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ORNAMENT, CHRISTMAS TREE

https://collections.galtmuseum.com/en/permalink/artifact12042
Other Name
ANGEL
Date Range From
1960
Date Range To
2003
Material Type
Artifact
Materials
PLASTIC, COTTON
Catalogue Number
P20030049032
  1 image  
Material Type
Artifact
Other Name
ANGEL
Date Range From
1960
Date Range To
2003
Materials
PLASTIC, COTTON
No. Pieces
1
Length
18
Width
9
Description
PLASTIC ANGEL WITH WINGS IN A CLOUD OF COTTON. GLD STRING ATTACHED TO TOP OF ANGEL. ANGEL HAS CHILD-LIKE APPEARANCE WITH CLOSED EYES, ROSY CHEEKS, AND HANDS FOLDED IN PRAYER GESTURE. FACE AND WINGS ARE HAND PAINTED. YLLW WINGS ON BACK. ANGEL IS SITTING IN A CLOUD MADE FROM COTTON WITH SPARKLES AND FIVE SILVER STARS.
Subjects
ART
Historical Association
DECORATIVE ARTS
History
BELONGED TO DONOR'S AUNT, IRIS STEWART. SEE P20030049001 FOR COMPLETE HISTORY.
Catalogue Number
P20030049032
Acquisition Date
2003-10
Collection
Museum
Images
Less detail
Other Name
JAPANESE "KABEKAKE"
Date Range From
1980
Date Range To
1990
Material Type
Artifact
Materials
WOOD
Catalogue Number
P19970041097
  1 image  
Material Type
Artifact
Other Name
JAPANESE "KABEKAKE"
Date Range From
1980
Date Range To
1990
Materials
WOOD
No. Pieces
1
Height
0.7
Length
38.2
Width
5.7
Description
WOODEN PLAQUE HAS NATURAL FINISH AND IS RECTANGULAR IN SHAPE WITH BOTTOM RIGHT CORNER CUT AWAY. PLAQUE HAD BLACK PAINTED JAPANESE CHARACTERS DOWN LENGTH. AT BOTTOM IS CIRCULAR RED STAMP.
Subjects
ART
Historical Association
FINE ARTS
History
WALL HANGING HUNG IN THE NAKAYAMA HOME IN VANCOUVER AFTER REV. NAKAYAMA RETURNED THERE IN 1980. THE NAKAYAMA FAMILY WERE ORIGINALLY FROM VANCOUVER AND WERE INTERNED IN SLOCAN CITY DURING THE SECOND WORLD WAR. FOLLOWING THE WAR THE NAKAYAMA FAMILY MOVED TO COALDALE, ALBERTA. AT COALDALE REV NAKAYAMA FOUNDED THE ANGLICAN CHURCH OF THE ASCENSION WHERE HE WAS RECTOR FROM 1945 TO 1970. SEE RECORD P19970041001 FOR EXPANDED BIOGRAPHICAL INFORMATION AND PERMANENT FILE FOR FURTHER HISTORY. *UPDATE* IN 2015 COLLECTIONS ASSISTANT JANE EDMUNDSON CONDUCTED A SURVEY OF ART OBJECTS. NO NEW INFORMATION ABOUT THIS ARTIFACT WAS FOUND. THE JAPANESE WORD "KABEKAKE" TRANSLATES AS "ORNAMENT".
Catalogue Number
P19970041097
Acquisition Date
1997-01
Collection
Museum
Images
Less detail
Other Name
FIGURINE
Date Range From
1980
Date Range To
1990
Material Type
Artifact
Materials
LEAD, COPPER
Catalogue Number
P19970041827
Material Type
Artifact
Other Name
FIGURINE
Date Range From
1980
Date Range To
1990
Materials
LEAD, COPPER
No. Pieces
1
Height
10.7
Length
4.5
Width
3.5
Description
LEAD SCULPTURE OF A FACELESS CHILD IN RAIN GEAR. RAIN GEAR HAS COPPER BUTTONS. STAMPED INTO BASE IS "HUDSON".
Subjects
ART
Historical Association
DECORATIVE ARTS
History
SCULPTURE WAS FOUND AMONG THE BELONGINGS OF DONOR'S PARENTS, REV. G.G. AND LOIS NAKAYAMA. ORIGIN UNKNOWN. THE NAKAYAMA FAMILY WAS ORIGINALLY FROM VANCOUVER BUT MOVED TO COALDALE FOLLOWING THE SECOND WORLD WAR WHEN THEY WERE INTERNED AT SLOCAN CITY IN THE INTERIOR OF BRITISH COLUMBIA BY THE CANADIAN GOVERNMENT. THE DONOR'S FATHER, REV. CANON G.G. NAKAYAMA, WAS AN ANGLICAN MINISTER IN VANCOUVER, AND THEN ESTABLISHED THE CHURCH OF THE ASCENSION IN COALDALE IN 1945 WHERE HE SERVED UNTIL 1970. SEE RECORD P19970041001 FOR EXPANDED BIOGRAPHICAL INFORMATION AND PERMANENT FILE FOR FURTHER HISTORY.
Catalogue Number
P19970041827
Acquisition Date
1997-01
Collection
Museum
Less detail
Other Name
"TREES"
Date Range From
1990
Date Range To
2000
Material Type
Artifact
Materials
WOOD, PAINT, CARDBOARD
Catalogue Number
P20190006001
  2 images  
Material Type
Artifact
Other Name
"TREES"
Date Range From
1990
Date Range To
2000
Materials
WOOD, PAINT, CARDBOARD
No. Pieces
1
Length
38.2
Width
48.4
Description
OIL ON WOOD PANEL PAINTING IN BROWN WOODEN FRAME. PAINTING DEPICTS TWO CLUSTERS OF TREES WITH GREEN AND YELLOW-ORANGE LEAVES, WITH A BROWN FOREGROUND AND BLUE BACKGROUND. BACKGROUND HAS TWO TONES OF BLUE DEPICTING HILLS AND SKY. FOREGROUND HAS RED AND GOLD TONES. BRUSH STROKES ARE DISTINCT SHOWING GRASS IN FOREROUND; PAINTING HAS PAINT APPLIED HEAVILY TO YELLOW-ORANGE TREE LEAVES. PAINTING IS SIGNED IN BLUE IN FRONT LOWER RIGHT CORNER OF CANVAS “M. PISKO”. FRAME AROUND CANVAS IS BROWN WITH DOUBLE-CIRCLES ENGRAVED BETWEEN DOUBLE LINES ALONG TRIM; FRAME HAS FOUR SCREWS LOCATED AT UPPER AND LOWER LEFT AND RIGHT CORNERS. BACK OF FRAME HAS CARDBOARD BACKING SECURED TO WOODEN FRAME WITH SILVER TAPE. CARDBOARD BACKING HAS WHITE LABEL ON LEFT SIDE WITH HANDWRITTEN TEXT IN BLACK INK “MIKE PISKO, 1998 $100.00”; CARDBOARD BACKING HAS HANDWRITTEN TEXT IN PENCIL IN UPPER LEFT CORNER “TRUCK [UNDERLINED], 01 0066”. FRONT OF CANVAS HAS YELLOW DISCOLORATION AND STAINING IN UPPER LEFT AND RIGHT CORNERS. FRONT OF FRAME HAS MINOR CHIPPING AND DENTS ALONG OUTER EDGES. CARDBOARD BACKING HAS BROWN AND BLUE STAINING; BACK OF FRAME HAS WHITE STAINING ALONG LOWER LEFT EDGE, AND BLUE STAINING AT UPPER LEFT EDGE; UPPER RIGHT EDGE OF FRAME IS SPLITTING ALONG SEAM. OVERALL VERY GOOD CONDITION.
Subjects
ART
Historical Association
FINE ARTS
History
ON MARCH 5, 2019, COLLECTIONS TECHNICIAN KEVIN MACLEAN INTERVIEWED DON FLAIG REGARDING HIS DONATION OF ARTWORKS. THE ARTWORKS WERE COLLECTED BY FLAIG’S PARENTS, HELEN AND LLOYD FLAIG. ON THE PAINTING BY MIKE PISKO, FLAIG RECALLED, “I HAVE NO MEMORY OF [KNOWING PISKO OR OTHER SKETCH CLUB MEMBERS]. OCCASIONALLY [MY PARENTS] WOULD MENTION THEIR NAMES, AS YOU MIGHT SPEAK OF FRIENDS. I KNOW THEY WOULD GO OUT, AND DO THE ART ELSEWHERE, OR SOME AT HOME. IT JUST SEEMED NATURAL THAT THEY WOULD DEAL WITH THEIR ARTIST FRIENDS…THAT WOULD HAVE BEEN WHEN I WAS VERY YOUNG.” FLAIG ELABORATED ON HIS PARENTS’ AVID INTEREST IN LOCAL ART, NOTING, “MOM AND DAD ALWAYS HAD ART IN THE HOUSE. THEY WERE ALWAYS DOING ART. I REMEMBER DAD DOING LARGE PLASTER SCULPTURES, IN THE BASEMENT, IN THE CITY, AND MOM WAS ALWAYS PAINTING AND THROWING POTS, AND DOING SOMETHING FUNNY OUT IN THE BACK YARD, ART-WISE. GROWING UP, I ASSUMED EVERYBODY HAD ART IN THE HOUSE, BUT I’VE REALIZED THAT’S NOT THE CASE. NOT EVERYBODY LIKES HAVING ART AROUND, ALTHOUGH [THERE IS EFFORT IN] FINDING ART THAT YOU LIKE, AND ACQUIRING IT, OR CREATING IT, AND KEEPING IT. THERE WAS ALWAYS SOMETHING DIFFERENT HANGING ON THE WALLS IN THE HOUSE. [MOM AND DAD] WERE ALWAYS MOVING IT AROUND. THESE THREE PAINTINGS [BY MIKE PISKO AND ERNEST RIETHMAN], I’M AWARE THAT THESE PEOPLE WERE FRIENDS OF MOM AND DAD. THEY WERE …ARTISTS. I DON’T KNOW MUCH ABOUT THEM OTHER THAN THAT THEY WOULD OFTEN GO OUT TO SKETCH, AND PAINT, AND THEIR NAMES ARE FAMILIAR TO ME. [THE ARTWORKS] MEANT SOMETHING TO [MY PARENTS], WHETHER THEY BOUGHT THEM OR THEY WERE JUST GIFTS FROM OTHER ARTISTS, I’LL NEVER KNOW, BUT THERE HAS OBVIOUSLY BEEN A LOT OF CARE AND EFFORT PUT INTO THE WORKS BY THE ARTISTS. I HAVE A LARGE NUMBER OF MY MOTHER’S PAINTINGS, BUT THERE ARE LOTS OF THOSE AROUND THE CITY, AND HER WORK IS WELL PRESERVED. THESE ONES…I KNOW THEY ARE LOCAL ARTISTS SOMEWHERE NOW.” FLAIG RECALLED HIS PARENTS AND THEIR HOME IN LETHBRIDGE, “I GREW UP IN TOWN, ON HENDERSON LAKE BOULEVARD. [MY PARENTS] MOVED OUT IN THE EARLY 1970S TO BROXBURN ROAD. SOME OF [THE PAINTINGS] I’D HAVE SEEN THERE AT HENDERSON LAKE BOULEVARD, AND THE REST WOULD HAVE BEEN ON THE FARM. THEY WOULD HAVE BEEN UP ON THE WALLS, OR DOWN IN THE BASEMENT. THINGS WERE ALWAYS MOVING AROUND, BUT THESE ARE PAINTINGS THAT ARE FAMILIAR TO ME. NOT THAT I PAID THAT MUCH ATTENTION TO THEM, BECAUSE THERE WERE ALWAYS PAINTINGS AROUND, AND I NEVER THOUGHT TO ASK.” “MIKE PISKO IS THE NAME THAT COMES [TO MIND ON ARTISTS MY MOM SPENT MORE TIME WITH]; HAS MORE PAINTINGS, MEMORY-WISE, FOR SURE. OUT ON BROXBURN ROAD, THAT’S WHEN THEY MET THE MALKAS’. MOM SPOKE FREQUENTLY OF MELISSA, AND I PROBABLY MET THEM IN PASSING, BECAUSE I WAS ON TO OTHER STUFF. BUT I THINK THAT, WHEREVER THEY WERE, THEY WOULD HAVE REACHED OUT AND GOT IN TOUCH WITH OTHER ARTISTS. PLUS, WHERE THEY WERE ON BROXBURN ROAD, IT WAS A PLACE WHERE WE COULD DO JUST ABOUT ANYTHING—BUILDING THINGS, TEARING THINGS DOWN, MAKING ART, BLOWING STUFF UP, AS KIDS DO. THERE WERE ALWAYS ANIMALS, SOME HORSES, AND ONE DISASTROUS ATTEMPT AT RAISING SHEEP BY MY FATHER. THEY WERE ALWAYS INTO SOMETHING.” ON HIS MOTIVATIONS FOR DONATING, FLAIG ELABORATED, “AS TIME GOES BY, WE FIND THE NEED TO TIDY UP AND GET READY FOR THE NEXT STAGE OF LIFE. PART OF IT IS FINDING ROOM FOR SOME OF THESE WORKS OF ART THAT HAVE BEEN IN MY HOUSE AND HAVE SURVIVED, SOMEWHAT MIRACULOUSLY, SINCE MOM AND DAD LEFT A LITTLE FAR AND I TOOK THEM OVER, AS WE WERE EMPTYING OUT THE PLACE. THEY’VE BEEN IN MY BASEMENT, UNAPPRECIATED, AND I SUPPOSE AT SOME RISK OF BEING FORGOTTEN, OR LOST, OR THROWN OUT. THEY DO HAVE SOME SENTIMENTAL VALUE FOR ME, AND I CAN APPRECIATE THE ARTWORK THAT IS IN THE PIECES, MYSELF, TO A LIMITED DEGREE.” “MOM AND DAD HAD REACHED THE END OF THE ROAD...AS