October 1, 2016
This coming Wednesday (October 5) I will present a one-hour illustrated talk called 'Photography Is Not Art - Or So It Seems.' as part of the Dodge+Burn Series of Lectures for FlashFest 2016, Winnipeg's 3rd Annual Photography Festival. The lecture series will take place at Photo Central, 957 Portage Avenue in Winnipeg, Manitoba from 7-8 PM.
'Photography Is Not Art - Or So It Seems.' The PHOTOGRAPH has been around for a relatively short period of time – about 200 years – compared to the other art media like drawing, painting and sculpture. As the ‘new kid on the block’, photography however has often had to prove itself as a genuine art form and some genres more so than others. Why is that? I will take a look at this particularly seemingly Canadian phenomenon.
The complete series of lectures include:
October 5, 7-8pm – Mike Grandmaison, 'Photography Is Not Art'
October 12, 7-8pm – Leif Norman
Leif discusses an alternative humorous history of photography, starting from 200 years ago.
October 19, 7-8pm – Emma Bonnemaison & Rhayne Vermette
A discussion about the THE VOICE FROM POINT DOUGLAS: A COMMUNITY-LED PHOTO VOICE PROJECT and how this project creates a platform for women to discuss and create visual narratives around questions of safety, security and well-being in the North End.
October 26, 7-8pm – Photojournalist Panel Discussion
Leif Norman and several Manitoba photojournalists will discuss the current state of affairs of modern print media.
Lear more about Winnipeg's month-long photography festival from their website at flashfest.net
With the exception of the card on the top right, this is one of the first series of QuickChange Payphone cards which featured Manitoba Wildflowers. It was a beautiful series created by the Palmer Jarvis Ad Agency for MTS back in 1999. The QuickChange Payphone card featuring the Winnipeg skyline was used in another series. Today phone cards are generic and lack any creativity or sense of place.
A couple of weeks ago I was pleasantly surprised to see for the first time in my yard, a pileated woodpecker. A couple of days ago, as I was sitting on the front porch admiring spring coming into its own, I heard the unmistakable sound of a pileated woodpecker. This time, I had enough time to quietly sneak into the house and grab my 'wildlife' camera and capture a couple of images of the once threatened species as it foraged for insects in my tall Manitoba maple tree. Unfortunately, this does not bode well for my tree!
Some of my images of Leo Mol's exquisite sculptures were recently published in a Russian Art Magazine called Золотая палитра. If you are like me, you may not speak much Russian so I asked the author, Maria Lakman, to translate the title of the magazine; it is 'Golden Palette Art Magazine'.
There is a short series of events leading to my involvement with the above article which I would like to mention. Maria first introduced herself in December of 2012 following a telephone conversation I had with one of the daughters of the famous painter Nicholas de Grandmaison. After years of trying to connect, finally I was able to chat about this painter of 'indian portraits' who also carried the same name as me. I mentioned to his daughter that Nicholas has written a letter in 1954 to one of my relatives asking him whether he was related to our family. The letter was printed in a book called 'Sur les traces de nos ancetres - Jean-Baptiste Grand'Maison , ses descendants et le Drame acadien' (2003) by Dr. Reginald Grand'Maison. It is essentially a book about my Grandmaison family from the time my first Canadian descendant (Guy-Jean-Baptiste Guillot) landed in the Province of Quebec (likely in Ste-Anne-de-Beaupre) from France in the period between 1700-1712. Maria Lakman contacted me and asked whether she could read the letter as she was currently involved in writing a book in Russian about Nicholas de Grandmaison. I eventually received a copy of the book (2013) but, unfortunately, I can only 'look at the pictures'!
Maria contacted me again in 2014 and asked if she could meet me at the Leo Mol Sculpture Garden in Winnipeg as she was now writing an article about the sculptor. I had a very pleasant walkabout through the gardens with Maria and her husband and later I submitted a selection of images of the sculptures that I had created over the years. The above images were those selected for the article, along with other photos from other sources. Incidentally, if anyone is interested in reading a translation of the article, you can do so by clicking here. Should you like a challenge and wish to read the article in Russian, please contact me and I will forward you a pdf of the article. Interesting how one event can lead to another!
Spring has been a lingering affair this year with a greater than usual repetition of melting and freezing events. A few weeks ago, I meandered into the Seine River Forest and made a few images of ice that formed on pools and puddles at the edge of the trees as well as images of the melting ice on the Seine River itself. The late afternoon sun created a lovely contrast between warm and cool colors. Click on the main image to see the other images in the gallery.