New SAAG Exhibitions explore community and country


 The Southern Alberta Art Gallery explores country and community with their four new exhibits, which opened, Feb.18.

 They run until April 24.


Emily Neufeld’s “Prairie Invasions: A Hymn is at SAAG until April 24. Photo by Richard Amery

“ All of these exhibits have a rural theme,” summarized interim curator Adam Whitford.


Emily Neufeld’s “ Prairie Invasions: A Hymn is in the main gallery.


 The North Vancouver based artist grew up on a farm near Red Deer.


“ It is about colonizers of Canada, when the government was giving away free land to get them to settle in the west,” Whitford said.


The exhibit includes  photography, sculpture and  360 light boxes of photography, reflecting the land, abandoned farmhouses, and what looks like reproductions of wallpaper on old rural houses and a wall made out of grass.


“We’re very proud to bring this exhibition to the SAAG,” Whitford said.


Neufeld will be speaking this afternoon, Saturday, Feb. 19 from 3-4 p.m about her exhibition.

Upstairs,  Vancouver born, Sunshine Coast artist Les Ramsay’s “ Excitation Station” takes a more lighthearted look at community through sculpture, needlepoint and embroidery.


 The exhibit features a variety of vividly coloured  items included painted driftwood which are inspired by decoy fish.

“ It is more cheeky  and humourous,” Whitford said.

“His painted driftwood is definitely a lot more fun and less serious,” Whitford continued.


Les Ramsay’s “Excitation Station” is at the SAAG until Feb. 24. Photo By Richard Amery

 Downstairs, in the library  gallery, retired University of Lethbridge Professor  Nicholas Wade, puts an artistic take on some of the gifts he has received over the years in his exhibition “Gifts.”


“ He’s received a lot of gifts from his students,” Whitford said.


 “It’s all a contribution to the community,” Wade said at the opening reception at SAAG, Feb. 28.


The Hallway gallery features “Cultivating Community:exploring  Youth Perspectives Through Rural Photographer.

 Youth from Taber’HSS took photos of a variety of images in their community.


The Gallery partnered with Family & Community Support Services’ youth initiative, Kaleidoscope Inclusive Youth Programming, and the Town of Taber - Arts, Culture, and Recreation Department. Through this initiative, youths aged 13 to 18 living in the Municipal District of Taber were invited to participate in a series of workshops focused on photography and gallery curation, with the opportunity to showcase their photos in an exhibition at the Gallery..

 The Exhibitions run until April 24.

 Artist Emily Neufeld will be speaking about her exhibition at 3 p.m., Feb. 19.

 — By Richard Amery, L.A. Beat Editor