This article is from Niagara This Week, by Moosa Imran, Local Journalism Initiative Reporter
The Grimsby Public Art Gallery is providing artists space not just to showcase, but to create as well.
Named AiR — an acronym for Artists in Residence — the latest exhibition at the gallery displays the work of two artists who were given residence, in the form of a studio, to work out of during the pandemic.
Laura Wohlgemut was one of two artists given studio space in Woolverton, starting last October. Her stay is wrapping up at the end of the month, with organizers hoping to find new artists to take up residency later this year.
Wohlgemut described the opportunity as “both terrifying and exciting.”
Previously, Wohlgemut worked as an art therapist, using art as a tool to help clients process conflict. During the pandemic, she kept herself busy with various business ventures such as her B Creative Within workshops that promote creative thinking.
“I found that I had become more distant from my own artistic process. So when I was presented with the opportunity to explore my own painting I knew, now was the time,” she said.
For Wohlgemut, her artistic residency gave her time to explore various techniques, including photo transfers onto canvas, acrylic skin making and experimenting with various colours and paint application tools.
This is how she came to settle on a style she calls “intuitive abstract painting.” It’s a combination of various techniques she used as an art therapist to achieve a form of art that she said helps her push past her own preconceived notions and boundaries of what art can be.
“Trust the process, invest in the process, celebrate the process,” she said, reflecting on her time in residence.
Sandra Mercuri, education and media co-ordinator for the gallery, said the gallery wanted to pilot this program as a direct way to help advance emerging, re-emerging and mid-career artists to the next step of their career, by strengthening relationships to local cultural institutions.
Find the original article here on Niagara This Week