EVEN HEROES NEED HEROES
OPERATION YELLOW RIBBON - HELMETS AS ART
Each Operation Yellow Ribbon Gala we have commissioned artists to create HELMETS AS ART, that are then auctioned off during the evening of the Gala.
This year we focused on local artists to participate in our Helmets as Art project.
We are thrilled to let you know that the Art Gallery of Hamilton has graciously offered to display the helmets prior to the Gala, on November 1, 2 & 3, 2016. Viewing will be available November 1st from 6 - 9 pm, November 2nd from 11 am - 6 pm and November 3rd from 11 am - 8 pm. The Silent Auction will be held at the OYR Gala on November 8th.
The Silent Auction proceeds from your work on these helmets, will help raise the necessary funds to help support the young men and women of the Canadian Forces and their families. The funds raised from the Gala and the “Helmets as Art” silent auction are used to support funding for unexpected emergencies, financial assistance, practical and moral support for our soldiers deployed and at home including their families as well as the Regimental family that stands behind them. In support of Canada Company and its various programs as well as the Canadian Forces Morale & Welfare Services, and the Hamilton Community Foundation. Canada Company is a charitable, non-partisan organization that serves to build the bridge between business and community leaders and the Canadian military. Their goal is to ensure that the men and women in our Canadian Forces receive the widest support, care and recognition that they deserve.
This years artists and the description of their work. Photos to be added following our opening at the AGH.
2016 HELMET BIOS & DESCRIPTIONS
Robert a graphic artist from Hamilton has spent the last 8 years comprising work through various types of visual communicative arts. A graduate of Sheridan College with a focus in traditional art forms and mediums, has paved the way for Robert skills. While his current scope of work is based more so on Branding & Identity, skills like illustration, painting, & typography influence his designs and process.
Before becoming a graphic designer, Robert was a self-taught artist which provided him opportunities to paint several large scale murals. Companies such as Budweiser, Steam Whistle Jägermeister and even Sheridan College were amongst some of the brands Robert has painted murals for.
Nerves of Steel
Being a Hamiltonian, I wanted to pay homage to the men and women from this great city that have represented our country, and our city throughout the various inclinations of conflict Canada has served through. I wanted something that looked wearable, and yet was still a piece of art no matter which way you looked at it.
Most of my artistic career has been spent doing art shows, group shows and in galleries throughout Ontario. For the first time ever I have recently rented studio space in Hamilton's own Cotton Factory.
I spent the first two years of my formal education at OCAD and finished my Bachelors of fine arts at the Alberta College of Art and Design. After graduating in 2003 and moving back home to Ontario I have built up my CV showing my work in a number of galleries including the Engine gallery, have hung at TIFF. I'm also a past member of Artist Inc. and sat on the executive of the Women's Art Association of Hamilton.
My paintings are done mostly on canvas, cotton, linen or wood. I use acrylic paint because it lets me obtain almost automatic results. This is important because I like to work in layers and am constantly revisiting each surface. I tend to work on a number of pieces at one time to keep the dialog of painting more constant.
I deal with formal elements such as colour, shape and the constantly struggling with balance and composition. The direct use of pigment and semi-choreographed strokes of paint build up illusions of depth.
Presently I'm exploring themes of patience and the limbo between drawing an painting.
Inspiration is somewhat fueled by fossils and colonial organisms such as the Portuguese man o'war who appears to be an single organism but is actually formed of separate highly specialized colonies.
Someone experiencing a great loss once told me what she saw in my paintings. She said to her they represented happiness and optimism. Honestly I was surprised and honored at the same time. I had never though of them as being so powerful. If you can make one person feel something from art, especially abstract art, I think that is very special. I will never forget this and would love this opportunity to share my art with soldiers, vets and everyone in between.
This helmet stands for the freedom soldiers fight for. The freedom of self-expression the ability to live life being true to who we are. I paint fiercely and abstractly. My work is full of energy as the different values fight for their home in the illusion of depth and space. As shape meets plain the negative becomes positive. With the act of creating comes the unavoidable fate of permanency, time and colour are sacrificed being forced to lay still captured on canvas.
