Multimedia video showcasing this year’s finalists for the 2012 Lieutenant Governor of Nova Scotia Masterworks Arts Award
Creators: Susan Leblanc and Ann-Marie Kerr
Nominator: Nate Crawford
The Debacle premiered in Halifax in April 2011 and played in Toronto in December of that year as part of the Nightwood Theatre’s Groundswell Festival. It is a co-creation of actor and Zuppa Theatre Artistic Director, Susan Leblanc and director, Ann-Marie Kerr. The program website: Festival TransAmérique, Montréal describes it this way. “Prostrate and dishevelled, Margaret is surrounded by hundreds of Mason jars containing childhood secrets. She slowly opens them one by one, gradually letting go of the chaos that haunts her. Exhausted by grief, she clings to fragments of memories that evoke a family that has disappeared. She must go back in time, into the panic and terror of memory, and try to recall moments of lost innocence.
Jury comment: “The Debacle, strong theatrical vision masterfully realized.”
Creator: Dinuk Wijeratne
Nominator: Bernhard Gueller
The Tabla Concerto (2011) is the first full length Tabla Concerto for tabla and full Western classical Symphony Orchestra. The world premiere performance took place on February 9, 2012 at the Rebecca Cohn Auditorium in Halifax at a concert produced by Symphony Nova Scotia conducted by SNS Music Director, Bernhard Gueller and featured tabla soloist, Ed Hanley. It’s a fusion of Eastern and Western musical styles. Commisioned by Symphony Nova scotia and the Nova Scotia Department of Communities, Culture and Heritage it was composed in three distinct movements (1. Canons, Circles; 2. Folk Song “White in the moon the long road lies (that leads me from my love”; 3. Garland of Gems) that allowed each musical entity in the composer’s words “to preserve its own aesthetic”. It was recorded and received its broadcast premiere on CBC RADIO TWO on June 9. 2012.
Creator: Kim Morgan
Nominator: Jan Peacock
Range Light Borden-Carleton PEI 2010 breaks new ground by uniting Maritime imagery, history and change. A range light is one of a pair of beacons that align vertically when a ship keeps to a proper course. Its mate was destroyed years ago. The remaining structure, just east of the Confederation Bridge at Borden-Carleton, served as a model and a mold. As with light houses in Nova Scotia it has become obsolete. But it has been preserved in a virtual sense, by encasing it in liquid latex, a month long process that when removed produced a kind of three dimensional life size print of a moment in time and space. Illuminated from within, glowing like a giant sea creature it was exhibited at the Mount St. Vincent Art Gallery in October of 2010. On May 26, 2012, it opened at MASS MoCA, the largest contemporary art centre in the US at a continuing exhibition called Oh Canada.
Jury comments: “Range Light is monumental and magical.” “Range Light, past, present and future in an evocative new skin.” “The Range Light is a moving statement about the fragility of life. Breathtaking and mysterious.” ”Range Light is monumental and magical.”
Creator: Jonathan Otter
Nominator: Gary McCallum
J-Class Lounge Chair and Footstool is a fresh take on an ancient design. Based loosely on the arch back or continuous arm, Windsor chair, the artist encourages the art of relaxation by widening and lowering his lounge chair. All edges are soft and spindles are hand-shaped to fit the lumbar curve. The back`s graceful arc sweeps down to wide, supportive arms and the seat is deeply sculpted to cosset the sitter. The artist chose the highest quality raw material and brought them together in an artful manner. The back crest is laminated from thin slices of black walnut from a single plank with invisible glue lines. The addition of a footstool completes the ensemble, the result of an estimated 15,000 hours of labouring at a workbench.
Jury comments: “The Chair is masterful fusion of tradition and innovation.” “J-Class Chair and Footstool made one juror want to sit down with a beer…and think of his own masterwork.”
Creator: Sandra Brownlee
Nominator: Prof. Robin E. Muller
Departures and Returns is a handmade book that was the centrepiece of an exhibition of the same name at the Mary E. Black Gallery in the autumn of 2009. Each of the 30 deluxe, handmade editions contains an original weaving by the artist in an envelope like endpaper. The book itself contains a six page centre leaf, the width of six pages, containing a photograph of her strip weavings. Individual pages are reminiscent of a child’s interactive picture book containing pages stitched with black thread, both delicate and detailed, as well as prints and texts that reflect her life as an artist and a human being. The deluxe edition is wrapped in a woven cover with facsimiles of the artist’s notebooks. With Sans Serif Studio she co-produced an additional 100 catalogue copies making the work more widely available.
Jury comments: “The Deluxe Edition is an elegant and personal book full of challenges and insights.” “The exquisite craftsmanship of the book underlines the intimate artistic process but also provides the framework for the artworks included in it.”