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  • INK by Shawn Zheng

    Location: Saskatoon, SK

    Shu Cheng (Shawn) Zheng features his distinctive style of making marks in Chinese..
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  • North Shore Art Crawl

    Location: North Shore, BC

    The North Shore Art Crawl is a free community arts event March 7+8,..
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  • Art exhibit at local funeral home is proof art isn’t dead!

    Location: Alexandria, ON

    • Friday, 21 Feb 6--9: Wine & cheese, entertainment by recording artist Katie..
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  • New Craft Coalition: Call to Artists

    Location: Calgary, AB

    New Craft Coalition invites applications from all mid-career and professional artists to be..
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  • TRAVEL EXHIBITION

    Location: Toronto, ON

    John Mantha will be participating in a group show at Twist Gallery in..
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  • David Tycho: Urbania

    Location: Vancouver, BC

    Guest artist David Tycho will exhibit 10 paintings from his latest series. This series..
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  • ACAF (Accessible Art Fair) 2020

    Location: Brussels,

    ACAF (Accessible Art Fair) is back on October 15-18, 2020 for its 14th..
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  • Clarkson Society of Artists 2020 Show & Sale

    Location: Mississauga, ON

    The Clarkson Society of Artists invites you to attend their annual show &..
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  • Call for Artists: Urban Matrix

    Location: North Vancouver, BC

    North Van Arts is inviting artists to take part in an upcoming group..
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  • 9th Artist Spotlight Solo Art Competition

    Location: Palm Springs, CA

    Fusion Art is now accepting entries for the 9th Artist Spotlight Solo Art..
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  • Call for Art - 11th Annual

    Location: Palm Springs, CA

    Light Space & Time Online Art Gallery announces an art call for the..
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  • Call For Artists: The Other Art Fair Toronto

    Location: Toronto, ON

    The Other Art Fair are thrilled to present the newest edition of The..
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  • Poetic Notions

    Location: Montreal, QC

    Bringing together 30 artists and poets, curators & participants Holly Friesen and Carolyn..
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  • Call for Art - 4th Annual Colors Art Competition

    Location: Palm Springs, CA

    Fusion Art invites submissions for the 4th Annual Colors online art competition. For this..
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  • Marlene Kawalez and Corynn Kokolakis

    Location: Toronto, ON

    Presented by: Cedar Ridge Gallery. Part of the Cedar Ridge Gallery Contemporary Exhibition series. March..
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  • Jane Selbie and Joseph Farrugia

    Location: Toronto, ON

    Presented by: Cedar Ridge Gallery. Part of the Cedar Ridge Gallery Contemporary Exhibition series. February..
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  • Dianne Davis and the WAP Collective

    Location: Toronto, ON

    Presented by: Cedar Ridge Gallery. Part of the Cedar Ridge Gallery Contemporary Exhibition series. February..
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  • “Grey” International Call - Art & Literature Journal - Deadline February 28, 2020

    Location: Toronto, ON

    | Theme: Grey surrounds us, sometimes in surprising ways. In beach pebbles, a..
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  • on thin ice Polar Bear Art Exhibit

    Location: Toronto, ON

    On thin ice is a solo exhibit of polar bear portrait paintings by..
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  • Support the Worldwide Art Community | Participate in 6x6x2020

    Location: Rochester, ON

    Hello Artists in Canada, We want YOU to participate in 6x6x2020! Let your creative..
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  • Olivier Du Tre: New Works

    Location: CALGARY, AB

    January 7 to February 29, 2020 At HUB@302 302-1235 26 Ave SE, Calgary, AB..
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  • WAAH 124th Juried Exhibition at the Art Gallery of Hamilton

    Location: Hamilton, ON

    Who:  The Women’s Art Association of Hamilton (WAAH) at the Art Gallery of..
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  • The Indian Contemporary Art Competition

    Location: New York, NY, ON

    The Indian Contemporary Art Competition (ICAC) aims to discover and promote talented artists..
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  • The Loft On King Street

    Location: Toronto, ON

    The Loft On King Street is one of the most unique private event..
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  • Overzealous Fine Art Exhibition 2020 Call for Entry

    Location: Toronto (GTA), ON

    Submission Deadline: Sunday, March 1st, 2020 -- Exhibition Dates: March 30 – April 18,..
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  • VOYZX Exhibition of Contemporary Surrealism

    Location: Vancouver, BC

    VOYZX Exhibition of Contemporary Surrealism 2020 is an annual international art exhibition, dedicated..
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David Blackwood: A Survey

