Digitally alterned archival image of Alex Colville's mural Athletes, 1961, showing the artist looking at the work

Fairy Tails

10 January to 1 April 2020
Vernissage: 17 January @ 7:00 pm

Works by Amalie Atkins, Aganetha Dyck, Diana Thorneycroft, Meryl McMaster, Sylvia Ptak, Vicky Sabourin, Anna Torma, Laura Vickerson, Janice Wright Cheney

Curated by Anne Koval

This group exhibition explores the wondrous in nature by reconsidering the role of animals in storytelling. These works present fantastical narratives in which animals preside over strange episodes: tales are rewritten or unwritten, travellers embark on uncertain journeys, danger lurks deep in the forest, a witch appears from nowhere, birds and beasts are spellbound, clothing is enchanted, and a shoe materializes, as if magically spun from gold. If animals are “good to think with,” as anthropologist Claude Lévi-Strauss once famously remarked, then folk and fairy tales have a long history of speaking through beasts, whose otherworldly transformations can express our innate or unconscious longings and desires.

Image: Diana Thorneycroft, Herd-girl (gardener and keeper of memory), 2015, digital photograph, courtesy of the artist

Digitally alterned archival image of Alex Colville's mural Athletes, 1961, with blue and green accents

Opening Exercises

17 January to 1 April 2020
Vernissage: 17 January @7:00 pm

Curated by Emily Falvey

A project by Didier Morelli, featuring contributions from Eunice Bélidor and Camille Georgeson-Usher

Art and sports are often considered so separate as to be almost opposed. In fact, they may easily complement each other in the creation of shared communities and spaces. In Opening Exercises, artist Didier Morelli sets out to explore this very connection. Using Alex Colville’s mural, Athletes (1961), as a point of departure, the artist mines material from the Mount Allison University Archives, combining it with his own work and written contributions from curators Eunice Bélidor and Camille Georgeson-Usher, both of whom have relationships to distance running. The resultant installation proposes “a series of starting points moving out in various other directions,” and thus emphasizes unexpected connections and moments of collaboration as well as divergence.

Image: Didier Morelli, 1.52 x 2.42 meters, 2019, digital intervention into a photograph of Alex Colville and his mural Athletes (1961). Courtesy of the artist.

Photograph by Goerge Zimbel of three girls laying on the beach.


11 January to 1 April 2020

online now

Periodically a friend of the Owens is invited to select a work or two, or sometimes three from the Owens' collection. These community members, students, staff and faculty share their own perspectives and connections to works that they pick and to the collection overall.

The Owens Art Gallery's collection began with an initial group of 300 predominantly European paintings, prints and drawings acquired in 1885 as a teaching collection for art students to study and copy. The collection has now grown to over 3000 works of art including paintings, photographs, prints, sculpture and multi-media work by established Canadian and International Artists.

This exhibition is part of an ongoing series of community curated exhibitions. Follow the series online now.

Image: Charles Comfort, Canadian Geese Over Lake Huron, oil on wood panel. Gift of James A. Gairdner

Image of homepage of the Virtual Companion

A Virtual Companion to All Things Useful and Artistic: Applied Arts at Mount Allison University 1906-1960

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This Virtual Companion accompanies the exhibition All Things Useful and Artistic: Applied Arts at Mount Allison University 1906-1960. Serving as a legacy for the exhibition, this website provides in-depth features on selected objects, behind-the-scenes documentation of the exhibition installation, video footage of conservation treatments, archival photographs and oral histories from graduates of the Applied Arts program.

The Virtual Companion is made possible through funding from the Sheila Hugh MacKay Foundation.

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