BEING ABLE TO TAKE CARE OF THEIR FIVE ACRES…OUT ON BROXBURN ROAD. THESE WORKS WERE IN THEIR PLACE, AND, AS WE CLEANED THE PLACE OUT, I TOOK THEM AND PROTECTED THEM, AND SAVED THEM FROM THE BINS…I’M PUTTING THAT AT 2011.” IN 2014, COLLECTIONS ASSISTANT JANE EDMUNDSON CONDUCTED A SURVEY OF ART OBJECTS. THE FOLLOWING BIOGRAPHICAL INFORMATION ON MICHAEL PISKO WAS FOUND IN A PRESS RELEASE ANNOUNCING THE 'MICHAEL PISKO MEMORIAL AWARD', WHICH WAS ESTABLISHED BY THE ARTIST'S WIDOW AND THE ALBERTA SOCIETY OF ARTISTS IN 2000, TO BE AWARDED TO A GRADUATING BFA DEGREE PAINTER FROM THE UNIVERSITY OF LETHBRIDGE: "MICHAEL PISKO WAS BORN IN LETHBRIDGE IN 1913. HE MADE HIS LIVING AS A SUCCESSFUL SIGN PAINTER THROUGH HIS BUSINESS, CITY SIGN COMPANY, BUT LANDSCAPE PAINTING WAS HIS LIFE'S FULFILLMENT. TO HONE HIS SKILLS, HE STUDIED THREE SUMMERS AT THE BANFF SCHOOL OF FINE ARTS AND SOUGHT INSTRUCTION FROM SENIOR VISITING ARTISTS WHO CAME TO LETHBRIDGE ON INVITATION OF THE LETHBRIDGE SKETCH CLUB, OF WHICH HE, IN 1937, WAS ONE OF THE FOUNDING MEMBERS. PISKO GREATLY ADMIRED A.Y. JACKSON, THE GROUP OF SEVEN MASTER, WITH WHOM HE HAD THE OPPORTUNITY TO SKETCH AND PAINT AROUND LETHBRIDGE WHENEVER JACKSON CAME TO TOWN TO VISIT HIS BROTHER. HE WAS ALSO DEEPLY INFLUENCED BY H.G. GLYDE, WHO TAUGHT AT THE ALBERTA COLLEGE OF ART IN CALGARY AND AT THE BANFF SCHOOL OF FINE ARTS AND WHO VISITED LETHBRIDGE TO TEACH ART CLASSES AT THE LETHBRIDGE SKETCH CLUB. IN 1947 PISKO WAS ACCEPTED FOR MEMBERSHIP IN THE ALBERTA SOCIETY OF ARTISTS. HE WAS A PROLIFIC PAINTER, WHO EXHIBITED REGULARLY WITH THE LETHBRIDGE SKETCH CLUB AND THE ALBERTA SOCIETY OF ARTISTS. HIS WORK IS REPRESENTED IN MANY PRIVATE, CORPORATE AND PUBLIC COLLECTIONS, AMONG THEM THE ALBERTA FOUNDATION FOR THE ARTS AND THE UNIVERSITY OF LETHBRIDGE. MICHAEL PISKO PASSED AWAY IN 1999." FOR MORE INFORMATION INCLUDING THE FULL INTERVIEW TRANSCRIPTION AND LETHBRIDGE HERALD ARTICLES, PLEASE SEE THE PERMANENT FILE P20190006001-GA.
Catalogue Number
P20190006001
Acquisition Date
2019-03
Collection
Museum
Images
Less detail
Other Name
2 GIRLS DANCING
Date Range From
1990
Date Range To
2000
Material Type
Artifact
Materials
MASONITE
Catalogue Number
P20020006002
  1 image  
Material Type
Artifact
Other Name
2 GIRLS DANCING
Date Range From
1990
Date Range To
2000
Materials
MASONITE
No. Pieces
1
Height
0.6
Length
60.5
Width
49.4
Description
OIL ON MASONITE; NAIVE STYLE OF PAINTING. PICTURES TWO GIRLS DANCING. ONE IS WEARING A WHITE BLOUSE AND BLUE SKIRT, THE OTHER IS WEARING A RED AND BLACK DRESS, WITH A RED HAIRBAND. THEY ARE IN A ROOM WITH GREEN AND YELLOW WALLS, A GREEN FLOOR AND 2 DOORS BEHIND THEM. THERE IS ALSO A RADIATOR ON THE WALL. ARTIST'S SIGNATURE, ON RIGHT SIDE OF PAINTING, HAS BEEN CUT OFF: "H FLA". PAINTING IS UNFRAMED.
Subjects
ART
Historical Association
FINE ARTS
History
PAINTED BY DONOR, HELEN FLAIG (1929 - 2015), AS PART OF HER "CHILDHOOD IN THE 30S" SERIES. PAINTING WAS INSPIRED BY ARTIST'S MEMORY OF LIFE ON THE PRAIRIES. "LUCKILY THE HOUSE WAS LARGE. WE COULD PRACTICE DANCING THROUGH THE LIVING ROOM, DOWN THE HALL, THROUGH THE KITCHEN, AROUND THE DINING ROOM TABLE AND THROUGH SLIDING DOORS THROUGH THE LIVING ROOM." FLAIG'S FATHER, LEWIS ALEXANDER HUMMASON, LEFT ONTARIO IN 1905 TO TAKE HIS SICK BROTHER'S PLACE TO GO HOMESTEADING IN SASKATCHEWAN. HER MOTHER, ESTELLA MARY STUBBS, WAS 8 YEARS YOUNGER THEN HER FATHER; SHE HAD COME WEST WITH HER PARENTS AND HER SISTER TO CALGARY; ESTELLA'S FATHER WAS A CARPENTER. ESTELLA BECAME A SCHOOL TEACHER AND IN THAT ROLE SHE TOOK A POSITION IN LOCKWOOD, SK. THE GREAT FLU CLOSED THE SCHOOL AND SHE BECAME A NURSE. FLAIG'S FATHER BECAME A HANDY MAN HELPING THE SICK, AND IN THIS WAY MET HIS WIFE. THERE WERE 8 CHILDREN IN DONOR'S FAMILY, HELEN WAS THE SEVENTH, BORN ON THE FARM IN LOCKWOOD IN 1929. HELEN'S YOUNGER SISTER BLANCHE DIED WHEN SHE WAS NEARLY NINE - THE PAINTINGS IN THIS SERIES REFERENCE THE TIMES WHEN SHE AND BLANCHE PLAYED TOGETHER. SHE STARTED THE "CHILDHOOD IN THE 30S" PAINTINGS IN 1994 AS A WAY TO BRING SOME CHEER INTO HER OLDER SISTER FERN'S LIFE, WHO WAS IN A COMA AT THE TIME. HELEN'S HUSBAND LLOYD FLAIG WAS RAISED IN ALBERTA. SHE AND LLOYD MET IN 1949 WHILE WORKING AT THE PSYCHIATRIC HOSPITAL IN NORTH BATTLEFORD, SK. THEY MOVED TO CALGARY WHERE LLOYD DECIDED TO BECOME A SCHOOL TEACHER AND HIS FIRST POSITION WAS IN LETHBRIDGE IN 1955. HELEN HAS ALWAYS BEEN INTERESTED IN DRAWING AND JOINED THE LETHBRIDGE SKETCH CLUB IN 1955. HELEN STARTED POTTERY CLASSES IN 1964 WITH THE OLDMAN RIVER POTTERS GUILD AND CONTINUED WITH THEM TO THE PRESENT DAY. SHE AND LLOYD MOVED TO THEIR ACREAGE IN 1974, BUT SHE HAS CONTINUED TO TAKE COURSES, ESPECIALLY FIGURATIVE WORK AT BOWMAN ART'S CENTER, THE COMMUNITY COLLEGE, UNIVERSITY OF LETHBRIDGE, AND AT RED DEER COLLEGE. *UPDATE* IN 2014 COLLECTIONS ASSISTANT JANE EDMUNDSON CONDUCTED A SURVEY OF ART OBJECTS. SHE FOUND THE FOLLOWING DESCRIPTION OF HELEN FLAIG'S 'CHILDHOOD IN THE 1930S' SERIES IN THE BROCHURE PRODUCED BY THE RED DEER AND DISTRICT MUSEUM FOR THE 1997 EXHIBITION OF FLAIG'S WORK, WRITTEN BY EXHIBITS COORDINATOR DIANA ANDERSON: "THIS SERIES OF 20 PAINTINGS RETURNS HELEN TO HER CHILDHOOD DAYS OF GROWING UP ON A FARM IN RURAL SASKATCHEWAN... HELEN CHOOSES THE THINGS THAT MEANT SOMETHING TO HER. SHE STARTED WITH GRASSES AND VEGETABLES AND HER OWN CHILDREN, ORDINARY THINGS THAT SURROUNDED HER... HELEN IS INTERSTED IN THE MOOD OF THE PAINTINGS MORE THAN THE ACCURACY OF THE IMAGE. HER PERSONAL VISION AND FRESHNESS OF CONCEPT GIVE THIS SERIES ITS VISUAL IMPACT THROUGH THE USE OF NAIVE PAINTING... NAIVE PAINTING CAN BE DESCRIBED AS A TYPE OF PAINTING THAT IS UNSOPHISTICATED, CHILDLIKE, SIMPLE OR UNWORLDLY... IN HELEN'S CASE, THIS IS IMPLY A STYLE THAT SHE CHOSE TO BETTER EXPRESS HER SUBJECT MATTER, AS IT CAPTURES MOST CLOSELY THE FLAVOUR SHE WANTED TO GIVE OF THE 1930S... THE PAINTINGS SHOW AN OPEN, HONEST APPROACH TO THE SUBJECT AND EACH PAINTING HOLDS SPECIAL MEANING FOR HELEN." FOR A COPY OF THE BROCHURE AND FURTHER BIOGRAPHICAL INFORMATION ON THE ARTIST, SEE PERMANENT FILE P20020006001. *UPDATE* ON MARCH 5, 2019, COLLECTIONS TECHNICIAN KEVIN MACLEAN INTERVIEWED DON FLAIG REGARDING HIS DONATION OF ARTWORKS COLLECTED BY HIS PARENTS, HELEN AND LLOYD FLAIG. IN HIS INTERVIEW, DON FLAIG SPOKE ABOUT HIS MOTHER'S, HELEN FLAIG'S, ART PRACTICE. ON HIS MOTHER’S PAINTINGS AND PRACTICE, DON FLAIG ELABORATED, “I LEARNED LATER, THAT [MY MOTHER’S LOVE OF ART] WAS BORN OUT OF HER DESIRE TO BRING ART TO HER SISTER, FERN, WHO HAD A BRAIN ANEURYSM WHEN SHE WAS ABOUT FIFTEEN YEARS OLD. [FERN] SPENT MANY YEARS IN HOSPITAL IN LABRECQUE, IN SASKATCHEWAN, BUT [MOM] NEVER GOT THERE; NEVER GOT THE PAINTINGS OUT THERE. THE ART WORK IS, IN SOME WAYS, CRUDE. THERE ARE NO SHADOWS; THE PEOPLE ARE KIND OF LUMPY; THE COLORS ARE BRIGHT, AND ALL THESE SCENES REPRESENT SOMETHING OF HER LIFE AS A YOUNG GIRL ON A FARM, IN SASKATCHEWAN, AND HOW HARD IT MUST HAVE BEEN. THERE IS A LOT OF FEELING IN EACH ONE OF HER PAINTINGS. MANY OF THEM WE’LL NEVER KNOW THE STORIES, BUT THEY’RE ALL COUCHED IN STORIES. I HAD NO IDEA EITHER, UNTIL JUST NOW, HOW PROLIFIC SHE WAS; HOW MANY PAINTINGS SHE MUST HAVE DONE. I THINK IT WAS A CATHARSIS FOR HER, BUT ALSO REPRESENTATIVE OF THEIR LIVES, GROWING UP ON A FARM IN SASKATCHEWAN—THE ISOLATION, THE COLD, THE STRIFE AMONGST THE FAMILY, THE DIFFICULTY OF HER PARENTS HOLDING A MARRIAGE TOGETHER, AND THEIR DESPERATION, WITH SEVEN KIDS, TO GET OFF THE FARM AND GET OUT OF THERE, AND MAKE SOMETHING. IT’S A HERITAGE – HER PAINTINGS, AS ARE THESE HERE. YOU JUST LOOK AT THEM AND WONDER HOW IT IS THAT AN ARTIST CAN VISUALIZE THIS, AND PUT SO MUCH FEELING INTO EACH PIECE. THE LIGHT, THE FACIAL EXPRESSION, THE SUGGESTION OF A LINE, SOMETHING SIMPLE…SOMEBODY JUST [DAUBED] THE PAINT ON THERE, GLOBS THE YELLOW OF THE TREES. THERE’S SOMETHING THERE THAT—IT’S A HERITAGE. I [HEARD IN A MOVIE] ART IS THE TRUTH THAT WE HAVE EXISTED. THESE PEOPLE EXISTED. MOM, THE LIFE THEY HAD, WILL BE FORGOTTEN, BUT IT WAS THERE. NOW, AS OUR SUCCEEDING GENERATIONS, WE HAVE THE LIFE WE HAVE BECAUSE OF WHAT THEY WENT THROUGH. THE RICHNESS OF THEIR LIFE, WE CAN NEVER REPAY IT, BUT WE CAN HOPE TO PROFIT FROM IT.” FLAIG ELABORATED ON HIS PARENTS’ AVID INTEREST IN LOCAL ART, NOTING, “I KNOW [MY PARENTS] WOULD GO OUT, AND DO THE ART ELSEWHERE, OR SOME AT HOME. IT JUST SEEMED NATURAL THAT THEY WOULD DEAL WITH THEIR ARTIST FRIENDS…MOM AND DAD ALWAYS HAD ART IN THE HOUSE. THEY WERE ALWAYS DOING ART. I REMEMBER DAD DOING LARGE PLASTER SCULPTURES, IN THE BASEMENT, IN THE CITY, AND MOM WAS ALWAYS PAINTING AND THROWING POTS, AND DOING SOMETHING FUNNY OUT IN THE BACK YARD, ART-WISE…I HAVE A LARGE NUMBER OF MY MOTHER’S PAINTINGS, BUT THERE ARE LOTS OF THOSE AROUND THE CITY, AND HER WORK IS WELL PRESERVED.” FOR MORE INFORMATION INCLUDING THE FULL INTERVIEW TRANSCRIPTION, PLEASE SEE THE PERMANENT FILE P20190006001-GA.
