Submitted by: Sherry Luther, SCC Executive Director

“A Night with Saskatchewan” was held in Los Angeles on December 12 2013.  The Saskatchewan Craft Council had been presented with the opportunity to showcase  Saskatchewan Fine Craft at the residence of the Canadian Consulate General in Los Angeles (Hollywood). This initiative was spearheaded by SaskMusic; also attending were Sask Publishers, SaskArt (formerly SPAGA), SMPIA (SK Motion Picture Industry Assoc) and SIMA (SK Interactive Media Assoc) .

The SCC jumped at the opportunity to do join in on this project. It was thought that this would be a good opportunity to represent SK Fine Craft as a whole and to possibly make connections with US galleries to tour Dimensions and art dealers for representation.

With very short notice the SCC put together a small exhibition of 9 pieces of exceptional, unique and distinctive Fine Craft to take to LA for this one day event. By using images of work shown in the Affinity Gallery and content on the SCC Membership Directory, the SCC staff had invited 20 juried members to submit work to be considered; from the replies received the following works had been selected, packed and shipped off to Los Angeles.

Lee Brady, glass, “Moonlight Perch”

Michael Hosaluk, wood, “Bowl of Strange Fruit”
June Jacobs, fiber, “Gems of the Salt Flats”
Daryl Richardson, metal, “Dimpled Copper Bowl”
James Korpan, metal,” Windswept”
Rod and Denyse Simair, clay “Ondas Christalina Floridas”
Dale Lowe, wood, “Maple Burl Vase”
Paula Cooley, clay, “Smoked Quartetto
Megan Hazel, white gold and silver jewellery,  “Surrounding Necklace”

The SCC designed business cards of the participants with a full colour image of their piece and contact information, links to their websites and the SCC Membership Directory. A bundle of these business cards were included in the gift bags along with the SCC Playing Cards and brochure. Also included was a copy of the catalogue for Dimensions, our touring exhibition.  

The display pedestals and lights were sourced and rented in LA. The pedestals available were a departure from the plain wooden white ones that the SCC normally uses in that they were white plexi-glass with internal lights. 

These came in handy as even with the rented additional lighting the room remained dimly lit so the additional light from the pedestals helped to display the work. Bevin Bradley, SaskArt representative, and I worked together to set up the exhibition in the dining room and the end result was impressive.

As the guests arrived the natural flow of the home brought them into the exhibition space first after receiving their programs. I had several conversations with guests who enjoyed the work, had many questions and genuinely wanted to learn more about the Fine Craft artists we were representing. Comments were overheard about how they were surprised and delighted (enlightened?) that work of this caliber had come from Saskatchewan.

I had supplied 17 names of individuals who either owned or worked for galleries/museums that had an interest in Fine Craft to invite to this event. I gathered these names by polling all the provincial Craft Councils and the American Craft Council. During the evening I met Ray Leier, an art dealer, who was aware of and admired Michael Hosaluk’s work. He was also aware of the EMMA International Artists Collaboration that the SCC helps to organize. I spoke with Suzanne Isken, Executive Director of the Craft and Folk Art Museum, at the event and met with her at her office the next day. I had set up the appointment with her to specifically talk about the possibility of showing the SCC “Dimensions” exhibition in her space. She is a source of valuable information and I think she will be a useful contact for us.

The event as a whole went very well and ran smoothly. I appreciate the help, hard work and leadership from SaskMusic and look forward to future opportunities to showcase Saskatchewan Fine Craft. This initiative would not have been possible without the financial support from Creative Saskatchewan.