When an upcoming exhibition at Glenhyrst Gallery recently had to be postponed, the staff at Glenhyrst had to pull together something that they had been planning, a bit earlier than anticipated. What they had been envisioning was a show that featured stand out women artists in a time in history where the #metoo movement, and women’s issues were figuring prominently in our news and media. They had been making a list of people around them that inspired them, and noticed that 5 of the women on the list were Glenhyrst’s own instructors of workshops and classes. Together their works comprise the Power of Her exhibition that runs from September 29 until November 25, 2018.
The Power of Her opening, Thursday October 11. Photo: Dean Ellis
The show consists of works by Heather Vollans, Jeanette Obbink, Chelo Sebastian, Linda Blakney and me, Aliki Mikulich. I was thrilled to become a part of this dynamic group. We are very different in medium, style and approach and together we form a very interesting exhibit.
Main Gallery, Photo: Dean Ellis
Additionally, upstairs in the gallery there is an exhibit featuring works by women from the permanent collection. Ana Olson, Director of Glenhyrst, states that “historically, art work by women is not ‘as evolved’ as that by men. Women in the past did not indulge in creativity, nor attend art schools.” There is a stark difference between the works of present day women artists and those of the past. It is interesting to compare the past and present and see how we have evolved in expression and technique. Ana Olson doesn’t believe that women nowadays suffer any of the restrictions of the past, at least not in the art world. ” Women in the past had to be more competitive out of self preservation as there were limited opportunities for them to become engaged in the art world of the past” she notes that ‘upstairs you can see how angry some of the works were in response to that suppression and in overcompensation in order to become relevant – they had something to prove. Now we are not just angry – we are powerful – we have choices in what will be our path”. It is also fair to note that artists have a tough time no matter what their gender. Olson believes that in the art world “people ‘get it’ as they are a more liberal demographic that doesn’t discriminate between genders.”
Upstairs, permanent collection. Photo: Dean Ellis
There is also still opportunity to enroll in the some workshops that are offered with these artists as instructors including encaustic painting, watercolour, mosaics, and printmaking.