Thursday, November 26, 2009

"Mythic and mundane"; the Eastside crows

Post #2 on the 2009 Culture Crawl.

The header of the Culture Crawl website features crows. Crows carrying a red-tipped paintbrush perch above the doors of Crawl artists.

A logical choice. Crows are the predominant birds of the Strathcona area. No house, no alley, no post, no green spot is long without its black-clad company.

Strathcona crows, beginning of November

Richard Tetrault, whose studio fills the central part of the Paneficio*, paints crows. He writes,
"Crows activate the urban environment with a presence that is both mythic and mundane. Omnipresent in my part of the city, the crow has a tenacity, adaptability and social quality that demand both respect and space. I have given them a special place in my work, in particular, as communicators and symbols of survivors of displacement and urbanization."

One of Richard Tetrault's many crows. This one is above a door in the very back of his studio.

He does woodcuts, linocuts, murals, and more, in strong, fluid strokes, vibrant colours. My favourites, after the crows (Go see some!), are the urban landscapes. One we saw on this visit is an old house, supported by and supporting flights of rickety wooden steps, almost ladder-like. Clearly Strathcona.

And here's a corner of his studio:

Creativity thrives on a diet of order scrambled with chaos.

The crow, up close, guarding a pile of sketches and books.

*I missed him, two years ago, writing about the Paneficio. I don't know why; I saw and appreciated his work then, too.

1 comment:

  1. I love crows - there are some grey ravens that arrived near my house too.

    There was fantastic book about crows published in the UK two years ago. Crow Country by Mark Crocker - beautifully written, lyrical, informative, wonderful.

    Worth getting from Amazon.


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