Submitted by Manju Sah
Note: This tour has been moved to June 5-6 due to provincial COVID-19 restrictions.
The year 2020, and now 2021, will be embedded in our memories as a period where life took many unexpected turns, and where we were asked to step up and protect each other and our most vulnerable populations. Despite unprecedented restrictions on our normal lives, the artists of the West End Studio Tour (WEST) have found continuing strength in their art and in the community.
After many months without exhibition opportunities, our local WEST artists decided they could not wait until the fall to share their art with you!
WEST is pleased to add an open-air spring 2021 Tour to its quarter-century tradition of fall tours. This special one-time spring tour will take place on the weekend of June 5-6, 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. Artists will display their work outdoors, in their yards and on their porches – strictly following the guidelines for physical distancing and access recommended by Ottawa Public Health. In the event the stay-at-home restrictions are extended till the end of May, the tour will take place the weekend of June 5-6.
A downloadable and printable map of the studio locations are now available on the WEST website (westendstudiotour.ca), or tear out the map printed in this issue of Kitchissippi Times (page 3).
Manju Sah – Painting through a pandemic
“This has been an emotional time for everyone – full of thought, reflection and adjustment. For over 25 years, I’ve been painting more realistically the beauty of nature, entranced by the play of light and dark, and the magic of colour in flowers and landscapes around me.
Somehow, the pandemic put a different lens on what I saw around me — everything was still there, but somehow appeared ethereal and delicate. I still wanted to paint nature, but found myself pursuing a style that leaned more towards that sense of abstract and ephemeral that I felt about my surroundings.”
Manju has been painting for over 25 years and can be visited at stop #10 on the tour: 483 Brennan Ave.
Pamela Stewart – Emotional abstracts in an uncertain time
A gestural, experimental abstract artist, Pam aka PaminOttawa, paints how she feels. Her recent body of work – while using modern and emerging art materials such as art resin, alcohol inks and synthetic paper – is a call to dive into nature.
“No matter how my paintings began during this pandemic, they evolved and emerged as ‘Emotional Landscapes.’ While still abstract [in] their form; the texture and movement of my recent works are all evocative of lush forest, or undulating water… they have a sense of cleansing, a Zen energy, an escape, perhaps, and a yearning to get outside and away from it all.”
Pam is a guest artist on the tour and this will be her third year as a “WESTIE.” You can find her at stop #4: 276 Atlantis Ave.
Maciek Peter Kozlowski – Running with Scissors
It’s been a year since the initial COVID-19 lockdown. And we are now in another lockdown again. And while there have been very limited opportunities to show and see art in Ottawa and two venues where Maciek showed his art sadly had to close, Maciek says the pandemic has nevertheless been productive.
“I have four new series, each exploring a different creative direction, with about eight pieces in each. One is even called the ‘Pandemic Series: Running with Scissors’ and features abstract pieces with a more emotional response to the pandemic with titles like ‘The Year 2020’ and ‘Social Distancing.’
My art is about the Joy a person gets when they really like one of my pieces. For me that is what it’s all about. Looking forward to a safe WEST spring tour and to bring some Joy to art lovers.”
Maciek has been creating art most of his life and has been exhibiting for the past 10 years. You will find Maciek at location #1 on the map: 100 Pooler Ave.
Paula Mitas Zoubek – Wonder in what lies ahead
“Experience is an arch wherethrough gleams that untravelled world whose margin fades forever and forever when I move.” – Tennyson
Paula Mitas Zoubek has been with WEST since the 1990s. She paints with women in mind, painting their experiences and things dear and near to most women… their loved possessions; their homes; and flowers, which of course have always been symbols of femininity.
Her recent series of small works is called “Gems.” They are rather dense in design and enhanced with glowing metallics. Paula paints at home and feels “lucky to have a long driveway and garage where she can show her art safely in these COVID[-19] times.”
Paula is #6 on the map and her stop is at 193 Daniel Ave.
The WEST Spring 2021 tour is free to attend and organized by the following local fine artists: Tracy Armstrong, Richard Bond, Lenka Cutler, Margaret Chwialkowska, Deidre Hierlihy, David W. Jones, Maciek Peter Kozlowski, Paula Mitas Zoubek, Janie Park, Manju Sah, Pamela Stewart and Venz Vesselinov.
For more information, please contact Manju Sah or Pamela Stewart.
Manju Sah: firstname.lastname@example.org or 613-722-0202
Pamela Stewart: email@example.com or 613-852-7263