Pottery and an Archival Shore at the Mann Art Gallery

Tyler Clarke
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Thought provoking and beautiful -- the latest displays at the Mann Art Gallery provide an eclectic interpretation of artistry.


Those making their way through the gallery will face a display titled The Archival Shore first -- a selection of textured wall pieces by Rush Lake artist Gladys Wozny.

Drawing inspiration from nearby beaches, Wozny experiments with plaster and paint.

“She takes plaster casts of natural activity around the shores of Rush Lake, and then changes them in specific ways, so you see a lot of animal tracks, pieces of grass or leaves or natural detritus that become part of the work,” curator Griffith Aaron Baker said.

“She calls herself ‘part artist, part archivist’ … She’s showing us -- the viewer -- what’s around the lake, and then of course as an artist she takes liberties in changing things.”

Wozny’s underlying goal is to show the viewer the separation of civilization from nature, Baker explained, noting several instances where unnatural items or symbols appear in her works.

The Archival Shore will remain on display until Jan. 12.

The Mann Art Gallery’s main exhibit is currently Hanson and Ross Poetry: Pioneering Fine Craft on the Canadian Prairies.

Featuring the artwork of well-known potters Folmer Hansen and David Ross, the gallery floor is full of plates, cups, tea sets and other pieces of pottery meant to be functional.

“They’re considered widely as being the grandfathers of modern ceramics,” Baker said of the display, curated by Moose Jaw Museum and Art Gallery curator Heather Smith.

The two worked as a pair, with Hanson glazing and Ross painting.

Their work wasn’t “like today where you could get all kinds of mugs at Wal-Mart,” Baker explained. “Back then, production pottery was filling a need in the community.”

Lining the gallery’s walls are various stories about the artistic duo, including plenty of biographical information.

Although Ross is from the Prairies, Hansen is originally from Denmark. Deciding to travel overseas to pursue an artistic career, he found the embassy office to Australia, his intended country to emigrate to, was closed.

“Right next-door was the Canadian embassy, so he went to the Canadian embassy, and that’s how he came here,” Baker said with a laugh.

Ross and Hansen worked together from the 1950s until Ross died in a motor vehicle incident in 1974. 

The globe trotting display began its current tour in Japan before turning to Saskatchewan where it was set up in Yorkton and now Prince Albert before returning to Moose Jaw.

Hansen attended the opening of the exhibit’s Yorkton opening in September.

The Hanson and Ross Pottery display will remain up until Jan. 19.

The Mann Art Gallery is open from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Monday through Friday, and from 12 p.m. to 5 p.m. on Saturday and Sunday. 

Organizations: Canadian Prairies, Moose Jaw Museum, Wal-Mart Prince Albert Mann Art Gallery

Geographic location: Rush Lake, Yorkton, Denmark Australia Japan Saskatchewan Moose Jaw

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