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«Barren Ground Caribou» by Joyce Wieland, 1978...

"Barren Ground Caribou" Joyce Wieland, 1978

There are some Canadian women artists whom I personally adore. Over the years they have proven to be an inspiration to me for my painting. These women are: Joanne Tod, Landon MacKenzie, Sandra Meigs, Gathie Falk, and to a lesser degree Mary Pratt and Emily Carr. However, when recently asked to give a presentation about art for Women’s Day, I decided on a different list of Canadian women artists to share. Granted I pulled one from my list of personal faves, but I think that’s allowed.

The list that I suggest everyone look up is: Joyce Wieland, Rebecca Belmore, Lisa Steele, Anne Savage, Gathie Falk (yes she’s one of my faves), Betty Goodwin, Janet Cardiff, and Jin-me Yoon.

All of these women’s works are pertinent and intriguing, their lives and experiences are (or were) expressed in some way within their works. I would argue they are feminist artists, even when that’s not obvious. The examination of “Self” in a particular space or situation is linked to feminism and feminist art. These artists’ work speaks of the times they live (or lived) in, and it speaks about equality.

I used to think that it was enough to just be a woman artist that produces. I have begun to realise, however, that I need to know more about this society in order to understand my own questions, and quests.

I said it before, and I have to say it again: I recommend the book Women, Art, and Society by Whitney Chadwick.

Natasha Henderson, Montreal

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"Dolce". Oil on canvas. 14"x18". 2010. copyright Natasha Henderson.

Natasha Henderson is a painter who has resided in Montreal for almost four years. Originally from Comox, British Columbia, she graduated with her BFA from the Emily Carr University in Vancouver in 1998. Her work has been exhibited and collected across North America.

"Ghazal Four". Oil on canvas. 18"x24". 2009.

Her paintings delve into questions about artistic representations of landscape. She uses the language and codes of other artistic forms, such as poetry and music, to examine representations of thought and meaningful patterns within her painting.

"Gathering". Oil on canvas. 20"x30". 2010. copyright Natasha Henderson.

Environmental concerns are touched on in her work, however, those concerns are not forefront. She combines an aching beauty, a seeking of light and meaning, along with the recognition that there is a cycle of life that sometimes just stops.

"Fracture". Oil on canvas. 30"x36". 2010. copyright Natasha Henderson.

In the future she plans to paint using home-made (free range) egg tempera paints and to eliminate toxic chemicals completely from her practice. See much more of her work at NatashaHenderson.com.

"Fermata". Oil on canvas. 48"x36". 2010. copyright Natasha Henderson.

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