New exhibitions coming to McMillan Arts Centre this month

Artwork by Manley LaFoy. || Image submitted by Jennifer Bate, executive director of the MAC.
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Three new exhibitions by local artists are coming to the McMillan Arts Centre (MAC) this month. The work will be on display from Jan. 18 – Feb. 27.

Geoff Noble:  ALUMINOSITY

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Artwork by Geoff Noble. || Image submitted by Jennifer Bate, executive director of the MAC.

“The amount of aluminium in a soil or element” or in this case art.

I call this body of work a kinetic abstract of a vast land. It is a thought provoking look at the Canadian landscape using art, poetry, song, and spoken word, as well as sound and lighting effects. These different elements blend together to make one whole piece that is ALUMINOSITY. The art itself does not move, however the fading and blending of bespoke lighting and the movement of the viewer gives the work its kinetic appearance when looking at each piece from different angles. There are thousands of different cuts and textures in the metal pieces, and each one gives a unique splash of different colour as the viewer looks at and moves across each work. Bright colourful clothing will also help in the perceived movement of reflected light across each piece.

Most of the materials used in this project are re-cycled, although there are some canvases, aluminium pieces, lights, paints and wood that were bought specifically for this show. I have used different types of paint (brushed and sprayed), wood, canvases, metal, glue, coloured lighting, welding and various grinding and sanding techniques in order to achieve the final result.

The poetry on the plaques and walls is taken from the lyrics of some of my songs that are part of the multimedia performance of ‘A Northern Tapestry’, as are the songs, quotes and sound effects on the accompanying soundtrack. Visitors to ALUMINOSITY will be able to read these examples of poetry that are placed near the pertinent work of art.

There will be approximately 40 individual pieces of work in the show grouped into 21 works. Some are groups of two, some three, four and five, as well as single stand-alone pieces. These will be both wall art and free-standing pieces. Most will be a mix of paint, metal, board and canvass.

As well as being able to look at the art work, visitors to ALUMINOSITY will be able to take time to listen to the 30 minute soundscape of music, song, poetry and sounds of the Canadian landscape. This coupled with the spoken words and thoughts of some great Canadian authors, painters and poets helps tell some of the story of the Canadian Landscape as seen through the eyes of the artist.

– Geoff Noble (artist).

Manley LaFoy

Lafoy
Artwork by Manley LaFoy. || Image submitted by Jennifer Bate, executive director of the MAC.

Manley LaFoy grew up in Gray, Saskatchewan, studied architecture at the University of Manitoba and upon graduation practiced architecture for 30 years in Regina, before relocating to Parksville in 1993. He continued his practice and was an active participant in the community, volunteering his expertise on various boards and planning committees. He helped the town develop several of its public spaces, including the Parksville Community Centre and Knox United Church.

From the time he was a small boy, Manley demonstrated a talent for art which his parents encouraged. At age 14 his work at the Regina Exhibition School Display won praise and attention of Laura Lamont, a Regina artist. From 1951 through 1954 he studied under Lamont and attended the Banff School of Fine Arts Summer School in 1951. During university entrance classes at Regina College in 1954, he studied briefly under artists Art MacKay and Ken Lochhead.

Manley always had a passion for graphically recording his surroundings and casually pursued personal insights of Saskatchewan’s landscape during the period of 1963 to 1982, while practicing as an architect. Starting in 1983, Manley chose to more seriously focus his attention on painting and to record the vanishing urban scene.

During this period he worked mainly in watercolour, producing studies of the vast sky and landscape  of Saskatchewan, as he strove to record season and the context of the prairie’s scene. He came to be known as the “sky painter” and showed and sold works in local galleries. 

After moving to Vancouver Island, he turned his attention to acrylics and proceeded to interpret the seas, forests and landscapes of British Columbia. He became particularly enthusiastic about capturing the essence of the ocean and its many moods.

When on holiday he was never without a sketch book and brushes and brought back many images of Europe, the British Isles and frequent winter trips to the deserts of Palm Springs and Mexico. 

He never said no to someone in need of a poster or mural or signboard to move their cause along. He drew constantly, as evidenced by the many works on “mixed media” including cardboard, plywood, roll-up blinds and coroplast.

Years ago, before his first public showing, he wrote in his diary: 

“And so, a voyage commences — some effort and sense of recording for my delight — but seems that others like (appreciate) what my eye and mind sees. Of the prairie light, [its] mood, (its) live and magnificent sky — so full of a sense of beginning — expectant, nervous, as how I may react to failure — or Lord knows a modicum of success. And yet, this is not the test. The race is about fulfilling yourself — you strive to respond  to inner passions, inner truths that need restating in my little time, my little world — why not!”

His work is held in numerous print series, corporate offices, private homes and a provincial government collection. Manley died at age 81 in May 2019 in Parksville.

Dale Rumming

Exploring without boundaries, creating without limits 

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Artwork by Dale Rumming. || Image submitted by Jennifer Bate, executive director of the MAC.

It is exciting for me to create with a diverse range of media, to explore the limits of my creativity. I work with acrylics and alcohol ink for their dynamic colour possibilities. I build sculptures with clay, Paverpol (an environmentally friendly, water-based, textile hardener from the Netherlands) and found objects. I enjoy working outside the limits of paint and ink, clay and wire frames to turn the ordinary in intriguing sculptures. My goal is to explore without boundaries and create without limits. 

Biography 

I started right out of high school with commercial art. Later, I veered into my career in professional sales which carried me through nearly 20 years in real estate to my “retirement” in 2019.

For many years, my livelihood was sales; my passion was art. I never left my creativity behind. I’ve always found the time to create my artwork and I’ve enjoyed selling my work at craft fairs, markets and galleries. 

Through courses at Capilano College of “Advanced Sculptural Clay” and later pottery classes, I found I didn’t like making the same piece over and over so I turned to building one-of-a-kind thrown pieces; sculptures in clay. That’s when it started! Taking classes in different media allowed me to find what I needed – diversity. As I gained knowledge and experience, I realized I also wanted to teach, and I am now certified to instruct in both ceramics and Paverpol.

– Dale Rumming, artist

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