Zofia Glab (born in Ontario, 1994) works within the scope of figurative art using two- and three-dimensional media practices including drawing, acrylic painting, photography and sculpture. Pursuing these areas of study, she recently completed her Bachelor of Arts degree in the Honours Fine Arts Studio Practice program at the University of Waterloo, with a minor in Classical Studies. Her thesis work was comprised of military portraits which were on display in the University of Waterloo Art Gallery (UWAG) in March 2016. She currently lives and practices beside the “Mountain” in Grimsby, Ontario.
Zofia Glab, “Carry”, Mixed media, 2016
This piece deals with themes of memory and connection both emotionally and physically. The collage of portraits captures unique individuals representing different relationships as well as different stages of life. Friends and family alike, they stand for the emotional ties the bearer of this helmet may have at home and in the Forces. The hands holding the helmet in position are the physical connection. They give a sense of action and use to helmet as the hands are directly engaged with the object, but whether the helmet is being donned, removed, or adjusted is up to the viewer’s interpretation
A deep fascination with the human form is explored as I strive to capture the emotive power of portraiture in my artistic practice. Coupled with recent study of the modern military to explore themes of transformation and connection, a series of close-cropped acrylic renderings of soldiers’ faces was made under the title Basics. It was an attempt to find the thread of commonality between the audience and the subject without the interjection of politics. Snapshots of faces portrayed basic human expressions that were instantly familiar. While indications of the military were still present, they were sidelined as the faces and eyes took precedent.
Vivid colour used in the background created a feeling of vibrancy and immediacy, situating the images in the present. Whether a civilian or a soldier, the prime objective is for the artwork to have an immediate connection with the audience by reflecting our basic human emotions.
Originally located in the Hamilton area, venturing to Toronto for ten years and now back in Hamilton, Tiffany gets a lot of her inspiration for her pieces from her surroundings. People she meets or things she sees along the day to day grind will inspire her to commit them into a visual journal of works. She graduated from OCAD University in 2011 with an Honours Bachelor Degree in Design, majoring in Environmental Design. Since then, she has moved forth to not only being involved in but also curate art exhibits in the Toronto for well over six years. Her style mainly focuses on a mix of fine art, illustration and mixed media.
We all fight battles, whether they are internal or external. Sometimes we win and sometimes we lose, thats the beauty of the life we live. It builds character and makes us who we are. Remember to always go for the light, ride the wave, see the beauty in the small things, and keep on reaching. In memory of Private Spencer Dean Tillapaugh (Tilley) 1989-2014.
I would describe myself as an artistic “Jack of all Trades”. Like everyone else, I’ve produced artworks since the age of one or so. Then, when I was in grade 7, I helped illustrate a book on Hamilton’s history; in grade 11 I started doing political cartoons for a local newspaper; and then in university did ad/ illustrations and cartoons for various newspaper, publishers and stores. During university I developed a very wide range of skills in a wide variety of media.
As a high school art teacher this served me well as I could teach students all manner of media from painting to pottery, sculpture to printmaking, airbrush to photography, etc.
Some of my artistic motivation is related to demand. (e.g. when I wanted to mural my classic car I learned how to airbrush) When someone wanted a retirement cartoon I created one…… and so on.
My current motivation relates to the often remote environments I find myself when pursuing another passion….fly fishing.
Grandparents often have a unique connection with their grandchildren that parents do not experience with their own kids. Such was the relation I had with my maternal grandfather. Albert Edward Kneebone was from Cornwall, England and fought in the Great War.
As a young volunteer he joined up with aspirations to be a machine gun observer in the Royal Flying Corps but ended up with his feet firmly planted in the mud of the trenches. He became a sniper in the Rifle Brigade, formerly known as the King’s Rifles. When I was a small child he shared with me various stories and experiences of trench warfare as well as general descriptions and stories of the World War One. He did not glorify the war at all, being a devout Christian, but he did share stories with humour, humanity, pathos, adventure, and morality.
My grandfather was one of the lucky ones. He died in his bed, in his eighties, in his home, here in Hamilton.
Every Remembrance Day as I listen to “In Flander’s Fields”, I think of my grandfather and his experiences as a young man in the muck and blood, fighting a war for king and country, in a foreign land…..for unclear reasons…..because it was his duty.