Catalogue Number
P20020006002
Acquisition Date
2002-07
Collection
Museum
Images
Less detail
Other Name
BEDTIME STORY
Date Range From
1990
Date Range To
2000
Material Type
Artifact
Materials
MASONITE
Catalogue Number
P20020006003
  1 image  
Material Type
Artifact
Other Name
BEDTIME STORY
Date Range From
1990
Date Range To
2000
Materials
MASONITE
No. Pieces
1
Height
0.3
Length
60.5
Width
60.0
Description
UNFRAMED; NAIVE STYLE OF PAINTING. PICTURES A WOMAN SITTING ON A BED WITH AN OPEN BOOK IN HER HANDS. BEHIND HER A SMALL CHILD IN RED IS COMBING HER HAIR, AND 3 OTHER CHILDREN ARE IN THE BED. THERE IS ALSO A CHAIR IN THE BACKGROUND AND A PICTURE ON THE WALL OF 2 SAILBOATS. IN BOTTOM RIGHT HAND CORNER IS ARTIST'S SIGNATURE, "H FLAIG". WRITTEN ON BACK OF PAINTING, IN RED FELT PEN, IS "HELEN FLAIG 551-3-133 LETHBRIDGE ALTA. T1J 4B3 327 9791".
Subjects
ART
Historical Association
FINE ARTS
History
PAINTED BY DONOR, HELEN FLAIG (1929 - 2015), AS PART OF HER "CHILDHOOD IN THE 30S" SERIES. PAINTING WAS INSPIRED BY ARTIST'S MEMORY OF LIFE ON THE PRAIRIES. "OUR MOTHER LOVED THE STORIES AS MUCH AS WE DID. BOTH PARENTS LOVED TO READ". FLAIG'S FATHER, LEWIS ALEXANDER HUMMASON, LEFT ONTARIO IN 1905 TO TAKE HIS SICK BROTHER'S PLACE TO GO HOMESTEADING IN SASKATCHEWAN. HER MOTHER, ESTELLA MARY STUBBS, WAS 8 YEARS YOUNGER THEN HER FATHER; SHE HAD COME WEST WITH HER PARENTS AND HER SISTER TO CALGARY; ESTELLA'S FATHER WAS A CARPENTER. ESTELLA BECAME A SCHOOL TEACHER AND IN THAT ROLE SHE TOOK A POSITION IN LOCKWOOD, SK. THE GREAT FLU CLOSED THE SCHOOL AND SHE BECAME A NURSE. FLAIG'S FATHER BECAME A HANDY MAN HELPING THE SICK, AND IN THIS WAY MET HIS WIFE. THERE WERE 8 CHILDREN IN DONOR'S FAMILY, HELEN WAS THE SEVENTH, BORN ON THE FARM IN LOCKWOOD IN 1929. HELEN'S YOUNGER SISTER BLANCHE DIED WHEN SHE WAS NEARLY NINE - THE PAINTINGS IN THIS SERIES REFERENCE THE TIMES WHEN SHE AND BLANCHE PLAYED TOGETHER. SHE STARTED THE "CHILDHOOD IN THE 30S" PAINTINGS IN 1994 AS A WAY TO BRING SOME CHEER INTO HER OLDER SISTER FERN'S LIFE, WHO WAS IN A COMA AT THE TIME. HELEN'S HUSBAND LLOYD FLAIG WAS RAISED IN ALBERTA. SHE AND LLOYD MET IN 1949 WHILE WORKING AT THE PSYCHIATRIC HOSPITAL IN NORTH BATTLEFORD, SK. THEY MOVED TO CALGARY WHERE LLOYD DECIDED TO BECOME A SCHOOL TEACHER AND HIS FIRST POSITION WAS IN LETHBRIDGE IN 1955. HELEN HAS ALWAYS BEEN INTERESTED IN DRAWING AND JOINED THE LETHBRIDGE SKETCH CLUB IN 1955. HELEN STARTED POTTERY CLASSES IN 1964 WITH THE OLDMAN RIVER POTTERS GUILD AND CONTINUED WITH THEM TO THE PRESENT DAY. SHE AND LLOYD MOVED TO THEIR ACREAGE IN 1974, BUT SHE HAS CONTINUED TO TAKE COURSES, ESPECIALLY FIGURATIVE WORK AT BOWMAN ART'S CENTER, THE COMMUNITY COLLEGE, UNIVERSITY OF LETHBRIDGE, AND AT RED DEER COLLEGE. *UPDATE* IN 2014 COLLECTIONS ASSISTANT JANE EDMUNDSON CONDUCTED A SURVEY OF ART OBJECTS. SHE FOUND THE FOLLOWING DESCRIPTION OF HELEN FLAIG'S 'CHILDHOOD IN THE 1930S' SERIES IN THE BROCHURE PRODUCED BY THE RED DEER AND DISTRICT MUSEUM FOR THE 1997 EXHIBITION OF FLAIG'S WORK, WRITTEN BY EXHIBITS COORDINATOR DIANA ANDERSON: "THIS SERIES OF 20 PAINTINGS RETURNS HELEN TO HER CHILDHOOD DAYS OF GROWING UP ON A FARM IN RURAL SASKATCHEWAN... HELEN CHOOSES THE THINGS THAT MEANT SOMETHING TO HER. SHE STARTED WITH GRASSES AND VEGETABLES AND HER OWN CHILDREN, ORDINARY THINGS THAT SURROUNDED HER... HELEN IS INTERSTED IN THE MOOD OF THE PAINTINGS MORE THAN THE ACCURACY OF THE IMAGE. HER PERSONAL VISION AND FRESHNESS OF CONCEPT GIVE THIS SERIES ITS VISUAL IMPACT THROUGH THE USE OF NAIVE PAINTING... NAIVE PAINTING CAN BE DESCRIBED AS A TYPE OF PAINTING THAT IS UNSOPHISTICATED, CHILDLIKE, SIMPLE OR UNWORLDLY... IN HELEN'S CASE, THIS IS IMPLY A STYLE THAT SHE CHOSE TO BETTER EXPRESS HER SUBJECT MATTER, AS IT CAPTURES MOST CLOSELY THE FLAVOUR SHE WANTED TO GIVE OF THE 1930S... THE PAINTINGS SHOW AN OPEN, HONEST APPROACH TO THE SUBJECT AND EACH PAINTING HOLDS SPECIAL MEANING FOR HELEN." FOR A COPY OF THE BROCHURE AND FURTHER BIOGRAPHICAL INFORMATION ON THE ARTIST, SEE PERMANENT FILE P20020006001. *UPDATE* ON MARCH 5, 2019, COLLECTIONS TECHNICIAN KEVIN MACLEAN INTERVIEWED DON FLAIG REGARDING HIS DONATION OF ARTWORKS COLLECTED BY HIS PARENTS, HELEN AND LLOYD FLAIG. IN HIS INTERVIEW, DON FLAIG SPOKE ABOUT HIS MOTHER'S, HELEN FLAIG'S, ART PRACTICE. ON HIS MOTHER’S PAINTINGS AND PRACTICE, DON FLAIG ELABORATED, “I LEARNED LATER, THAT [MY MOTHER’S LOVE OF ART] WAS BORN OUT OF HER DESIRE TO BRING ART TO HER SISTER, FERN, WHO HAD A BRAIN ANEURYSM WHEN SHE WAS ABOUT FIFTEEN YEARS OLD. [FERN] SPENT MANY YEARS IN HOSPITAL IN LABRECQUE, IN SASKATCHEWAN, BUT [MOM] NEVER GOT THERE; NEVER GOT THE PAINTINGS OUT THERE. THE ART WORK IS, IN SOME WAYS, CRUDE. THERE ARE NO SHADOWS; THE PEOPLE ARE KIND OF LUMPY; THE COLORS ARE BRIGHT, AND ALL THESE SCENES REPRESENT SOMETHING OF HER LIFE AS A YOUNG GIRL ON A FARM, IN SASKATCHEWAN, AND HOW HARD IT MUST HAVE BEEN. THERE IS A LOT OF FEELING IN EACH ONE OF HER PAINTINGS. MANY OF THEM WE’LL NEVER KNOW THE STORIES, BUT THEY’RE ALL COUCHED IN STORIES. I HAD NO IDEA EITHER, UNTIL JUST NOW, HOW PROLIFIC SHE WAS; HOW MANY PAINTINGS SHE MUST HAVE DONE. I THINK IT WAS A CATHARSIS FOR HER, BUT ALSO REPRESENTATIVE OF THEIR LIVES, GROWING UP ON A FARM IN SASKATCHEWAN—THE ISOLATION, THE COLD, THE STRIFE AMONGST THE FAMILY, THE DIFFICULTY OF HER PARENTS HOLDING A MARRIAGE TOGETHER, AND THEIR DESPERATION, WITH SEVEN KIDS, TO GET OFF THE FARM AND GET OUT OF THERE, AND MAKE SOMETHING. IT’S A HERITAGE – HER PAINTINGS, AS ARE THESE HERE. YOU JUST LOOK AT THEM AND WONDER HOW IT IS THAT AN ARTIST CAN VISUALIZE THIS, AND PUT SO MUCH FEELING INTO EACH PIECE. THE LIGHT, THE FACIAL EXPRESSION, THE SUGGESTION OF A LINE, SOMETHING SIMPLE…SOMEBODY JUST [DAUBED] THE PAINT ON THERE, GLOBS THE YELLOW OF THE TREES. THERE’S SOMETHING THERE THAT—IT’S A HERITAGE. I [HEARD IN A MOVIE] ART IS THE TRUTH THAT WE HAVE EXISTED. THESE PEOPLE EXISTED. MOM, THE LIFE THEY HAD, WILL BE FORGOTTEN, BUT IT WAS THERE. NOW, AS OUR SUCCEEDING GENERATIONS, WE HAVE THE LIFE WE HAVE BECAUSE OF WHAT THEY WENT THROUGH. THE RICHNESS OF THEIR LIFE, WE CAN NEVER REPAY IT, BUT WE CAN HOPE TO PROFIT FROM IT.” FLAIG ELABORATED ON HIS PARENTS’ AVID INTEREST IN LOCAL ART, NOTING, “I KNOW [MY PARENTS] WOULD GO OUT, AND DO THE ART ELSEWHERE, OR SOME AT HOME. IT JUST SEEMED NATURAL THAT THEY WOULD DEAL WITH THEIR ARTIST FRIENDS…MOM AND DAD ALWAYS HAD ART IN THE HOUSE. THEY WERE ALWAYS DOING ART. I REMEMBER DAD DOING LARGE PLASTER SCULPTURES, IN THE BASEMENT, IN THE CITY, AND MOM WAS ALWAYS PAINTING AND THROWING POTS, AND DOING SOMETHING FUNNY OUT IN THE BACK YARD, ART-WISE…I HAVE A LARGE NUMBER OF MY MOTHER’S PAINTINGS, BUT THERE ARE LOTS OF THOSE AROUND THE CITY, AND HER WORK IS WELL PRESERVED.” FOR MORE INFORMATION INCLUDING THE FULL INTERVIEW TRANSCRIPTION, PLEASE SEE THE PERMANENT FILE P20190006001-GA.
