, mornings and afternoons. Yes I did a paint breakfast as well as the paint lunches and dinners!

My participants have given me motivating feedback, and I am happy that painting has proven to be such a fun and  at the same time stress relieving activity for them as well as for me. I am having one last event on the 30th of December. I hadn’t planned on doing any more before January 2016, but there were so many requests for one last “hurrah” before next year 🙂

With all the planning, painting and other stuff  that goes into organizing these paint events I have less time to practice in my sketchbook. But I choose simple little drawings that I can manage while watching Dr.Who with my girls. So here’s a peek at my sketchbook…

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and this last one I started yesterday ….

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I hope to finish this one tonight. I also have some paintings I am working on for a silent auction for charity…busy !!!

SL-Week 15: Communication

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Solitude, best time for communication with As-Samad, the Eternally Besought.

 

I am all wrapped up in artsy events these days and can’t find the time to write on my blog. So I thought this photo challenge might be fun! Do check out this website, Silvain Landry,  for awesome photos!

Let’s Paint This!

After the art exhibit at MuslimFest this summer, I had all sorts of artsy ideas bouncing around my head. So I decided to bring some art to my community. It turns out painting is a great way to unwind!

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Sunsets.

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Food!

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Artsy ladies.

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I painted one in the morning and then one in the evening as I instructed.

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Le finished masterpieces!

It turned out well for the first time, we had lots of fun. I would love your suggestions and tips to make it better though!

Autumn is Sneaking In

School opening again sort of means summer is over, even though it’s not and the weather is still awesome and there may be some more beach days. However the trees are being sneakily “Autumnized” with brilliantly painted leaves. School opening definitely means more time to write though and more time to “art”. I was up to some artsy stuff when I got the chance, kids joined in and we made some masterpieces together. I am trying out the photo real stuff, need lots of practice, but I love it.

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Did this scenery for someone.

Practised plenty in the sketchbook too…

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Would you like a jelly bean?

Dollar Shop Masterpieces

Winter Vacation is coming up and if you have tyrannical offspring under the age of twelve you know that means countless whining sessions of “I’m bored” and even “come and play with me”, “color/draw with me”, “cut and paste with me” in general just “do something with me!” And you probably won’t have time to stop and take a breath with all the cleaning and cooking the holiday season brings. That and the stress of trying to be super woman and not breaking a sweat in front of the in-laws or your other “competitive company” i.e. the women with the perfect manicures, well-behaved children, spotless picture perfect homes and designer clothes who serve up gourmet delicacies they cook themselves. We should actually be thankful for their questionable existence, if it weren’t for them how many of us would actually try to workout once in a while and change out of those baggy plaid PJs?

A trip to the dollar shop can turn up some real treasures, yes and also cheap “use today, break tomorrow, dump in recycling on Wednesday” items imported from China. So you have to be careful. If you go in the aisle that has all that artsy stuff you will be amazed how many things you can find that will actually keep your kids busy for at least fifteen and if you are lucky sometimes a little longer.

Cutout pieces of colored paper, glittery fomic sheets in bright shades, sequins, beads, glitter glue, pom-poms and feathers are great for making cards, murals and other holiday themed decorations. Kids love decorating boxes and empty jars that you can use to give gifts in or candy in. You can make an outline of Santa, candy canes, reindeer or whatever else and have them decorate it as they like or even use old coloring book pages if you aren’t that great at drawing. If you have older kids threaten to take away their Xbox controller or with hold shopping money till they draw an outline of a big fat snowman on a sheet of chart paper for their siblings.

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Twin 1 and 2 made these, all this stuff came from the dollar shop.

Empty jars and odd left over pieces from tea sets or serving sets can be made into very pretty center pieces for the coffee table. You could also get stuff from the Thrift store. The pine cones, dried flowers and shiny little pebbles that you find in boxes under the kids’ beds are great to use for these. You can even find elegant (and cheap) glass candle holders to use at the dollar shop.

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We made this one ourselves. I got the tray from a thrift shop, pebbles we collected from the beach and you can find little candle holders at the dollar shop (you can tell this is my favorite place.)

Don’t forget to bake some extra cookies to use as a bribe to get them all to clean up their mess. And if that doesn’t work then you can always remind them of the gifts they won’t be getting, that often helps in convincing them to cooperate.