My concept for the helmet is to incorporate visual elements of the Vimy Ridge memorial, in France. As we approach the one hundredth anniversary it is appropriate that we recognize the personal sacrifices as well as the significance this event had on building Canadian identity. By painting this helmet I can honour not just all soldiers from that war, and that battle, but also Canadian soldiers and their allies, who over the generations have heeded the call to duty.
Operation Yellow Ribbon continues to recognize these sacrifices and works to support those that heed that call to duty.
The Vimy Helmet
The Battle of Vimy Ridge, during WWI is Canada's most famous military victory. This event is often touted as the birth of Canadian identity. The striking memorial, in France, stands as a remembrance to the more than 10,000 Canadians lost in the assault. But more than that, it represents to Canadians a sum of all the lives lost in the Great War.
The helmet features the figure of a mourning Mother Canada, or “Canada Bereft”, displayed on the front. The back of the helmet shows the Vimy monument, in France. On the right hand side is the badge of the Canadian Expeditionary Force, and on the left side is a poppy, reminding us of Lieutenant Colonel John McCrae’s poem, “In Flanders Fields”. Finally, behind the main images are blowing leaves creating a “camo” effect while at the same time representing fallen Canadian soldiers as fallen maple leaves.
As a self-taught artist born in Hamilton, I took up oil painting in my teens & dabbled years in between only seriously getting back into painting again with acrylics the last 7 yrs. & loving it. The more I do the better I seem to be getting & this 61 yr. young lady is not done yet… I’m just getting started. I think creating a helmet such as this would be a honour. My dad was a Vet in WW2 & I am grateful, humbled for what these men & women did & do for their country.
"Well, when I took on this project I didn't really know anything about the Rileys [RHLI] even the name Riley being associated with them, just a name I'd heard of. Being a Hamiltonian I felt a little ashamed of that, especially since my Dad was a vet.I had much to learn.
In order to do the helmet justice, the Rileys justice, I had to get to know them. What uniforms did they wear , what events happened in their lives. The times that they were away from home missing their families while fighting for their country. The more I read about them the more I wanted to tell their stories as best I could & not just paint a pretty picture on a helmet. I hope I've captured that."
Deb Mack, a proud Hamiltonian
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Helmets as Art, 2014
SOLDIERS: LIVES AND LIGHT
When I first saw the helmet I thought of the uniformity of uniforms. I thought of soldiers, lined up, indistinguishable from one another. I realized that when I see soldiers, I think of the uniform, the purpose, the part they play, not the human. I may be alone in this, but I suspect not. I understand that this is by design, dictated by the nature of conflict and peacekeeping, invoking solidarity. The helmet revealed this to me, the helmet taught me of my perspective, one I am not proud of. Lest we Forget that the soldier is much more, beyond the uniform, that there are lives and light under the helmet.
VOICES FROM THE PAST
Born 1960 Mchigeeng reservation Manitoulin Island, Ontario, Canada, Ojibway Indian
This work mirrors the process of thoughtful strategic thinking where any direction is possible.
We walk forward never in truly straight lines. Often a series of curves with the hope that the curve will become a circle that reaches around the globe and includes all of us.
We hope that we can cover more ground than we imagined but we know this journey is long and incomplete and unfinished, a metaphor for continued efforts to achieve.
Dr. Christa Louise Favot
Seven Grandfathers: Truth, Wisdom, Respect, Honesty, Humility, Love, Bravery
David is an artist, musician and metalworker of functional objects. He was born in Hamilton and now lives in Brantford, Ontario.
His artistic practice is grounded in the reclamation of materials. The interaction of the industrial and natural recur in the materials, processes and images he uses and explores.
My Grandfather was in WWII and fought with the Italian military. Growing up it was something he never talked about but I remember hearing stories of his experience from my grandmother.
The pattern I used on my helmet is an Italian fabric pattern that reminds me of spending time with him at his house. As well the colour palette reflects some of the colours I associate with my experience in the 1980's as a child.
BEING A CANADIAN
When contemplating the vastness that is our universe one thing is constant.
Just how lucky we truly are. Being a Canadian is being truly wealthy. Being a Canadian is diverse. Being a Canadian we experience a level of peace that only few in the world experience.