By Robert Amos February 9, 2004

} David Blackwood: A Survey By Robert Amos Winchester Gallery, 2260 Oak Bay Avenue (595-2777) until January 31, 2004 “Each thing that’s done in the present trails the glory of all that’s been created before... He approaches his art as if it were the ocean - endless, deep and infinitely variable. It is here that Blackwood has set his nets, and his nets come up filled with light and stories.” David Gough on David Blackwood David Blackwood is an artist I admire. I spent an hour with the mild-mannered, bespectacled artist and, though he is more than sixty years old, he glows with a youthful enthusiasm. A natural-born storyteller, Blackwood seems ever ready to launch out on a conversational tangent. As one of Canada’s most popular artists, Blackwood has found his Newfoundland heritage to be an inexhaustible mine of inspiration. Born in 1941 , he grew up in Wesleyville on the north east shore of The Rock. He is heir to generations of seafaring lore - his father and grandfather were captains of sailing ships, working the inshore fisheries and making annual voyages to the sealing grounds off Labrador. The tiny village in which he was raised was austere, Methodist, and deeply veined with customs obscure - and now obsolete. Blackwood left Wesleyville at the age of 17, and enrolled at Toronto’s Ontario College of Art. His narrative style, based on patient draughtsmanship, went against the grain of the prevailing art scene, but his talent and the rich heritage with which it was informed were recognized and encouraged. In the years since, his prolific output of etched memories has honoured the dark mysteries of Newfoundland’s ancient way of life. Long a resident of Port Hope on Lake Ontario’s shores, Blackwood is constantly in demand to show in galleries across the country, and the world. The breadth of this show, and the care with which it was selected, bespeaks his respect for Victoria and this gallery. He has brought his best. With a crisp line bitten into copper plates, Blackwood etches his island home in every detail - every fence picket, wharf piling, laundry line and flag pole. He respectfully presents the characters and costumes of people who were living legends to him. He imbues their activities with a haunting sense of the dangers of a seafaring life and the mysteries of life on this tiny cluster of homes on the ocean’s shore. Sombre in tone and obsessively descriptive, there is much love in this art - but nothing sentimental. Blackwood also brought to Victoria some large oils of Ephraim Kelloway’s door. During his childhood, the Kelloways lived beside the Blackwoods. “In our community of brightly painted white houses, “ he has written, “the Kelloway ‘place’ was known for its greyness. The weathered grey clapboard house... had not been painted in living memory. However, for several summers in the mid-fifties, Ephraim Kelloway painted his shed door - some say almost 50 times.” Blackwood, in 1990, took up this door as a subject, creating a series of life-sized paintings showing the door’s colourful evolution. They are at once pungently realistic and strikingly abstract. The International Signal Flags series is another major part of this show, a subject presented in pencil sketches, coloured monoprints and painted canvases. Master Mariner, 1994, etching, 50 x 40 cm (portrait of his father, Captain Edward Blackwood) for more pictures see www.winchestergalleriesltd.com The series was inspired by Blackwood’s father, Captain Edward Bishop Blackwood. “When I was ten years old,” the artist told me, “my father created a set of flags in the form of playing cards. He used the inside of Kellogg’s Corn Flakes boxes, cut them up and drew a flag on each. They were coloured with wax crayons. Newfoundland was becoming part of Canada and all the sea captains were going to have to write exams to obtain their master’s ‘ticket’. “Everybody was cursing that damn...” - here, the artist’s voice trailed off. Some of masters were sealers who had navigated the ice-filled and fog-bound waters of the Labrador Sea. But they couldn’t read or write and they couldn’t qualify. “They might have to go to sea as first mate,” he concluded with a short shake of his head. Captain Blackwood made signal flag cards to test himself, and young David was included. “It was hinted that I should learn the code, to be ready when the time came.” That time is past now, along with the cod fishery, the sailing ships and the signal flags. Nevertheless, the young artist learned his lesson. Knowing what we do of Blackwood’s more detailed work, the simplicity of these designs speaks volumes. The paintings represent the actual flag design; they act as formal colour field paintings; and they speak to us of vast, open seascapes. Every horizontal line becomes the ocean’s horizon; the space above is a shifting sky which mariners ceaselessly scan for clues of coming weather. While the centre of each painting is certainly a flag, the margins are rich with subtle clues of wind and water. The whole is bathed in an unearthly light which says “Newfoundland”. ___________________________________________ Copyright © 2002 Robert Amos Robert Amos is an artist and art writer who lives in Victoria, B. C.. He can be contacted by e-mail and you can view his paintings at www.robertamos.com