The Edmonton Art Club (EAC) was established in 1921 and is the oldest continuing art organization in Alberta. Imagine the passion of those first 14 members, guiding the club in helping to lay the foundation for the development of visual arts in our province while building a club that remains strong and growing nearly 100 years later.
In 1923, the art section of the local Council of Women approached the Edmonton Art Club with a plan to develop a permanent collection of art for the city. Through their cooperative efforts and the Art Association, the Edmonton Museum of Art (renamed the Edmonton Art Gallery in 1956) was founded. Our contribution was recognized in the development of the Art Gallery of Alberta (AGA). The EAC contributed one of the first paintings to the AGA, a work by Alban Cartmell entitled 'Prairie Trails'. Both the AGA and the Alberta Foundation for the Arts house work by former members in their permanent collections, including work by (to name a few) Dr. Harry E. Bulyea, Robert Campbell, Margaret Chappelle, Alice Daley, Meredith Evans, Len Gibbs, Robert Guest, Robert Wesley Hedley, Percy H. Henson, Murray MacDonald, Vivian Thierfelder and George Weber.
I remember going to EAC shows in malls, and particularly loving the beautiful paintings of flowers. I dreamed of becoming a member, but never thought it would happen. I was accepted in 2010, and have thrived as a painter since then. Through the years, Edmonton Art Club shows have been building blocks for the dreams of countless amateur and beginning painters, supporting the vision of the club to "encourage artistic achievement and an appreciation of the visual arts".
The EAC now includes approximately 50 members, skilled in mixed media application, painting in acrylic, oil and watercolour, drawing/sketching, wood burning, printmaking and sculpture. We meet in the Orange Hub monthly, with critiques being an important part of each meeting. We hire a local professional artist to provide feedback on the work each member presents, and in that way move both our individual work and our knowledge forward.
We are holding our first show Orange Hub show on April 28 and 29. We are open to new members and welcome partnerships with other arts organizations.
More information about our organization and membership can be found at http://www.edmontonartclub.com/.
In May 2015 & 2016, myself and a handful of artists/organizers who had links to the Mill Woods area put together an artistic showcase called Masala Mix: a Blend of Spices to this mall. We were able to connect with local teachers and showcase work by students from neighbouring schools Edith Rogers and J. Percy Page; showcase diverse artists who live/lived in Mill Woods from a wide range of disciplines, host mini-workshops, and even incorporated a heritage component by inviting Mill Woods Mythologies to share stories. We also invited by agencies that do work in the area (Welcome Centre for Immigrants, EISA) to table and share more info about their organizations. The mall plaza is designed to be a community hub yet remains quite underutilized by artists. There is a thriving community of Indigenous, immigrants and other cultural minorities in the area who may not have the same access to the arts due to most art activities taking place at the centre - it would be great to see local Mill Woods artists build their capacity and share their skills, knowledge, and art within their own local communities.
Established in 1921 with fourteen Charter Members, the EAC is the oldest continuing art organization in Alberta. It has been instrumental in helping to lay the foundation for the development of the visual arts in our province. Their vision was to develop the visual arts in the City of Edmonton in three ways:
1) to encourage a wider appreciation of fine arts in the community;
2) to improve the quality of local art; and
3) to encourage individual artists through constructive criticism and exhibitions"
The relationship between the EAC and the Art Gallery of Alberta is embedded in our history, with the EAC being active partners in the establishment of the Edmonton Museum of Art in 1924, renamed the Edmonton Art Gallery in 1956. The Edmonton Art Club contributed one of the first paintings, a work by Alban Cartmell entitled ‘Prairie Trails’, to the Museum’s permanent collection and continued to support the Museum by donating works of art and by contributing funds and instructors for the Gallery’s art classes.
Permanent holdings of the EAC works of art are housed with the Alberta Foundation for the Arts ("AFA") and the Art Gallery of Alberta ("AGA").
The EAC features eclectic Visual Artist members who are disciplined in mixed media application, painting in acrylic, oil and watercolour, drawing/sketching, ceramic, clay, stone carving, wood carving and wood burning, printmaking and sculpture. Counted among its impressive alumni are, to name a few, Len Gibbs, Thelma Manarey, Meridith Evans, Jerry Heine, Ilda Lubane and Vivian Theirfelder.
The Club has an average of 50 members, each selected through a jury process, and is composed of people from all walks of life, all of whom share an appreciation of the visual arts and encourage artistic achievement.
In the boreal forest, rivers are often the only relief from dense trees or muskeg and here a niche was carved for dug-out canoes. Dug-outs were formed by chipping soaked or partially burned logs with stone axes. The final gouging was done with a clever tool borrowed from nature’s furry carpenters: beaver teeth. Early boat builders used chisels made of beaver incisors tied to wooden handles. With use, beaver tooth dentine is worn away, which exposes new sharp enamel ridges. The result is a self-sharpening chisel that was used by Cree and Dene across the boreal forest.
From the April/May, 2015 issue of Canada’s History Magazine.
Written by: Todd Kristensen (Archaeological Survey) and Mike Donnelly (Freelance Historian)
The area of the river valley and places along the river as seen in the picture is not far from where the first pre-contact northern Dene people travelled to and from to areas north up to the Yukon, some 3,000 km. We embrace that our paddle and on-the- river recreational activities are on Treaty 6 Lands as the First Nations people taught us all how to build and use the canoes and kayaks that were essential to travel, exploration and commerce. My own experience with the 25 ft Northern Voayageur Canoe was on a boat named Pathfinder that went across many rivers in Alberta, lakes and even oceans from Canadian cities across the prairies, the Canadian Shield and beyond borders. The canoe is an iconic symbol that we can all still enjoy as being able to share the river. Education programs and the Edmonton River Valley Conservation Coalition which bring awareness to the importance of the meeting place as a recreational site for the next generation and how we can anticipate a river that runs through our city, as our Mayor has coined this is a “River city rising”. The paddling community and Edmonton Paddling Centres Association EPCA those we include are the Ceyana Canoe Club, NorthWest Voyageurs Canoe and Kayak Club, Edmonton Whitewater Paddlers and others Riverwatch, Haskin Canoe, Canoeheads, EasyRider, Greater Edmonton Racing canoe and kayak club, Leduc Boat club, UAPS, EDBFA Edmonton Dragon Boat Festival Association, Friends of the river recreational association, EDBRC Edmonton Dragon Boat Racing club, City of Edmonton River Valley programs which provide us with a cultural experience and a safe enjoyable experience in and along our North Saskatchewan river.
I was enrolled in a University of Alberta Extension drawing class, and one evening I noticed an article posted in the hallway that offered artists the opportunity to study in Rome for two months. I knew I was going! My love of marble was calling. To my delight it was everywhere! In the fountains, in the museums, even forming the curb stones.
With a professor from the Classics department at the University of Rome as our guide, we were no longer tourists, but artists on a journey. I quickly learned to expect a delight of images when I turned each corner. Strong shadows and brilliant sunlight, patterns and texture, line and movement.
I saw people who lived and breathed art.
When I looked at art again once I got back – I simply felt, I could do it! Since then I’ve given the space to students to start their journey as well. Twelve years of giving back the inspiration that was given to me – here at home.