We are forever grateful for the level of protection our troops provide.
THE STARS ARE ALWAYS OUT THERE
Seth Joseph Brouwers
When I think of a soldier, I imagine them within their own imagination with all their memories and all their thoughts and feelings. Rain or shine, dark or light, war or peace, the stars are always out there. We are but a speck in the universe, but at the same time we are each the centre of our own universe.
The planetary rings are true to scale representation of the rings of Saturn. Scale 1:500,000,000.
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Helmets as Art, 2012
CIRCULATION OF GOODS
My work is broadly concerned with how art objects operate as instruments for connecting with
others and our own history. With this piece, I explore how the meaning ascribed to a cultural
object evolves as it passes through different hands: from the hands of the artist, the preparator,
the curator, the collector and so on.
Adam Matak was born in Wallaceburg, ON and now lives in Toronto, ON. Matak has exhibited
in museums and galleries throughout Ontario, has had works selected to promote Art Toronto
(formerly the Toronto International Art Fair) and is profiled in the new art history textbook,
ArtWorks prepared for Canadian secondary education.
I treated the helmet as any other surface I've drawn or painted on, I was born in London
Ontario, I dunno, career highlights have been showing in galleries in different cities around the
world, and currently my art is displayed in various private residences.
Peter Thompson was born in London, Ontario in 1972 where he attended H.B. Beal Secondary
School with Marc Bell and Jason McLean. In 2009 Thompson’s work was featured in the
traveling group show Pulp Fiction at Museum London and MOCCA, Toronto. Thompson has
also exhibited in San Francisco, New York, Portland and Seattle and was recently included in
Family Shirt at Krets Gallery in Malmo, Sweden.
HYDROPONIC UNIT (RED POPPY)
For this project, I have constructed a simulated hydroponic unit within a powerful symbol of the
Canadian Military, allowing a large silk poppy to flourish. This poppy serves as a
symbol to remind us of the important role that soldiers have served in our nation’s history. It
urges the viewer to remember our past and the sacrifices that have been made for us.
Brad’s work has been shown at Nuit Blanche in Toronto, Esam Caen in France, Preteen in
Mexico and Dokfest in Germany and was a TIFF Student Showcase nominee, Images Festival
Toronto Best Student Film.
MONARCH OF THE NORTH
This iconic image of a solitary moose climbing a hill seemed an appropriate metaphor for the
Canadian spirit, as exemplified by the courage and bravery of our Armed Forces.
Charles’s paintings hang in public and private collections around the world. Those of the queen,
moose, and maple leaf flag are pop icons of Canadian art. The steel and granite moose
silhouette sculptures have been installed across Canada. Two are on the University of Toronto
campus. Charles created the painting SIDE BY SIDE depicting a Canadian and American flag
together on one pole for the Canada Loves New York rally following the events of September
My paintings use form and colour in an attempt to create feelings and ideas in the
Since the 1990’s David Urban has worked with abstraction within his paintings which are
recognized stylistically for their geometric compositions and bold colours. Urban is engaged in a
very physical way, in the act of painting, through his broad and gestural use of line. His surfaces
are often thickly painted as he builds up several layers of paint in often textured surfaces. His
expressive works come out of his knowledge of music, literature. For the last ten years he has
painted what he feels is the primacy of the imagination.
In the work Detritus I have used materials that are directly of the earth. Charcoal, is a carbon material that results from greatly heated organic matter. Wax is a binder and has been used for thousands of years as a means of keeping a flame, providing much needed heat and warmth. Red Ochre is directly of the earth and symbolizes our connection to the elemental world. The choice of the materials, through the associative power of each, ultimately serves as tangible reminders of the sacrifices soldiers make when serving our country.
Don Russel was born in Stephenville, Newfoundland and has the distinction of having artwork accepted into the Canadiana Fund collection.
