Written by: Paige Mortensen, SCC juried Professional Craftsperson
As an artist I feel fortunate to belong to organizations like CARFAC and the Saskatchewan Craft Council which organize programs designed to support my artistic journey. I am grateful for the opportunities to connect with the arts community in a variety of ways. While the thought of inviting the CARFAC Mentor in Residence into my studio was scary, I am working on stepping out of my comfort zone so I decided to send in a submission.
The application process was simple: they wanted a letter saying what I hoped to get out of the visit and a few images to review. I sent these in and was pleased to be accepted to participate!
Peter Morin arrived at the scheduled time and immediately put me at ease by saying how an artist’s studio is their sacred, safe space and how he was honoured to have been invited into mine.
Peter was prepared: he had looked at my website and knew about my watercolour batik process. He commented on how he could tell that I am passionate about the work I do. He had some useful comments about my work and suggestions about ways of including more of the story in each piece. We also talked about different options for mounting or framing so that the viewer can experience more of the making of the piece. As he was talking, there were a couple of times that I didn’t quite get what he was saying. He noticed this and rephrased, so that I could understand his perspective and think about how that fits into what I am doing.
A couple of times, Peter said how he had just met me so he wasn’t sure how I would feel about what he was saying. He said I should take what felt right, and leave the rest.
All of that led me to be comfortable and allowed me to absorb the words being spoken, both for the information they expressed as well as for the perspective behind them. Two days later, I find myself thinking about two points that came up in our conversation:
- The first is remembering to take time to experiment and do things that will disrupt my typical way of working and spark new ideas;
- Second is taking time to research. If I want my work to tell a story, I need to figure out what that story is.
When this program comes up again next spring, I highly recommend you send in your application and participate. The experience will be beneficial!
CARFAC SASK 2018 Visiting Mentor: Peter Morin
Peter Morin is a Tahltan Nation artist, curator, and educator. In his artistic practice and curatorial work, Morin’s research investigates the impacts that occur between indigenous cultural-based practices and western settler colonialism. In addition to his object making and performance-based practice, Morin has curated exhibitions at the Museum of Anthropology, Western Front, Bill Reid Gallery, and Burnaby Art Gallery. Morin joined the Visual and Aboriginal Arts Faculty at Brandon University in 2014.
For more information on the CARFAC Sask Mentorship Program, contact Terri at (306) 522-9788 or firstname.lastname@example.org.