Sept. 14, 2022
For Immediate Release
WATERLOO – A celebration of nature’s symbolic properties and people’s connections to Earth will be on display at Wilfrid Laurier University as part of the exhibition Take Only What You Need with Métis visual artist Christi Belcourt, running until Dec. 6.
The exhibition’s opening reception will be held at the Robert Langen Art Gallery, located in the Wilfrid Laurier University Library, Sept. 28 from 7 p.m. to 9 p.m. The event is open to the public.
With a display of vibrant colour and meticulous attention to detail, Belcourt’s work challenges her audience to acknowledge their dependency and responsibility to the survival of Mother Earth.
“My paintings are primarily calls to action,” said Belcourt, a Métis visual artist, designer, community organizer, environmentalist and social justice advocate. “They express my soul-love for Mother Earth and I see her and all living beings including humans as being one. Mother Earth is alive. The rivers and lakes hold all life. We humans are at the bottom, not the top, as we rely on every living thing to survive, and nothing relies on us. Except perhaps our domesticated pets.
“I call people to connect with the deep love they have for those places on Earth they feel most connected. I call people to connect and take action to protect the waters nearest to them. I call people to stand up for the coming generations.”
Renowned for her technique inspired by the beadwork patterns of Métis and First Nation women, Belcourt let her artistry transform into a lifetime study of plants, lands and waters, the environment, and a spiritual connection to other species and traditional medicines.
“Some of my large paintings can contain over 200,000 dots. The raised dots simulate beadwork. Their circular shapes represent the cycle of life, the parts that make up the whole, molecules and stars,” said Belcourt.
Suzanne Luke, curator of the Robert Langen Art Gallery, is excited to open the 2022-2023 academic year with Belcourt’s exhibition.
“Take Only What You Need reflects Belcourt’s active interest in nature’s symbolic properties and the earthly connections that intertwine human existence to the natural world,” said Luke. “I hope the citizens of Waterloo Region will take the opportunity to explore and experience the visual pleasure of these works.”
Belcourt is the recipient of numerous awards and honours, including the Governor General’s Innovation Award, and the Individual Artist Award for the Ontario Premier’s Awards for Excellence in the Arts (both 2016).
Take Only What You Need exhibit runs at the Robert Langen Art Gallery in the Laurier library until Dec. 6. The gallery’s hours are: Monday to Friday, 9 a.m. to 8 p.m.; Saturday and Sunday, 11 a.m. to 5 p.m.
Visitors are asked to adhere to the university’s COVID-19 requirements and policies. Masks are optional but are encouraged. Please do not attend if you are experiencing COVID-19 symptoms.
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