Catalogue Number
P20020006003
Acquisition Date
2002-07
Collection
Museum
Images
Less detail
Other Name
"WATER FIGHT"
Date Range From
1990
Date Range To
2000
Material Type
Artifact
Materials
MASONITE, WOOD, PAPER
Catalogue Number
P20020006007
  1 image  
Material Type
Artifact
Other Name
"WATER FIGHT"
Date Range From
1990
Date Range To
2000
Materials
MASONITE, WOOD, PAPER
No. Pieces
1
Height
1.8
Length
64.5
Width
64.1
Description
PAINTING DONE IN NAIVE STYLE. FRAMED IN A VARNISHED WOOD FRAME. PICTURES THREE CHILDREN IN BLACK BATHING SUITS. THEY ARE IN FRONT OF A BARN, WITH A WATER TROUGH IN FRONT, AND A COW DRINKING FROM IT. THERE IS A DOG IN THE LOWER RIGHT HAND CORNER OF PAINTING. BOTTOM RIGHT HAND CORNER ALSO HAS ARTIST'S SIGNATURE "H FLAIG". PAINTING HAS BROWN PAPER BACKING. ON PAPER READS "WATER FIGHT H. FLAIG 3279791". ALSO HAS A WIRE FOR HANGING.
Subjects
ART
Historical Association
FINE ARTS
History
PAINTED BY DONOR, HELEN FLAIG (1929 - 2015), AS PART OF HER "CHILDHOOD IN THE 30S" SERIES. PAINTING WAS INSPIRED BY ARTIST'S MEMORY OF LIFE ON THE PRAIRIES. "OUR BLACK WOOL SWIM SUITS OFTEN HAD MOTH HOLES. THE ICY COLD WATER FROM THE WELL MADE US SCREAM". FLAIG'S FATHER, LEWIS ALEXANDER HUMMASON, LEFT ONTARIO IN 1905 TO TAKE HIS SICK BROTHER'S PLACE TO GO HOMESTEADING IN SASKATCHEWAN. HER MOTHER, ESTELLA MARY STUBBS, WAS 8 YEARS YOUNGER THEN HER FATHER; SHE HAD COME WEST WITH HER PARENTS AND HER SISTER TO CALGARY; ESTELLA'S FATHER WAS A CARPENTER. ESTELLA BECAME A SCHOOL TEACHER AND IN THAT ROLE SHE TOOK A POSITION IN LOCKWOOD, SK. THE GREAT FLU CLOSED THE SCHOOL AND SHE BECAME A NURSE. FLAIG'S FATHER BECAME A HANDY MAN HELPING THE SICK, AND IN THIS WAY MET HIS WIFE. THERE WERE 8 CHILDREN IN DONOR'S FAMILY, HELEN WAS THE SEVENTH, BORN ON THE FARM IN LOCKWOOD IN 1929. HELEN'S YOUNGER SISTER BLANCHE DIED WHEN SHE WAS NEARLY NINE - THE PAINTINGS IN THIS SERIES REFERENCE THE TIMES WHEN SHE AND BLANCHE PLAYED TOGETHER. SHE STARTED THE "CHILDHOOD IN THE 30S" PAINTINGS IN 1994 AS A WAY TO BRING SOME CHEER INTO HER OLDER SISTER FERN'S LIFE, WHO WAS IN A COMA AT THE TIME. HELEN'S HUSBAND LLOYD FLAIG WAS RAISED IN ALBERTA. SHE AND LLOYD MET IN 1949 WHILE WORKING AT THE PSYCHIATRIC HOSPITAL IN NORTH BATTLEFORD, SK. THEY MOVED TO CALGARY WHERE LLOYD DECIDED TO BECOME A SCHOOL TEACHER AND HIS FIRST POSITION WAS IN LETHBRIDGE IN 1955. HELEN HAS ALWAYS BEEN INTERESTED IN DRAWING AND JOINED THE LETHBRIDGE SKETCH CLUB IN 1955. HELEN STARTED POTTERY CLASSES IN 1964 WITH THE OLDMAN RIVER POTTERS GUILD AND CONTINUED WITH THEM TO THE PRESENT DAY. SHE AND LLOYD MOVED TO THEIR ACREAGE IN 1974, BUT SHE HAS CONTINUED TO TAKE COURSES, ESPECIALLY FIGURATIVE WORK AT BOWMAN ART'S CENTER, THE COMMUNITY COLLEGE, UNIVERSITY OF LETHBRIDGE, AND AT RED DEER COLLEGE. *UPDATE* IN 2014 COLLECTIONS ASSISTANT JANE EDMUNDSON CONDUCTED A SURVEY OF ART OBJECTS. SHE FOUND THE FOLLOWING DESCRIPTION OF HELEN FLAIG'S 'CHILDHOOD IN THE 1930S' SERIES IN THE BROCHURE PRODUCED BY THE RED DEER AND DISTRICT MUSEUM FOR THE 1997 EXHIBITION OF FLAIG'S WORK, WRITTEN BY EXHIBITS COORDINATOR DIANA ANDERSON: "THIS SERIES OF 20 PAINTINGS RETURNS HELEN TO HER CHILDHOOD DAYS OF GROWING UP ON A FARM IN RURAL SASKATCHEWAN... HELEN CHOOSES THE THINGS THAT MEANT SOMETHING TO HER. SHE STARTED WITH GRASSES AND VEGETABLES AND HER OWN CHILDREN, ORDINARY THINGS THAT SURROUNDED HER... HELEN IS INTERSTED IN THE MOOD OF THE PAINTINGS MORE THAN THE ACCURACY OF THE IMAGE. HER PERSONAL VISION AND FRESHNESS OF CONCEPT GIVE THIS SERIES ITS VISUAL IMPACT THROUGH THE USE OF NAIVE PAINTING... NAIVE PAINTING CAN BE DESCRIBED AS A TYPE OF PAINTING THAT IS UNSOPHISTICATED, CHILDLIKE, SIMPLE OR UNWORLDLY... IN HELEN'S CASE, THIS IS IMPLY A STYLE THAT SHE CHOSE TO BETTER EXPRESS HER SUBJECT MATTER, AS IT CAPTURES MOST CLOSELY THE FLAVOUR SHE WANTED TO GIVE OF THE 1930S... THE PAINTINGS SHOW AN OPEN, HONEST APPROACH TO THE SUBJECT AND EACH PAINTING HOLDS SPECIAL MEANING FOR HELEN." FOR A COPY OF THE BROCHURE AND FURTHER BIOGRAPHICAL INFORMATION ON THE ARTIST, SEE PERMANENT FILE P20020006001. *UPDATE* ON MARCH 5, 2019, COLLECTIONS TECHNICIAN KEVIN MACLEAN INTERVIEWED DON FLAIG REGARDING HIS DONATION OF ARTWORKS COLLECTED BY HIS PARENTS, HELEN AND LLOYD FLAIG. IN HIS INTERVIEW, DON FLAIG SPOKE ABOUT HIS MOTHER'S, HELEN FLAIG'S, ART PRACTICE. ON HIS MOTHER’S PAINTINGS AND PRACTICE, DON FLAIG ELABORATED, “I LEARNED LATER, THAT [MY MOTHER’S LOVE OF ART] WAS BORN OUT OF HER DESIRE TO BRING ART TO HER SISTER, FERN, WHO HAD A BRAIN ANEURYSM WHEN SHE WAS ABOUT FIFTEEN YEARS OLD. [FERN] SPENT MANY YEARS IN HOSPITAL IN LABRECQUE, IN SASKATCHEWAN, BUT [MOM] NEVER GOT THERE; NEVER GOT THE PAINTINGS OUT THERE. THE ART WORK IS, IN SOME WAYS, CRUDE. THERE ARE NO SHADOWS; THE PEOPLE ARE KIND OF LUMPY; THE COLORS ARE BRIGHT, AND ALL THESE SCENES REPRESENT SOMETHING OF HER LIFE AS A YOUNG GIRL ON A FARM, IN SASKATCHEWAN, AND HOW HARD IT MUST HAVE BEEN. THERE IS A LOT OF FEELING IN EACH ONE OF HER PAINTINGS. MANY OF THEM WE’LL NEVER KNOW THE STORIES, BUT THEY’RE ALL COUCHED IN STORIES. I HAD NO IDEA EITHER, UNTIL JUST NOW, HOW PROLIFIC SHE WAS; HOW MANY PAINTINGS SHE MUST HAVE DONE. I THINK IT WAS A CATHARSIS FOR HER, BUT ALSO REPRESENTATIVE OF THEIR LIVES, GROWING UP ON A FARM IN SASKATCHEWAN—THE ISOLATION, THE COLD, THE STRIFE AMONGST THE FAMILY, THE DIFFICULTY OF HER PARENTS HOLDING A MARRIAGE TOGETHER, AND THEIR DESPERATION, WITH SEVEN KIDS, TO GET OFF THE FARM AND GET OUT OF THERE, AND MAKE SOMETHING. IT’S A HERITAGE – HER PAINTINGS, AS ARE THESE HERE. YOU JUST LOOK AT THEM AND WONDER HOW IT IS THAT AN ARTIST CAN VISUALIZE THIS, AND PUT SO MUCH FEELING INTO EACH PIECE. THE LIGHT, THE FACIAL EXPRESSION, THE SUGGESTION OF A LINE, SOMETHING SIMPLE…SOMEBODY JUST [DAUBED] THE PAINT ON THERE, GLOBS THE YELLOW OF THE TREES. THERE’S SOMETHING THERE THAT—IT’S A HERITAGE. I [HEARD IN A MOVIE] ART IS THE TRUTH THAT WE HAVE EXISTED. THESE PEOPLE EXISTED. MOM, THE LIFE THEY HAD, WILL BE FORGOTTEN, BUT IT WAS THERE. NOW, AS OUR SUCCEEDING GENERATIONS, WE HAVE THE LIFE WE HAVE BECAUSE OF WHAT THEY WENT THROUGH. THE RICHNESS OF THEIR LIFE, WE CAN NEVER REPAY IT, BUT WE CAN HOPE TO PROFIT FROM IT.” FLAIG ELABORATED ON HIS PARENTS’ AVID INTEREST IN LOCAL ART, NOTING, “I KNOW [MY PARENTS] WOULD GO OUT, AND DO THE ART ELSEWHERE, OR SOME AT HOME. IT JUST SEEMED NATURAL THAT THEY WOULD DEAL WITH THEIR ARTIST FRIENDS…MOM AND DAD ALWAYS HAD ART IN THE HOUSE. THEY WERE ALWAYS DOING ART. I REMEMBER DAD DOING LARGE PLASTER SCULPTURES, IN THE BASEMENT, IN THE CITY, AND MOM WAS ALWAYS PAINTING AND THROWING POTS, AND DOING SOMETHING FUNNY OUT IN THE BACK YARD, ART-WISE…I HAVE A LARGE NUMBER OF MY MOTHER’S PAINTINGS, BUT THERE ARE LOTS OF THOSE AROUND THE CITY, AND HER WORK IS WELL PRESERVED.” FOR MORE INFORMATION INCLUDING THE FULL INTERVIEW TRANSCRIPTION, PLEASE SEE THE PERMANENT FILE P20190006001-GA.
