By Jennifer Thorpe
Students from Little Falls Public School enjoyed a visit to The Station Gallery on Tuesday. Teacher Robin Rutherford brought twenty-three grade five students to view the latest exhibit and speak with artist Peter Rice. It was the first time many students had visited the Gallery. “Your visit here is so important to us,” said curator Cameron Porteous. “This is your gallery.”
The class prepared for their visit by viewing Peter’s pieces on his website and discussing important art influences like Tom Thomson and the Group of Seven, but, as Ms. Rutherford said, “It’s much nicer to see these works in person.”
Students were given a mini-assignment at the Gallery: evaluate six elements of art in the artworks and finish with a sketch of their favourite piece. Works featuring Terry Fox and Tom Thomson were of great interest; abstract pieces “The Messenger” and “The Art Of Discovery” were also favourites. Many were sorry to miss seeing Peter’s tribute to the late Gord Downie which is not part of the show.
In addition to speaking one-on-one with the artist, students also heard firsthand how he began to pursue his art while working as a teacher and how he continued developing it over time.
“There are so many different opportunities in art,” said Ms. Rutherford. “When you have a passion, try to make time to do it. If you discover a passion – it could be sewing, or photography, or hockey – please try to follow it because you never know where it will take you.”
Curator Cameron Porteous was very pleased to observe the students’ activity and interest. “My vision for this gallery is what Peter is doing today. It’s important to engage our youth – they’re the future of art.”
Following their visit at the Gallery, Peter will be visiting the class at Little Falls Public School on Thursday to lead a small exercise with copper foil and personalized glass etching.
Students were also invited to bring their families to the artist demonstration last Saturday, September 29th at The Station Gallery.
Rice’s exhibition runs until October 13th.