Exploring the New Brunswick Art Bank, no. 1: The Curators

Beaverbrook Art GalleryJanuary 22, 20190 Comments

In early 2018, the Government of New Brunswick announced funding for a very special project: three emerging curators would work with our team on a project commemorating the 50th anniversary of the NB Art Bank.

Since then, the three curators, Emma Hassencahl-Perley, Emilie Grace Lavoie, and Erin Goodine have been working with the Gallery’s Manager of Collections and Exhibitions John Leroux, learning about and exploring curatorial practice, travelling around the province, researching the New Brunswick Art Bank, and co-curating a new exhibition set to open at the Beaverbrook Art Gallery in February.

Ahead of this new exhibition, we sat down with this dynamic team to learn more about this process, as well as each of the three emerging curators. In this first post, we’ll hear a bit from each of them about where they came from, and how they got involved in the arts; and in future posts we’ll hear about the process and experience so far with the New Brunswick Art Bank exhibition.

Emilie: My name is Emilie Grace Lavoie, I was born and raised in Edmundston, NB. I grew up in a pretty open-minded environment. My sister and I were playing music at a young age. With our music classes, we would go see local opera shows and theatre. I spent my time after school observing, drawing, and asking lots of questions about my dad’s job in his neon shop. I also saw my mom sewing clothes for myself and my sister – I sewed a lot, and thought about being a fashion designer. In the end, working in the fashion industry wasn’t what I imagined, so a few years later I decided to enroll in art school.

In 2011, I graduated from LaSalle College in Montreal with a diploma in Fashion Design; I received a Bachelor in Visual Arts in 2016 from Université de Moncton, and recently obtained my Master of Fine Arts in May 2018 from Emily Carr University of Art and Design in Vancouver.

As an artist now, I work mainly with ceramic as a sculpture medium. My work combine ceramics and textiles to establish a dialogue between fragility and materiality, in order to interrogate the space between an object and its ecology; the relationship between material practice and complex systems, such as living ecosystems, and the environments in which they are situated.

Emma: Kwey, my name is Emma Hassencahl-Perley. I am Wolastoqiyik (Maliseet) and I am from Tobique First Nation, NB. Art has always been a huge part of my life, especially in my final year of high school. When the time came to apply for post-secondary education, I almost went to study law. Thankfully, my parents and art teacher encouraged me to go and do what I love first, then return to the idea of law if I wished. I applied to the Fine Arts program at Mount Allison University, was accepted, and haven’t looked back – I graduated with a Bachelor of Fine Arts in 2017.

Now I am based in Fredericton working as an emerging artist, emerging curator, and instructor at the New Brunswick College of Craft and Design. Living a creative life is what I am meant to do

Erin: My name is Erin Goodine, and I am an interdisciplinary artist and designer based in Fredericton. Growing up, I was always interested in art. My mother is an artist, and when I started to show an interest in it as well, she enrolled me in any art camps or after school classes she could find. I graduated from NBCCD in 2011, and have since worked as an in-house graphic designer. Outside of working full time as a designer, I’ve also continued an art practice through drawing, painting, installation, and most recently, improvisational electronic music with my friends Emily Kennedy and Indigo Poirier with our project Terre Wa. Over the years I’ve also stayed involved with a variety of local arts organizations like Connexion ARC and Flourish Festival, as well as participating with art board and selections committees.

Emma, Emilie, and Erin, have been working hard on the New Brunswick Art Bank project since joining the team at the Beaverbrook Art Gallery. The exhibition, Psi-kwek keti mewi Tout va bien aller Everything is gonna be fine Wela'sitew, na opens in February, and all are welcome to attend. Stay tuned as we learn more about the process of curating the exhibition and choosing specific works.

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