Catalogue Number
P20020006007
Acquisition Date
2002-07
Collection
Museum
Images
Less detail
Other Name
MAKING A KITE
Date Range From
1990
Date Range To
2000
Material Type
Artifact
Materials
CANVAS, WOOD
Catalogue Number
P20020006010
  1 image  
Material Type
Artifact
Other Name
MAKING A KITE
Date Range From
1990
Date Range To
2000
Materials
CANVAS, WOOD
No. Pieces
1
Height
2.6
Length
82.0
Width
68.1
Description
HAS A WOOD FRAME, WITH CLEAR VARNISH; NAIVE STYLE OF PAINTING. PICTURES A MAN KNEELING WITH A KITE IN HIS HANDS, AND 2 CHILDREN WATCHING HIM. IN THE BACKGROUND IS A FARMYARD SCENE, INCLUDING A TRACTOR, CHICKENS, A DOG, A BARN, AND FENCES. IN BOTTOM RIGHT HAND CORNER IS ARTIST'S SIGNATURE "H FLAIG". PAINTING HAS A CARDBOARD BACKING AND A WIRE FOR HANGING. *NOTE* FRAME HAD COME LOOSE FROM PAINTING, AND WAS REATTACHED IN DEC. 2015
Subjects
ART
Historical Association
FINE ARTS
History
PAINTED BY DONOR, HELEN FLAIG (1929 - 2015), AS PART OF HER "CHILDHOOD IN THE 30S" SERIES. PAINTING WAS INSPIRED BY ARTIST'S MEMORY OF LIFE ON THE PRAIRIES. "OUR FATHER WAS 35 WHEN HE MARRIED AND COULD BE VERY STERN BUT HE LIKED US TO HAVE FUN. ONCE HE MADE A TENNIS COURT FOR THE OLDER GIRLS". FLAIG'S FATHER, LEWIS ALEXANDER HUMMASON, LEFT ONTARIO IN 1905 TO TAKE HIS SICK BROTHER'S PLACE TO GO HOMESTEADING IN SASKATCHEWAN. HER MOTHER, ESTELLA MARY STUBBS, WAS 8 YEARS YOUNGER THEN HER FATHER; SHE HAD COME WEST WITH HER PARENTS AND HER SISTER TO CALGARY; ESTELLA'S FATHER WAS A CARPENTER. ESTELLA BECAME A SCHOOL TEACHER AND IN THAT ROLE SHE TOOK A POSITION IN LOCKWOOD, SK. THE GREAT FLU CLOSED THE SCHOOL AND SHE BECAME A NURSE. FLAIG'S FATHER BECAME A HANDY MAN HELPING THE SICK, AND IN THIS WAY MET HIS WIFE. THERE WERE 8 CHILDREN IN DONOR'S FAMILY, HELEN WAS THE SEVENTH, BORN ON THE FARM IN LOCKWOOD IN 1929. HELEN'S YOUNGER SISTER BLANCHE DIED WHEN SHE WAS NEARLY NINE - THE PAINTINGS IN THIS SERIES REFERENCE THE TIMES WHEN SHE AND BLANCHE PLAYED TOGETHER. SHE STARTED THE "CHILDHOOD IN THE 30S" PAINTINGS IN 1994 AS A WAY TO BRING SOME CHEER INTO HER OLDER SISTER FERN'S LIFE, WHO WAS IN A COMA AT THE TIME. HELEN'S HUSBAND LLOYD FLAIG WAS RAISED IN ALBERTA. SHE AND LLOYD MET IN 1949 WHILE WORKING AT THE PSYCHIATRIC HOSPITAL IN NORTH BATTLEFORD, SK. THEY MOVED TO CALGARY WHERE LLOYD DECIDED TO BECOME A SCHOOL TEACHER AND HIS FIRST POSITION WAS IN LETHBRIDGE IN 1955. HELEN HAS ALWAYS BEEN INTERESTED IN DRAWING AND JOINED THE LETHBRIDGE SKETCH CLUB IN 1955. HELEN STARTED POTTERY CLASSES IN 1964 WITH THE OLDMAN RIVER POTTERS GUILD AND CONTINUED WITH THEM TO THE PRESENT DAY. SHE AND LLOYD MOVED TO THEIR ACREAGE IN 1974, BUT SHE HAS CONTINUED TO TAKE COURSES, ESPECIALLY FIGURATIVE WORK AT BOWMAN ART'S CENTER, THE COMMUNITY COLLEGE, UNIVERSITY OF LETHBRIDGE, AND AT RED DEER COLLEGE. *UPDATE* IN 2014 COLLECTIONS ASSISTANT JANE EDMUNDSON CONDUCTED A SURVEY OF ART OBJECTS. SHE FOUND THE FOLLOWING DESCRIPTION OF HELEN FLAIG'S 'CHILDHOOD IN THE 1930S' SERIES IN THE BROCHURE PRODUCED BY THE RED DEER AND DISTRICT MUSEUM FOR THE 1997 EXHIBITION OF FLAIG'S WORK, WRITTEN BY EXHIBITS COORDINATOR DIANA ANDERSON: "THIS SERIES OF 20 PAINTINGS RETURNS HELEN TO HER CHILDHOOD DAYS OF GROWING UP ON A FARM IN RURAL SASKATCHEWAN... HELEN CHOOSES THE THINGS THAT MEANT SOMETHING TO HER. SHE STARTED WITH GRASSES AND VEGETABLES AND HER OWN CHILDREN, ORDINARY THINGS THAT SURROUNDED HER... HELEN IS INTERSTED IN THE MOOD OF THE PAINTINGS MORE THAN THE ACCURACY OF THE IMAGE. HER PERSONAL VISION AND FRESHNESS OF CONCEPT GIVE THIS SERIES ITS VISUAL IMPACT THROUGH THE USE OF NAIVE PAINTING... NAIVE PAINTING CAN BE DESCRIBED AS A TYPE OF PAINTING THAT IS UNSOPHISTICATED, CHILDLIKE, SIMPLE OR UNWORLDLY... IN HELEN'S CASE, THIS IS IMPLY A STYLE THAT SHE CHOSE TO BETTER EXPRESS HER SUBJECT MATTER, AS IT CAPTURES MOST CLOSELY THE FLAVOUR SHE WANTED TO GIVE OF THE 1930S... THE PAINTINGS SHOW AN OPEN, HONEST APPROACH TO THE SUBJECT AND EACH PAINTING HOLDS SPECIAL MEANING FOR HELEN." FOR A COPY OF THE BROCHURE AND FURTHER BIOGRAPHICAL INFORMATION ON THE ARTIST, SEE PERMANENT FILE P20020006001. *UPDATE* ON MARCH 5, 2019, COLLECTIONS TECHNICIAN KEVIN MACLEAN INTERVIEWED DON FLAIG REGARDING HIS DONATION OF ARTWORKS COLLECTED BY HIS PARENTS, HELEN AND LLOYD FLAIG. IN HIS INTERVIEW, DON FLAIG SPOKE ABOUT HIS MOTHER'S, HELEN FLAIG'S, ART PRACTICE. ON HIS MOTHER’S PAINTINGS AND PRACTICE, DON FLAIG ELABORATED, “I LEARNED LATER, THAT [MY MOTHER’S LOVE OF ART] WAS BORN OUT OF HER DESIRE TO BRING ART TO HER SISTER, FERN, WHO HAD A BRAIN ANEURYSM WHEN SHE WAS ABOUT FIFTEEN YEARS OLD. [FERN] SPENT MANY YEARS IN HOSPITAL IN LABRECQUE, IN SASKATCHEWAN, BUT [MOM] NEVER GOT THERE; NEVER GOT THE PAINTINGS OUT THERE. THE ART WORK IS, IN SOME WAYS, CRUDE. THERE ARE NO SHADOWS; THE PEOPLE ARE KIND OF LUMPY; THE COLORS ARE BRIGHT, AND ALL THESE SCENES REPRESENT SOMETHING OF HER LIFE AS A YOUNG GIRL ON A FARM, IN SASKATCHEWAN, AND HOW HARD IT MUST HAVE BEEN. THERE IS A LOT OF FEELING IN EACH ONE OF HER PAINTINGS. MANY OF THEM WE’LL NEVER KNOW THE STORIES, BUT THEY’RE ALL COUCHED IN STORIES. I HAD NO IDEA EITHER, UNTIL JUST NOW, HOW PROLIFIC SHE WAS; HOW MANY PAINTINGS SHE MUST HAVE DONE. I THINK IT WAS A CATHARSIS FOR HER, BUT ALSO REPRESENTATIVE OF THEIR LIVES, GROWING UP ON A FARM IN SASKATCHEWAN—THE ISOLATION, THE COLD, THE STRIFE AMONGST THE FAMILY, THE DIFFICULTY OF HER PARENTS HOLDING A MARRIAGE TOGETHER, AND THEIR DESPERATION, WITH SEVEN KIDS, TO GET OFF THE FARM AND GET OUT OF THERE, AND MAKE SOMETHING. IT’S A HERITAGE – HER PAINTINGS, AS ARE THESE HERE. YOU JUST LOOK AT THEM AND WONDER HOW IT IS THAT AN ARTIST CAN VISUALIZE THIS, AND PUT SO MUCH FEELING INTO EACH PIECE. THE LIGHT, THE FACIAL EXPRESSION, THE SUGGESTION OF A LINE, SOMETHING SIMPLE…SOMEBODY JUST [DAUBED] THE PAINT ON THERE, GLOBS THE YELLOW OF THE TREES. THERE’S SOMETHING THERE THAT—IT’S A HERITAGE. I [HEARD IN A MOVIE] ART IS THE TRUTH THAT WE HAVE EXISTED. THESE PEOPLE EXISTED. MOM, THE LIFE THEY HAD, WILL BE FORGOTTEN, BUT IT WAS THERE. NOW, AS OUR SUCCEEDING GENERATIONS, WE HAVE THE LIFE WE HAVE BECAUSE OF WHAT THEY WENT THROUGH. THE RICHNESS OF THEIR LIFE, WE CAN NEVER REPAY IT, BUT WE CAN HOPE TO PROFIT FROM IT.” FLAIG ELABORATED ON HIS PARENTS’ AVID INTEREST IN LOCAL ART, NOTING, “I KNOW [MY PARENTS] WOULD GO OUT, AND DO THE ART ELSEWHERE, OR SOME AT HOME. IT JUST SEEMED NATURAL THAT THEY WOULD DEAL WITH THEIR ARTIST FRIENDS…MOM AND DAD ALWAYS HAD ART IN THE HOUSE. THEY WERE ALWAYS DOING ART. I REMEMBER DAD DOING LARGE PLASTER SCULPTURES, IN THE BASEMENT, IN THE CITY, AND MOM WAS ALWAYS PAINTING AND THROWING POTS, AND DOING SOMETHING FUNNY OUT IN THE BACK YARD, ART-WISE…I HAVE A LARGE NUMBER OF MY MOTHER’S PAINTINGS, BUT THERE ARE LOTS OF THOSE AROUND THE CITY, AND HER WORK IS WELL PRESERVED.” FOR MORE INFORMATION INCLUDING THE FULL INTERVIEW TRANSCRIPTION, PLEASE SEE THE PERMANENT FILE P20190006001-GA.
Catalogue Number
P20020006010
Acquisition Date
2002-07
Collection
Museum
Images
Less detail
Other Name
"FALL DAY"
Date Range From
1990
Date Range To
2000
Material Type
Artifact
Materials
WOOD, MASONITE
Catalogue Number
P20020006011
  1 image  
Material Type
Artifact
Other Name
"FALL DAY"
Date Range From
1990
Date Range To
2000
Materials
WOOD, MASONITE
No. Pieces
1
Height
2.0
Length
63.5
Width
42.4
Description
OIL ON MASONITE; NAIVE STYLE OF PAINTING. HAS A VARNISHED WOOD FRAME. PAINTING IS OF A MAN AND CHILD WITH THEIR HANDS IN A LARGE WOODEN TROUGH FULL OF GRAIN? (ORANGE). ANOTHER MAN IS SITTING ON EDGE OF TROUGH. IN BOTTOM RIGHT HAND CORNER IS ARTIST'S SIGNATURE "H FLAIG". BACK OF PAINTING HAS A LABEL ON IT THAT READS "FALL DAY $150.00"; ALSO HAS A WIRE FOR HANGING.
