FUEL: works by Gary Blundell

at the Clarington Visual Arts Centre
May 27-June 24, 2012

This past Sunday I attended the opening reception for Gary's work at the Clarington Visual Arts Centre located in beautiful downtown Bowmanville, Ontario.  The gallery is housed in what appears to be an old mill located next to a wonderful babbling stream.   Upon entering the gallery space you are confronted by Gary's vibrantly patterned large scale works of geological strata and patterns developed by the passage of time on the landscapes around us.  The work is invigourating, complex and filled with color.  

In a small side room off of the main floor space Gary is presenting a new series of work dealing with the aging process in meat.  The works are smaller in scale but just as complex in detail as the larger works.  The palate is fresh and appealing.  I spent a lot of time in this room before heading upstairs to the third floor space.

Entering the third floor space was it's own religious experience.  The room itself is fantastic with large wooden pillars and beams exposed and in some places still showing the remnants of the hundreds of birds that at one point made this their home.  Here Gary has presented his latest works based on the mining industry in Northern England.  Gary received a Canada Council grant to travel to England last summer and to explore the remnants of a once thriving mining industry laid waste by the Thatcher government.  These works will be a travelling exhibition in England in 2014.  The patterns presented represent the visual experiences of miners deep beneath the earth's crust.  The works are dark and moving.  The attention to detail from the wonderful musical soundscape which accompanies the work transports you to another time and another place.

I encourage you to make the trip to Bowmanville and to the Visual Arts Centre.  If you are looking for a weekend destination I recommend a picnic lunch outside the gallery by the stream...idyllic.  The Clarington Visual Arts Centre is located at:

143 Simpson Avenue,
Bowmanville, ON

The gallery hours are:
Mon-Fri  10 am - 5 pm
Sat  Noon to 4 pm
Sun 1 pm to 4 pm

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