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8 x 8 x 100 – A Puzzling Landscape

Thursday, 10 October 2013. Posted in Shootin' the Breeze

8 x 8 x 100 – A Puzzling Landscape

8x8x100 – A Puzzling Landscape

By Brad Quarin

When painter Linda Anderson-Stewart looked at the nature around her, she saw “an inherent puzzle.”

She’s lived in Twin Butte for 15 years, with property here for longer than that. She has studied art history and worked in various media, and has produced figurative art, but when she arrived she “was taken in by the landscape” and began painting it.

Linda’s appreciation for the land is partially aesthetic and partially emotional. “It’s still a relatively wild place to me, which I think is harder and harder to find,” she says. “I really love this place.”

And so came 8 × 8 × 100, Linda’s series of paintings now on display at Lebel Gallery in Pincher Creek, which will be featured in a reception tomorrow evening.

The exhibit consists of 100 landscape paintings, each eight inches by eight inches, hence the name. Linda explains that each canvas is a fragment. Displayed together, they “create the illusion of a bigger image.”

Viewers will put the pieces together in their minds to see the larger image, but there is no definite solution, so it will vary by person. The idea is that people will bring their own subjective views to the work, drawing on their memories and knowledge, making this an interactive exhibition.

“It’s been an interesting study in human nature for me, just listening to what people see,” Linda says.

She has never done a puzzle-themed work before, though there’s precedent for it in art history.

Work on 8 × 8 × 100 started last September and took all winter. Linda describes it as “a labour of love,” requiring much thought and play. Returning to landscapes she’d painted before was “like revisiting a lot of old friends.”

Creating many small paintings was also something fun before her next project, which will consist of much larger paintings requiring “a lot of hard, physical work.” It will be on display at the Gust Gallery in Waterton next August and September.

The concept of 8 × 8 × 100 was a challenge to pull off, but she’s pleased with how it turned out and how people have received it. The crowd has been divided between those who want to see the pieces in their original order and those who’ve enjoyed seeing them rearranged.

For the reception on Thursday, the pieces will be moved around again. Linda will be at the gallery and may talk about her work. The reception lasts from 7 to 9 p.m., and refreshments will be served. The exhibit will remain at Lebel Gallery until Nov. 2.

Photo by Brad Quarin

 

 

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From the Oct. 9/13 print edition of Shootin’ the Breeze.
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