Subjects
ART
Historical Association
FINE ARTS
History
PAINTED BY DONOR, HELEN FLAIG (1929 - 2015), AS PART OF HER "CHILDHOOD IN THE 30S" SERIES. PAINTING WAS INSPIRED BY ARTIST'S MEMORY OF LIFE ON THE PRAIRIES. "HAULING GRAIN (AND CHEWING SOME) TO THE ELEVATOR". FLAIG'S FATHER, LEWIS ALEXANDER HUMMASON, LEFT ONTARIO IN 1905 TO TAKE HIS SICK BROTHER'S PLACE TO GO HOMESTEADING IN SASKATCHEWAN. HER MOTHER, ESTELLA MARY STUBBS, WAS 8 YEARS YOUNGER THEN HER FATHER; SHE HAD COME WEST WITH HER PARENTS AND HER SISTER TO CALGARY; ESTELLA'S FATHER WAS A CARPENTER. ESTELLA BECAME A SCHOOL TEACHER AND IN THAT ROLE SHE TOOK A POSITION IN LOCKWOOD, SK. THE GREAT FLU CLOSED THE SCHOOL AND SHE BECAME A NURSE. FLAIG'S FATHER BECAME A HANDY MAN HELPING THE SICK, AND IN THIS WAY MET HIS WIFE. THERE WERE 8 CHILDREN IN DONOR'S FAMILY, HELEN WAS THE SEVENTH, BORN ON THE FARM IN LOCKWOOD IN 1929. HELEN'S YOUNGER SISTER BLANCHE DIED WHEN SHE WAS NEARLY NINE - THE PAINTINGS IN THIS SERIES REFERENCE THE TIMES WHEN SHE AND BLANCHE PLAYED TOGETHER. SHE STARTED THE "CHILDHOOD IN THE 30S" PAINTINGS IN 1994 AS A WAY TO BRING SOME CHEER INTO HER OLDER SISTER FERN'S LIFE, WHO WAS IN A COMA AT THE TIME. HELEN'S HUSBAND LLOYD FLAIG WAS RAISED IN ALBERTA. SHE AND LLOYD MET IN 1949 WHILE WORKING AT THE PSYCHIATRIC HOSPITAL IN NORTH BATTLEFORD, SK. THEY MOVED TO CALGARY WHERE LLOYD DECIDED TO BECOME A SCHOOL TEACHER AND HIS FIRST POSITION WAS IN LETHBRIDGE IN 1955. HELEN HAS ALWAYS BEEN INTERESTED IN DRAWING AND JOINED THE LETHBRIDGE SKETCH CLUB IN 1955. HELEN STARTED POTTERY CLASSES IN 1964 WITH THE OLDMAN RIVER POTTERS GUILD AND CONTINUED WITH THEM TO THE PRESENT DAY. SHE AND LLOYD MOVED TO THEIR ACREAGE IN 1974, BUT SHE HAS CONTINUED TO TAKE COURSES, ESPECIALLY FIGURATIVE WORK AT BOWMAN ART'S CENTER, THE COMMUNITY COLLEGE, UNIVERSITY OF LETHBRIDGE, AND AT RED DEER COLLEGE. *UPDATE* IN 2014 COLLECTIONS ASSISTANT JANE EDMUNDSON CONDUCTED A SURVEY OF ART OBJECTS. SHE FOUND THE FOLLOWING DESCRIPTION OF HELEN FLAIG'S 'CHILDHOOD IN THE 1930S' SERIES IN THE BROCHURE PRODUCED BY THE RED DEER AND DISTRICT MUSEUM FOR THE 1997 EXHIBITION OF FLAIG'S WORK, WRITTEN BY EXHIBITS COORDINATOR DIANA ANDERSON: "THIS SERIES OF 20 PAINTINGS RETURNS HELEN TO HER CHILDHOOD DAYS OF GROWING UP ON A FARM IN RURAL SASKATCHEWAN... HELEN CHOOSES THE THINGS THAT MEANT SOMETHING TO HER. SHE STARTED WITH GRASSES AND VEGETABLES AND HER OWN CHILDREN, ORDINARY THINGS THAT SURROUNDED HER... HELEN IS INTERSTED IN THE MOOD OF THE PAINTINGS MORE THAN THE ACCURACY OF THE IMAGE. HER PERSONAL VISION AND FRESHNESS OF CONCEPT GIVE THIS SERIES ITS VISUAL IMPACT THROUGH THE USE OF NAIVE PAINTING... NAIVE PAINTING CAN BE DESCRIBED AS A TYPE OF PAINTING THAT IS UNSOPHISTICATED, CHILDLIKE, SIMPLE OR UNWORLDLY... IN HELEN'S CASE, THIS IS IMPLY A STYLE THAT SHE CHOSE TO BETTER EXPRESS HER SUBJECT MATTER, AS IT CAPTURES MOST CLOSELY THE FLAVOUR SHE WANTED TO GIVE OF THE 1930S... THE PAINTINGS SHOW AN OPEN, HONEST APPROACH TO THE SUBJECT AND EACH PAINTING HOLDS SPECIAL MEANING FOR HELEN." FOR A COPY OF THE BROCHURE AND FURTHER BIOGRAPHICAL INFORMATION ON THE ARTIST, SEE PERMANENT FILE P20020006001. *UPDATE* ON MARCH 5, 2019, COLLECTIONS TECHNICIAN KEVIN MACLEAN INTERVIEWED DON FLAIG REGARDING HIS DONATION OF ARTWORKS COLLECTED BY HIS PARENTS, HELEN AND LLOYD FLAIG. IN HIS INTERVIEW, DON FLAIG SPOKE ABOUT HIS MOTHER'S, HELEN FLAIG'S, ART PRACTICE. ON HIS MOTHER’S PAINTINGS AND PRACTICE, DON FLAIG ELABORATED, “I LEARNED LATER, THAT [MY MOTHER’S LOVE OF ART] WAS BORN OUT OF HER DESIRE TO BRING ART TO HER SISTER, FERN, WHO HAD A BRAIN ANEURYSM WHEN SHE WAS ABOUT FIFTEEN YEARS OLD. [FERN] SPENT MANY YEARS IN HOSPITAL IN LABRECQUE, IN SASKATCHEWAN, BUT [MOM] NEVER GOT THERE; NEVER GOT THE PAINTINGS OUT THERE. THE ART WORK IS, IN SOME WAYS, CRUDE. THERE ARE NO SHADOWS; THE PEOPLE ARE KIND OF LUMPY; THE COLORS ARE BRIGHT, AND ALL THESE SCENES REPRESENT SOMETHING OF HER LIFE AS A YOUNG GIRL ON A FARM, IN SASKATCHEWAN, AND HOW HARD IT MUST HAVE BEEN. THERE IS A LOT OF FEELING IN EACH ONE OF HER PAINTINGS. MANY OF THEM WE’LL NEVER KNOW THE STORIES, BUT THEY’RE ALL COUCHED IN STORIES. I HAD NO IDEA EITHER, UNTIL JUST NOW, HOW PROLIFIC SHE WAS; HOW MANY PAINTINGS SHE MUST HAVE DONE. I THINK IT WAS A CATHARSIS FOR HER, BUT ALSO REPRESENTATIVE OF THEIR LIVES, GROWING UP ON A FARM IN SASKATCHEWAN—THE ISOLATION, THE COLD, THE STRIFE AMONGST THE FAMILY, THE DIFFICULTY OF HER PARENTS HOLDING A MARRIAGE TOGETHER, AND THEIR DESPERATION, WITH SEVEN KIDS, TO GET OFF THE FARM AND GET OUT OF THERE, AND MAKE SOMETHING. IT’S A HERITAGE – HER PAINTINGS, AS ARE THESE HERE. YOU JUST LOOK AT THEM AND WONDER HOW IT IS THAT AN ARTIST CAN VISUALIZE THIS, AND PUT SO MUCH FEELING INTO EACH PIECE. THE LIGHT, THE FACIAL EXPRESSION, THE SUGGESTION OF A LINE, SOMETHING SIMPLE…SOMEBODY JUST [DAUBED] THE PAINT ON THERE, GLOBS THE YELLOW OF THE TREES. THERE’S SOMETHING THERE THAT—IT’S A HERITAGE. I [HEARD IN A MOVIE] ART IS THE TRUTH THAT WE HAVE EXISTED. THESE PEOPLE EXISTED. MOM, THE LIFE THEY HAD, WILL BE FORGOTTEN, BUT IT WAS THERE. NOW, AS OUR SUCCEEDING GENERATIONS, WE HAVE THE LIFE WE HAVE BECAUSE OF WHAT THEY WENT THROUGH. THE RICHNESS OF THEIR LIFE, WE CAN NEVER REPAY IT, BUT WE CAN HOPE TO PROFIT FROM IT.” FLAIG ELABORATED ON HIS PARENTS’ AVID INTEREST IN LOCAL ART, NOTING, “I KNOW [MY PARENTS] WOULD GO OUT, AND DO THE ART ELSEWHERE, OR SOME AT HOME. IT JUST SEEMED NATURAL THAT THEY WOULD DEAL WITH THEIR ARTIST FRIENDS…MOM AND DAD ALWAYS HAD ART IN THE HOUSE. THEY WERE ALWAYS DOING ART. I REMEMBER DAD DOING LARGE PLASTER SCULPTURES, IN THE BASEMENT, IN THE CITY, AND MOM WAS ALWAYS PAINTING AND THROWING POTS, AND DOING SOMETHING FUNNY OUT IN THE BACK YARD, ART-WISE…I HAVE A LARGE NUMBER OF MY MOTHER’S PAINTINGS, BUT THERE ARE LOTS OF THOSE AROUND THE CITY, AND HER WORK IS WELL PRESERVED.” FOR MORE INFORMATION INCLUDING THE FULL INTERVIEW TRANSCRIPTION, PLEASE SEE THE PERMANENT FILE P20190006001-GA.
Catalogue Number
P20020006011
Acquisition Date
2002-07
Collection
Museum
Images
Less detail
Date Range From
1990
Date Range To
2000
Material Type
Artifact
Materials
MASONITE
Catalogue Number
P20020006014
  1 image  
Material Type
Artifact
Date Range From
1990
Date Range To
2000
Materials
MASONITE
No. Pieces
1
Height
0.3
Length
61.3
Width
57.2
Description
OIL ON MASONITE; NAIVE STYLE OF PAINTING. PICTURES A WOMAN, WEARING A RED DRESS AND GLASSES, IRONING CLOTHES. BEHIND HER IS A WOOD BURNING STOVE, AND THERE ARE 2 CHILDREN ON THE FLOOR (PLAYING?). THERE ARE 2 DOORS IN THE BACKGROUND; VISIBLE THROUGH ONE DOOR ARE SOME WHITE AND YELLOW CUPBOARDS.
