News Local

Thirty Days in July on display

By Stephen Uhler, The Daily Observer

In 2005, artist Alfred G. Villeneuve created "Thirty Days in July," a visual account and homage to Algonquin Park. He spent the month of July camping and canoeing in the park covering more than 400km of waterways and trails. At the end of the 30 days, he had produced 34 paintings and a journal of the experience.This epic work is now on display in the lobby of the Deep River Town Hall, where it will remain until the spring.

In 2005, artist Alfred G. Villeneuve created "Thirty Days in July," a visual account and homage to Algonquin Park. He spent the month of July camping and canoeing in the park covering more than 400km of waterways and trails. At the end of the 30 days, he had produced 34 paintings and a journal of the experience.This epic work is now on display in the lobby of the Deep River Town Hall, where it will remain until the spring.

DEEP RIVER - A classic work has returned to the public eye.

In 2005, artist Alfred G. Villeneuve created "Thirty Days in July," a visual account and homage to Algonquin Park. He spent the month of July camping and canoeing in the park covering more than 400km of waterways and trails. At the end of the 30 days, he had produced 34 paintings and a journal of the experience.

This epic work is on display in the lobby of the Deep River Town Hall, where it will remain until the spring.

“For me, it is not good enough to replicate a scene, with a view to merely attract the viewer,” Villeneuve said. “I choose and commit a subject to canvas, based on its ability to convey a thought, or reflection, in relation to what I am experiencing, or have experienced in life – struggle, joy, love, outrage or peace.”

The Deep River Gallery Committee approached the artist to display his work at the Deep River Town Hall. The exhibit was opened Jan. 20 with a great fanfare, featuring the Algonquin drum group Broken Arrow and traditional dancing.

Villeneuve said this is the seventh time this work has been on display, and he is pleased he was invited to do so.

“I thought this would be an extensive place to show it,” he said, explaining he feels Thirty Days in July, as well as the celebrations at the Deep River Town Hall; speaks to the history and culture of the area.

“Having Trevor Pierce and Broken Arrow here to open it was juts fantastic,” he said. “It was great, too, to get the community here, the dancers and drummers, out under one roof.”

Villeneuve was born in Barry's Bay and has lived in and explored the area all his life. He has been inspired by his personal cultural relationship with the wilderness of Algonquin Park, a combination of indigenous and settler influences that he calls "Algonkin Mosaic."

Sensing a kinship with painters as diverse as Alex Colville, Jean Paul Riopelle, Emily Carr, David Milne and Norval Morriseau, all of whom recognized for their strong sense of form and colour, he explores the aesthetic of the Boreal Forest and Precambrian Shield with an intensely personal interpretation.

All 34 paintings and Villeneuve’s journal will be on display until the spring. Deep River Town Hall is open 8:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday to Friday.

SUHler@postmedia.com 



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