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Kootenay Gallery of Art announces first exhibits of 2024 season

Contributor
By Contributor
February 21st, 2024

The Kootenay Gallery of Art is pleased to announce the launch of its 2024 exhibit season with two shows by artists, Sylvie Roussel-Janssens and Gloria Mok.

MEND
Mend is the title for Sylvie Roussel-Janssens’s exhibition project at the Kootenay Gallery in the West gallery. Ms. Roussel-Janssens’s sustainable art practice in sculpture melds embroidery and environmental concerns. In her recent work, she transferred her experience in textile work to plastic waste material. The plastic debris was gathered in the Fraser Valley during the pandemic. Ms. Roussel-Janssens says that “Stitching is healing. If we can make small gestures of repair, perhaps we can have the courage to fix our broken world.” Mend is a series of 28 embroidered recycled plastic circles. This number is a way for women to measure time. It symbolizes the phases of the moon and refers to the effect of plastic on the hormonal system.

“We are surrounded by plastic, and it affects our body and our mind.” Eco-anxiety is real, and Ms. Roussel-Janssens finds stitching to be healing and meditative. It is a good way to process emotions and thoughts as we face difficult decisions regarding adapting to climate change. All the pieces were made with discarded plastic objects, drilled and threaded with masonry twine.

As the the 18th century, Antoine Lavoisier said: “Nothing is lost, nothing is created, everything is transformed”.

LOST WORLD
Over the years Gloria Mok has collected natural history books with beautiful illustrations. During the process of moving, she re-acquainted herself with these well-observed illustrations of birds, insects, and plants by a number of illustrators from Europe to Asia. She also came across objects she collected in the past such as pieces of coral, shells, leaves damaged by insects, and other natural curiosities. Each object, even though they come from modest origins from walking along the beach or in the garden, are unique and original. Ms. Mok felt these diverse elements would create an art project that celebrates the beauty in nature. As she was admiring these illustrations and objects, she felt an acute sense of loss of our relationship with the natural world in contemporary society. The physical act of cutting out each flower, and bird somehow re-connected her to nature. The idea of using cigar boxes reminded her of the idea of treasure boxes… A world within a box, a lost world. Ms. Mok hopes this show will inspire everyone to appreciate our natural world, whether it is in our backyards, or in the wilderness.

All are warmly welcome to attend the Opening Reception for these two exhibits on Thursday, Feb. 22 from 5–7 p.m.
Gallery hours are from 10 a.m.–5 p.m., Tuesday through Saturday.

For more information contact the Gallery at 250.365.3337 or email kootenaygallery@telus.net.

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