Subjects
ART
Historical Association
FINE ARTS
History
PAINTED BY DONOR, HELEN FLAIG (1929 - 2015), AS PART OF HER "CHILDHOOD IN THE 30S" SERIES. PAINTING WAS INSPIRED BY ARTIST'S MEMORY OF LIFE ON THE PRAIRIES. FLAIG'S FATHER, LEWIS ALEXANDER HUMMASON, LEFT ONTARIO IN 1905 TO TAKE HIS SICK BROTHER'S PLACE TO GO HOMESTEADING IN SASKATCHEWAN. HER MOTHER, ESTELLA MARY STUBBS, WAS 8 YEARS YOUNGER THEN HER FATHER; SHE HAD COME WEST WITH HER PARENTS AND HER SISTER TO CALGARY; ESTELLA'S FATHER WAS A CARPENTER. ESTELLA BECAME A SCHOOL TEACHER AND IN THAT ROLE SHE TOOK A POSITION IN LOCKWOOD, SK. THE GREAT FLU CLOSED THE SCHOOL AND SHE BECAME A NURSE. FLAIG'S FATHER BECAME A HANDY MAN HELPING THE SICK, AND IN THIS WAY MET HIS WIFE. THERE WERE 8 CHILDREN IN DONOR'S FAMILY, HELEN WAS THE SEVENTH, BORN ON THE FARM IN LOCKWOOD IN 1929. HELEN'S YOUNGER SISTER BLANCHE DIED WHEN SHE WAS NEARLY NINE - THE PAINTINGS IN THIS SERIES REFERENCE THE TIMES WHEN SHE AND BLANCHE PLAYED TOGETHER. SHE STARTED THE "CHILDHOOD IN THE 30S" PAINTINGS IN 1994 AS A WAY TO BRING SOME CHEER INTO HER OLDER SISTER FERN'S LIFE, WHO WAS IN A COMA AT THE TIME. HELEN'S HUSBAND LLOYD FLAIG WAS RAISED IN ALBERTA. SHE AND LLOYD MET IN 1949 WHILE WORKING AT THE PSYCHIATRIC HOSPITAL IN NORTH BATTLEFORD, SK. THEY MOVED TO CALGARY WHERE LLOYD DECIDED TO BECOME A SCHOOL TEACHER AND HIS FIRST POSITION WAS IN LETHBRIDGE IN 1955. HELEN HAS ALWAYS BEEN INTERESTED IN DRAWING AND JOINED THE LETHBRIDGE SKETCH CLUB IN 1955. HELEN STARTED POTTERY CLASSES IN 1964 WITH THE OLDMAN RIVER POTTERS GUILD AND CONTINUED WITH THEM TO THE PRESENT DAY. SHE AND LLOYD MOVED TO THEIR ACREAGE IN 1974, BUT SHE HAS CONTINUED TO TAKE COURSES, ESPECIALLY FIGURATIVE WORK AT BOWMAN ART'S CENTER, THE COMMUNITY COLLEGE, UNIVERSITY OF LETHBRIDGE, AND AT RED DEER COLLEGE. *UPDATE* IN 2014 COLLECTIONS ASSISTANT JANE EDMUNDSON CONDUCTED A SURVEY OF ART OBJECTS. SHE FOUND THE FOLLOWING DESCRIPTION OF HELEN FLAIG'S 'CHILDHOOD IN THE 1930S' SERIES IN THE BROCHURE PRODUCED BY THE RED DEER AND DISTRICT MUSEUM FOR THE 1997 EXHIBITION OF FLAIG'S WORK, WRITTEN BY EXHIBITS COORDINATOR DIANA ANDERSON: "THIS SERIES OF 20 PAINTINGS RETURNS HELEN TO HER CHILDHOOD DAYS OF GROWING UP ON A FARM IN RURAL SASKATCHEWAN... HELEN CHOOSES THE THINGS THAT MEANT SOMETHING TO HER. SHE STARTED WITH GRASSES AND VEGETABLES AND HER OWN CHILDREN, ORDINARY THINGS THAT SURROUNDED HER... HELEN IS INTERSTED IN THE MOOD OF THE PAINTINGS MORE THAN THE ACCURACY OF THE IMAGE. HER PERSONAL VISION AND FRESHNESS OF CONCEPT GIVE THIS SERIES ITS VISUAL IMPACT THROUGH THE USE OF NAIVE PAINTING... NAIVE PAINTING CAN BE DESCRIBED AS A TYPE OF PAINTING THAT IS UNSOPHISTICATED, CHILDLIKE, SIMPLE OR UNWORLDLY... IN HELEN'S CASE, THIS IS IMPLY A STYLE THAT SHE CHOSE TO BETTER EXPRESS HER SUBJECT MATTER, AS IT CAPTURES MOST CLOSELY THE FLAVOUR SHE WANTED TO GIVE OF THE 1930S... THE PAINTINGS SHOW AN OPEN, HONEST APPROACH TO THE SUBJECT AND EACH PAINTING HOLDS SPECIAL MEANING FOR HELEN." FOR A COPY OF THE BROCHURE AND FURTHER BIOGRAPHICAL INFORMATION ON THE ARTIST, SEE PERMANENT FILE P20020006001. *UPDATE* ON MARCH 5, 2019, COLLECTIONS TECHNICIAN KEVIN MACLEAN INTERVIEWED DON FLAIG REGARDING HIS DONATION OF ARTWORKS COLLECTED BY HIS PARENTS, HELEN AND LLOYD FLAIG. IN HIS INTERVIEW, DON FLAIG SPOKE ABOUT HIS MOTHER'S, HELEN FLAIG'S, ART PRACTICE. ON HIS MOTHER’S PAINTINGS AND PRACTICE, DON FLAIG ELABORATED, “I LEARNED LATER, THAT [MY MOTHER’S LOVE OF ART] WAS BORN OUT OF HER DESIRE TO BRING ART TO HER SISTER, FERN, WHO HAD A BRAIN ANEURYSM WHEN SHE WAS ABOUT FIFTEEN YEARS OLD. [FERN] SPENT MANY YEARS IN HOSPITAL IN LABRECQUE, IN SASKATCHEWAN, BUT [MOM] NEVER GOT THERE; NEVER GOT THE PAINTINGS OUT THERE. THE ART WORK IS, IN SOME WAYS, CRUDE. THERE ARE NO SHADOWS; THE PEOPLE ARE KIND OF LUMPY; THE COLORS ARE BRIGHT, AND ALL THESE SCENES REPRESENT SOMETHING OF HER LIFE AS A YOUNG GIRL ON A FARM, IN SASKATCHEWAN, AND HOW HARD IT MUST HAVE BEEN. THERE IS A LOT OF FEELING IN EACH ONE OF HER PAINTINGS. MANY OF THEM WE’LL NEVER KNOW THE STORIES, BUT THEY’RE ALL COUCHED IN STORIES. I HAD NO IDEA EITHER, UNTIL JUST NOW, HOW PROLIFIC SHE WAS; HOW MANY PAINTINGS SHE MUST HAVE DONE. I THINK IT WAS A CATHARSIS FOR HER, BUT ALSO REPRESENTATIVE OF THEIR LIVES, GROWING UP ON A FARM IN SASKATCHEWAN—THE ISOLATION, THE COLD, THE STRIFE AMONGST THE FAMILY, THE DIFFICULTY OF HER PARENTS HOLDING A MARRIAGE TOGETHER, AND THEIR DESPERATION, WITH SEVEN KIDS, TO GET OFF THE FARM AND GET OUT OF THERE, AND MAKE SOMETHING. IT’S A HERITAGE – HER PAINTINGS, AS ARE THESE HERE. YOU JUST LOOK AT THEM AND WONDER HOW IT IS THAT AN ARTIST CAN VISUALIZE THIS, AND PUT SO MUCH FEELING INTO EACH PIECE. THE LIGHT, THE FACIAL EXPRESSION, THE SUGGESTION OF A LINE, SOMETHING SIMPLE…SOMEBODY JUST [DAUBED] THE PAINT ON THERE, GLOBS THE YELLOW OF THE TREES. THERE’S SOMETHING THERE THAT—IT’S A HERITAGE. I [HEARD IN A MOVIE] ART IS THE TRUTH THAT WE HAVE EXISTED. THESE PEOPLE EXISTED. MOM, THE LIFE THEY HAD, WILL BE FORGOTTEN, BUT IT WAS THERE. NOW, AS OUR SUCCEEDING GENERATIONS, WE HAVE THE LIFE WE HAVE BECAUSE OF WHAT THEY WENT THROUGH. THE RICHNESS OF THEIR LIFE, WE CAN NEVER REPAY IT, BUT WE CAN HOPE TO PROFIT FROM IT.” FLAIG ELABORATED ON HIS PARENTS’ AVID INTEREST IN LOCAL ART, NOTING, “I KNOW [MY PARENTS] WOULD GO OUT, AND DO THE ART ELSEWHERE, OR SOME AT HOME. IT JUST SEEMED NATURAL THAT THEY WOULD DEAL WITH THEIR ARTIST FRIENDS…MOM AND DAD ALWAYS HAD ART IN THE HOUSE. THEY WERE ALWAYS DOING ART. I REMEMBER DAD DOING LARGE PLASTER SCULPTURES, IN THE BASEMENT, IN THE CITY, AND MOM WAS ALWAYS PAINTING AND THROWING POTS, AND DOING SOMETHING FUNNY OUT IN THE BACK YARD, ART-WISE…I HAVE A LARGE NUMBER OF MY MOTHER’S PAINTINGS, BUT THERE ARE LOTS OF THOSE AROUND THE CITY, AND HER WORK IS WELL PRESERVED.” FOR MORE INFORMATION INCLUDING THE FULL INTERVIEW TRANSCRIPTION, PLEASE SEE THE PERMANENT FILE P20190006001-GA.
Catalogue Number
P20020006014
Acquisition Date
2002-07
Collection
Museum
Images
Less detail
Other Name
"CHURNING"
Date Range From
1990
Date Range To
2000
Material Type
Artifact
Materials
MASONITE
Catalogue Number
P20020006015
  1 image  
Material Type
Artifact
Other Name
"CHURNING"
Date Range From
1990
Date Range To
2000
Materials
MASONITE
No. Pieces
1
Height
0.3
Length
61.0
Width
58.0
Description
ACRYLIC ON MASONITE; NAIVE STYLE OF PAINTING. PICTURES A GIRL IN A RED DRESS SITTING ON A STOOL, READING A BOOK, AND CHURNING BUTTER. ANOTHER GIRL IN A BLUE DRESS IS SITTING ON A SET OF STAIRS. THE GIRLS APPEAR TO BE IN A BASEMENT. IN BOTTOM RIGHT HAND CORNER IS ARTIST'S SIGNATURE "H FLAIG". BACK OF PAINTING HAS A WOOD GRAIN APPEARANCE. THERE IS A LABEL ON BACK THAT READS "
Subjects
ART
Historical Association
FINE ARTS
History
PAINTED BY DONOR, HELEN FLAIG (1929 - 2015), AS PART OF HER "CHILDHOOD IN THE 30S" SERIES. PAINTING WAS INSPIRED BY ARTIST'S MEMORY OF LIFE ON THE PRAIRIES. "WE SAVED CREAM WITH A CREAM CAN SITTING IN THE COLD WATER THAT CAME UP FROM AN ARTESIAN WELL (296 FEET, I BELIEVE) BELOW THE GROUND. MY SISTER DIDN'T TIGHTEN THE TOP PROPERLY AND THE CREAM SPILLED ON THE FLOOR. CHURNING IN THE COOL CELLAR WAS A NICE JOB. WE MADE BUTTERMILK WHICH OUR FATHER LIKED. WE ALSO SOLD CREAM." FLAIG'S FATHER, LEWIS ALEXANDER HUMMASON, LEFT ONTARIO IN 1905 TO TAKE HIS SICK BROTHER'S PLACE TO GO HOMESTEADING IN SASKATCHEWAN. HER MOTHER, ESTELLA MARY STUBBS, WAS 8 YEARS YOUNGER THEN HER FATHER; SHE HAD COME WEST WITH HER PARENTS AND HER SISTER TO CALGARY; ESTELLA'S FATHER WAS A CARPENTER. ESTELLA BECAME A SCHOOL TEACHER AND IN THAT ROLE SHE TOOK A POSITION IN LOCKWOOD, SK. THE GREAT FLU CLOSED THE SCHOOL AND SHE BECAME A NURSE. FLAIG'S FATHER BECAME A HANDY MAN HELPING THE SICK, AND IN THIS WAY MET HIS WIFE. THERE WERE 8 CHILDREN IN DONOR'S FAMILY, HELEN WAS THE SEVENTH, BORN ON THE FARM IN LOCKWOOD IN 1929. HELEN'S YOUNGER SISTER BLANCHE DIED WHEN SHE WAS NEARLY NINE - THE PAINTINGS IN THIS SERIES REFERENCE THE TIMES WHEN SHE AND BLANCHE PLAYED TOGETHER. SHE STARTED THE "CHILDHOOD IN THE 30S" PAINTINGS IN 1994 AS A WAY TO BRING SOME CHEER INTO HER OLDER SISTER FERN'S LIFE, WHO WAS IN A COMA AT THE TIME. HELEN'S HUSBAND LLOYD FLAIG WAS RAISED IN ALBERTA. SHE AND LLOYD MET IN 1949 WHILE WORKING AT THE PSYCHIATRIC HOSPITAL IN NORTH BATTLEFORD, SK. THEY MOVED TO CALGARY WHERE LLOYD DECIDED TO BECOME A SCHOOL TEACHER AND HIS FIRST POSITION WAS IN LETHBRIDGE IN 1955. HELEN HAS ALWAYS BEEN INTERESTED IN DRAWING AND JOINED THE LETHBRIDGE SKETCH