Showcasing truly unique artistic expressions that both mesmerize and inspire, ‘Everyday Wonderments: Works by Lily Corinne Anderton’ runs through to Dec. 22nd in the Kiwanis Gallery.
The ‘First Friday’ opening is set for Dec. 7th from 6 to 8 p.m. in the Gallery, which is located in the downtown branch of the Red Deer Public Library.
Local singer/songwriter Ross Stafford will be performing for Anderton’s opening with two sets – 6 to 6:45 p.m. and from 7 to 7:45 p.m.
Anderton will also be giving a short talk at 6:45 p.m.
“I’ve always been a ‘maker’, and I was encouraged to make things with my hands but as far as art, in our community there was one artist that I can remember. It was kind of beyond the pale,” she smiled, reflecting on her early years. “It wasn’t really part of my family or part of the curriculum. So when I say I was a ‘Johnny-come-lately’, I’m not kidding,” she added with a laugh.
A fascinating aspect to the works in the exhibit is that only the primary colours were utilized – blue, yellow and red.
From there, as Anderton pointed out, the possibilities are pretty much endless.
In her artist’s statement, she explained, “It would seem that an endless array of colours can be generated from just those simple three primary colours – and for me, this is an end unto itself.
“Then, there is the miracle of how the pigments interact with each other – some are downright dominant, pushing submissive others around. Look closely; you’ll see evidence of this everywhere in the paintings.”
Anderton is originally from Saskatchewan, and eventually settled in Red Deer with her family back in the 80s.
Although an interest in art was sparked years before that, she was busy raising her kids for several years so artistic pursuits were largely put on the backburner for a time.
“It wasn’t until I was in my late 20s that I undertook to study art.” She went on to study fine arts on the east coast.
“It was wonderful, but then I undertook to have a family.”
Eventually, she enrolled at Red Deer College for the visual arts program. “I thought, I’m just going to immerse myself in it,” she explained. “It has grabbed ahold of me big time,” she said, adding that she started out with drawing. “It turned out that drawing turned into a passion.”
Inspiration for focusing on the primaries also stemmed from the simplicity shown in the works of the late Agnes Martin.
“I just saw some of her work in Calgary recently and had stumbled on some of her work at the Museum of Modern Art in San Francisco earlier this spring – and it turns out this internationally-recognized artist whose work is so minimal it makes my quietest work look noisy, is from rural Saskatchewan.”
Anderton, who hails originally from Saskatchewan, felt affirmed in her own artistic direction from learning of that connection.
Meanwhile, she doesn’t see utilizing just three colours as constricting. It’s quite the opposite.
“Red, blue and yellow are everyday colours – the primary colours are everyday things,” she explained. “And yet, when you start putting them together with greater or lesser amounts of water, they start getting even more interesting,” she said.
“I do feel like I’m the vehicle,” she said, adding that often she feels like she just shows up with her brushes and paints and the magic starts to happen.
Meanwhile, she’s always intent on broadening her own artistic horizons, and to that end continues to take courses at Red Deer College.
“If they let me keep coming back, I’m coming back,” she added with a laugh. “They provide such a supportive environment not to mention a creative environment in the studio where I can spread out and make a mess! I’ve got young students all around me who are all going in a million directions creatively.
“It’s a stimulating environment, and the instructors are second to none.”
For Anderton, seeing the exhibit up and ready to be explored by friends and neighbours is a dream.
“When they are all up like this, I see them in a way that I don’t see them when I’m painting them. I’m seeing two or three different styles, maybe four, and I’m seeing where I am going next,” she said.
“And every time I come down here, I’m seeing something new which is really cool.”
As mentioned, Anderton’s show runs through to Dec. 22nd.
“There is something different that appears to each person, that doesn’t necessarily appear to me. It’s really subjective which is a terrific blessing.”