It is a painting indebted to the late paintings of Marsden Hartley. Painting still life/flowers carries many meanings to me. They seem to represent the great strength and fragility of beauty; a fleeting moment in time that never
THE MAPLE LEAF FOREVER
Long before the Canadian flag appeared in 1965 the maple leaf has been a symbol of the north and nationhood. In the eighteenth century the settlements of New France had adopted the leaf of the maple tree as a symbol. In 1868 both Ontario and Quebec used the leaf symbol in their coat of arms. Alexander Muir composed the patriotic "The Maple Leaf Forever, “in 1867. The song quickly became an unofficial anthem in English-speaking Canada. The maple leaf found its way to the Canadian coat of arms in 1921. The maple leaf was used as a regimental symbol in
the 1800¹s and Canadian solders wore badges based on the maple leaf design during the First World War.
Jordan Broadworth is regarded as a leading painter of his generation. He is Canadian by birthand training and has been exhibiting his paintings professionally for over twenty years.
THE CAP OF INVISIBILITY
Hermes was the trickster of Greek mythology. He wore the Cap of invisibility (a helmet fashioned with wings) during his battle with Hippolytos. In the aboriginal cultures of the Pacific West Coast the trickster is Raven. Raven is cunning intelligent and attracted to shiny objects. I have fused raven wings and a luxury Hermes scarf onto a military helmet creating a glittering hybrid object that reflects on the differences, conflicts, and similarities of European and Indigenous mythologies and cultures.
Kent Monkman is an artist of Cree ancestry who works with painting, film/video, performance, and installation. He has had solo exhibitions in some of Canada’s top galleries and has had award-winning short film and video works at international festivals.
For me nothing is quite as Canadian as the intense beauty and peace of a summer night sitting out under the Northern Lights. It always gives me a strong sense of belonging and appreciation for this big beautiful country of ours. It's a theme I've explored many times in my own work and when I started to think about our soldiers and the sacrifice they make to serve Canada, it seemed like a natural fit.
Kim’s work is in Glenbow Museum in Calgary, The Montreal Museum of Fine Arts and The Neumann Family Collection in New York.
The following Helmet is a collaboration of young artist from “Art City” in the West Broadway neighbourhood of Winnipeg.
“The Story of Art City is the fantastic works produced within its doors, that feed the community and have forever changed the tenor of the neighbourhood. I invite you to open this book (Art City), open your heart and share with us the transformative power of art.”
Lovingly, Wanda Koop, Art City Founder, 1997
JAMES ST. N. (ART CRAWL) CAMOUFLAGE
The studio where I paint intuitively by night is in the woods. In daylight the paintings are taken outside to be evaluated and continued as part of the natural environment.
Hons. BA Art and Art History McMaster. Exhibited internationally since 1977
Born: Oakville, Ontario, 1956
B.A. (Hons) McMaster University 1979, Art and Art History
Artist in Residence, St Johns College, Santa Fe NM 1982-4
Fundamental Yacht Design, Humber College
Final Cut Pro, Rhode Island School of Design
On this helmet I have created a grove of trees, a scrub of bush. The soldier looks out from this grove towards a distant field, a distant horizon. Perhaps the soldier is hidden by the grove. Perhaps he is lying in wait; on guard; wary; observant; attentive. Vigilant. The grove is painted with an eye towards the history of landscape painting. A charcoal drawing on the helmet is overlaid with layers of oil glazes in a process that was developed in the 18th
and 19th centuries. We look through these layers of translucent colour much like we look back through the layers of time. We are rooted in history.
Wearing the helmet, however, we look with new eyes, vigilant, observant eyes — towards the future and towards the hope of return.
For years I have been interested in how mediated images of a televised war act to distance and disconnect viewers from the real experience. Being confronted with the helmet, a very real residue of war, I have created a piece called Solider On, where I have applied a digitized image of a soldier on the front of the helmet. The image and the helmet bring together a tactile and physical reminder of the sacrifice and reality of war.
Wanda was born in Vancouver, BC.
Wanda Koop is one of Canada's most distinguished artists. Her painting career spans three decades and includes over 50 solo exhibitions, across Canada and around the world. Her art is represented in numerous public and private collections, such as the National Gallery of Canada, which, together with the Winnipeg Art Gallery, organized a major survey of her work in 2011 -2012.
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NOVEMBER 8TH, 2016, 6:30 PM
OPERATION YELLOW RIBBON 2016 GALA:
A TRIBUTE TO OUR SOLDIERS & THEIR FAMILIES