CLUB IN 1955. HELEN STARTED POTTERY CLASSES IN 1964 WITH THE OLDMAN RIVER POTTERS GUILD AND CONTINUED WITH THEM TO THE PRESENT DAY. SHE AND LLOYD MOVED TO THEIR ACREAGE IN 1974, BUT SHE HAS CONTINUED TO TAKE COURSES, ESPECIALLY FIGURATIVE WORK AT BOWMAN ART'S CENTER, THE COMMUNITY COLLEGE, UNIVERSITY OF LETHBRIDGE, AND AT RED DEER COLLEGE. *UPDATE* IN 2014 COLLECTIONS ASSISTANT JANE EDMUNDSON CONDUCTED A SURVEY OF ART OBJECTS. SHE FOUND THE FOLLOWING DESCRIPTION OF HELEN FLAIG'S 'CHILDHOOD IN THE 1930S' SERIES IN THE BROCHURE PRODUCED BY THE RED DEER AND DISTRICT MUSEUM FOR THE 1997 EXHIBITION OF FLAIG'S WORK, WRITTEN BY EXHIBITS COORDINATOR DIANA ANDERSON: "THIS SERIES OF 20 PAINTINGS RETURNS HELEN TO HER CHILDHOOD DAYS OF GROWING UP ON A FARM IN RURAL SASKATCHEWAN... HELEN CHOOSES THE THINGS THAT MEANT SOMETHING TO HER. SHE STARTED WITH GRASSES AND VEGETABLES AND HER OWN CHILDREN, ORDINARY THINGS THAT SURROUNDED HER... HELEN IS INTERSTED IN THE MOOD OF THE PAINTINGS MORE THAN THE ACCURACY OF THE IMAGE. HER PERSONAL VISION AND FRESHNESS OF CONCEPT GIVE THIS SERIES ITS VISUAL IMPACT THROUGH THE USE OF NAIVE PAINTING... NAIVE PAINTING CAN BE DESCRIBED AS A TYPE OF PAINTING THAT IS UNSOPHISTICATED, CHILDLIKE, SIMPLE OR UNWORLDLY... IN HELEN'S CASE, THIS IS IMPLY A STYLE THAT SHE CHOSE TO BETTER EXPRESS HER SUBJECT MATTER, AS IT CAPTURES MOST CLOSELY THE FLAVOUR SHE WANTED TO GIVE OF THE 1930S... THE PAINTINGS SHOW AN OPEN, HONEST APPROACH TO THE SUBJECT AND EACH PAINTING HOLDS SPECIAL MEANING FOR HELEN." FOR A COPY OF THE BROCHURE AND FURTHER BIOGRAPHICAL INFORMATION ON THE ARTIST, SEE PERMANENT FILE P20020006001. *UPDATE* ON MARCH 5, 2019, COLLECTIONS TECHNICIAN KEVIN MACLEAN INTERVIEWED DON FLAIG REGARDING HIS DONATION OF ARTWORKS COLLECTED BY HIS PARENTS, HELEN AND LLOYD FLAIG. IN HIS INTERVIEW, DON FLAIG SPOKE ABOUT HIS MOTHER'S, HELEN FLAIG'S, ART PRACTICE. ON HIS MOTHER’S PAINTINGS AND PRACTICE, DON FLAIG ELABORATED, “I LEARNED LATER, THAT [MY MOTHER’S LOVE OF ART] WAS BORN OUT OF HER DESIRE TO BRING ART TO HER SISTER, FERN, WHO HAD A BRAIN ANEURYSM WHEN SHE WAS ABOUT FIFTEEN YEARS OLD. [FERN] SPENT MANY YEARS IN HOSPITAL IN LABRECQUE, IN SASKATCHEWAN, BUT [MOM] NEVER GOT THERE; NEVER GOT THE PAINTINGS OUT THERE. THE ART WORK IS, IN SOME WAYS, CRUDE. THERE ARE NO SHADOWS; THE PEOPLE ARE KIND OF LUMPY; THE COLORS ARE BRIGHT, AND ALL THESE SCENES REPRESENT SOMETHING OF HER LIFE AS A YOUNG GIRL ON A FARM, IN SASKATCHEWAN, AND HOW HARD IT MUST HAVE BEEN. THERE IS A LOT OF FEELING IN EACH ONE OF HER PAINTINGS. MANY OF THEM WE’LL NEVER KNOW THE STORIES, BUT THEY’RE ALL COUCHED IN STORIES. I HAD NO IDEA EITHER, UNTIL JUST NOW, HOW PROLIFIC SHE WAS; HOW MANY PAINTINGS SHE MUST HAVE DONE. I THINK IT WAS A CATHARSIS FOR HER, BUT ALSO REPRESENTATIVE OF THEIR LIVES, GROWING UP ON A FARM IN SASKATCHEWAN—THE ISOLATION, THE COLD, THE STRIFE AMONGST THE FAMILY, THE DIFFICULTY OF HER PARENTS HOLDING A MARRIAGE TOGETHER, AND THEIR DESPERATION, WITH SEVEN KIDS, TO GET OFF THE FARM AND GET OUT OF THERE, AND MAKE SOMETHING. IT’S A HERITAGE – HER PAINTINGS, AS ARE THESE HERE. YOU JUST LOOK AT THEM AND WONDER HOW IT IS THAT AN ARTIST CAN VISUALIZE THIS, AND PUT SO MUCH FEELING INTO EACH PIECE. THE LIGHT, THE FACIAL EXPRESSION, THE SUGGESTION OF A LINE, SOMETHING SIMPLE…SOMEBODY JUST [DAUBED] THE PAINT ON THERE, GLOBS THE YELLOW OF THE TREES. THERE’S SOMETHING THERE THAT—IT’S A HERITAGE. I [HEARD IN A MOVIE] ART IS THE TRUTH THAT WE HAVE EXISTED. THESE PEOPLE EXISTED. MOM, THE LIFE THEY HAD, WILL BE FORGOTTEN, BUT IT WAS THERE. NOW, AS OUR SUCCEEDING GENERATIONS, WE HAVE THE LIFE WE HAVE BECAUSE OF WHAT THEY WENT THROUGH. THE RICHNESS OF THEIR LIFE, WE CAN NEVER REPAY IT, BUT WE CAN HOPE TO PROFIT FROM IT.” FLAIG ELABORATED ON HIS PARENTS’ AVID INTEREST IN LOCAL ART, NOTING, “I KNOW [MY PARENTS] WOULD GO OUT, AND DO THE ART ELSEWHERE, OR SOME AT HOME. IT JUST SEEMED NATURAL THAT THEY WOULD DEAL WITH THEIR ARTIST FRIENDS…MOM AND DAD ALWAYS HAD ART IN THE HOUSE. THEY WERE ALWAYS DOING ART. I REMEMBER DAD DOING LARGE PLASTER SCULPTURES, IN THE BASEMENT, IN THE CITY, AND MOM WAS ALWAYS PAINTING AND THROWING POTS, AND DOING SOMETHING FUNNY OUT IN THE BACK YARD, ART-WISE…I HAVE A LARGE NUMBER OF MY MOTHER’S PAINTINGS, BUT THERE ARE LOTS OF THOSE AROUND THE CITY, AND HER WORK IS WELL PRESERVED.” FOR MORE INFORMATION INCLUDING THE FULL INTERVIEW TRANSCRIPTION, PLEASE SEE THE PERMANENT FILE P20190006001-GA.
Catalogue Number
P20020006015
Acquisition Date
2002-07
Collection
Museum
Images
Less detail
Other Name
"BLIND MAN'S BLUFF"
Date Range From
1990
Date Range To
2000
Material Type
Artifact
Materials
WOOD, CANVAS, PAPER
Catalogue Number
P20020006017
  1 image  
Material Type
Artifact
Other Name
"BLIND MAN'S BLUFF"
Date Range From
1990
Date Range To
2000
Materials
WOOD, CANVAS, PAPER
No. Pieces
1
Height
3.8
Length
61.8
Width
47.7
Description
OIL ON CANVAS; NAIVE STYLE OF PAINTING. HAS A VARNISHED WOOD FRAME. PICTURES 3 CHILDREN STANDING ON TOP OF A SHORT STAIRWAY. ONE CHILD, IN A GREEN TOP AND RED SHORTS, HAS A WHITE BLINDFOLD OVER HER EYES. THE OTHER TWO ARE LOOKING ON. THE WALLS IN PAINTING ARE BLUE. NEAR BOTTOM RIGHT HAND CORNER IS ARTIST'S SIGNATURE "H FLAIG". PAINTING IS BACKED WITH BROWN PAPER; HELD ON BY PACKING TAPE AT THE BOTTOM AND MASKING TAPE ON SIDES AND TOP. ON PAPER IS A LABEL THAT READS "BLIND MAN'S BLUFF $150.00". THERE IS ALSO A WIRE FOR HANGING.
Subjects
ART
Historical Association
FINE ARTS
History
PAINTED BY DONOR, HELEN FLAIG (1929 - 2015), AS PART OF HER "CHILDHOOD IN THE 30S" SERIES. PAINTING WAS INSPIRED BY ARTIST'S MEMORY OF LIFE ON THE PRAIRIES. FLAIG'S FATHER, LEWIS ALEXANDER HUMMASON, LEFT ONTARIO IN 1905 TO TAKE HIS SICK BROTHER'S PLACE TO GO HOMESTEADING IN SASKATCHEWAN. HER MOTHER, ESTELLA MARY STUBBS, WAS 8 YEARS YOUNGER THEN HER FATHER; SHE HAD COME WEST WITH HER PARENTS AND HER SISTER TO CALGARY; ESTELLA'S FATHER WAS A CARPENTER. ESTELLA BECAME A SCHOOL TEACHER AND IN THAT ROLE SHE TOOK A POSITION IN LOCKWOOD, SK. THE GREAT FLU CLOSED THE SCHOOL AND SHE BECAME A NURSE. FLAIG'S FATHER BECAME A HANDY MAN HELPING THE SICK, AND IN THIS WAY MET HIS WIFE. THERE WERE 8 CHILDREN IN DONOR'S FAMILY, HELEN WAS THE SEVENTH, BORN ON THE FARM IN LOCKWOOD IN 1929. HELEN'S YOUNGER SISTER BLANCHE DIED WHEN SHE WAS NEARLY NINE - THE PAINTINGS IN THIS SERIES REFERENCE THE TIMES WHEN SHE AND BLANCHE PLAYED TOGETHER. SHE STARTED THE "CHILDHOOD IN THE 30S" PAINTINGS IN 1994 AS A WAY TO BRING SOME CHEER INTO HER OLDER SISTER FERN'S LIFE, WHO WAS IN A COMA AT THE TIME. HELEN'S HUSBAND LLOYD FLAIG WAS RAISED IN ALBERTA. SHE AND LLOYD MET IN 1949 WHILE WORKING AT THE PSYCHIATRIC HOSPITAL IN NORTH BATTLEFORD, SK. THEY MOVED TO CALGARY WHERE LLOYD DECIDED TO BECOME A SCHOOL TEACHER AND HIS FIRST POSITION WAS IN LETHBRIDGE IN 1955. HELEN HAS ALWAYS BEEN INTERESTED IN DRAWING AND JOINED THE LETHBRIDGE SKETCH CLUB IN 1955. HELEN STARTED POTTERY CLASSES IN 1964 WITH THE OLDMAN RIVER POTTERS GUILD AND CONTINUED WITH THEM TO THE PRESENT DAY. SHE AND LLOYD MOVED TO THEIR ACREAGE IN 1974, BUT SHE HAS CONTINUED TO TAKE COURSES, ESPECIALLY FIGURATIVE WORK AT BOWMAN ART'S CENTER, THE COMMUNITY COLLEGE, UNIVERSITY OF LETHBRIDGE, AND AT RED DEER COLLEGE. *UPDATE* IN 2014 COLLECTIONS ASSISTANT JANE EDMUNDSON CONDUCTED A SURVEY OF ART OBJECTS. SHE FOUND THE FOLLOWING DESCRIPTION OF HELEN FLAIG'S 'CHILDHOOD IN THE 1930S' SERIES IN THE BROCHURE PRODUCED BY THE RED DEER AND DISTRICT MUSEUM FOR THE 1997 EXHIBITION OF FLAIG'S WORK, WRITTEN BY EXHIBITS COORDINATOR DIANA ANDERSON: "THIS SERIES OF 20 PAINTINGS RETURNS HELEN TO HER CHILDHOOD DAYS OF GROWING UP ON A FARM IN RURAL SASKATCHEWAN... HELEN CHOOSES THE THINGS THAT MEANT SOMETHING TO HER. SHE STARTED WITH GRASSES AND VEGETABLES AND HER OWN CHILDREN, ORDINARY THINGS THAT SURROUNDED HER... HELEN IS INTERSTED IN THE MOOD OF THE PAINTINGS MORE THAN THE ACCURACY OF THE IMAGE. HER PERSONAL VISION AND FRESHNESS OF CONCEPT GIVE THIS SERIES ITS VISUAL IMPACT THROUGH THE USE OF NAIVE PAINTING... NAIVE PAINTING CAN BE DESCRIBED AS A TYPE OF PAINTING THAT IS UNSOPHISTICATED, CHILDLIKE, SIMPLE OR UNWORLDLY... IN HELEN'S CASE, THIS IS IMPLY A STYLE THAT SHE CHOSE TO BETTER EXPRESS HER SUBJECT MATTER, AS IT CAPTURES MOST CLOSELY THE FLAVOUR SHE WANTED TO GIVE OF THE 1930S... THE PAINTINGS SHOW AN OPEN, HONEST APPROACH TO THE SUBJECT AND EACH PAINTING HOLDS SPECIAL MEANING FOR HELEN." FOR A COPY OF THE BROCHURE AND FURTHER BIOGRAPHICAL INFORMATION ON THE ARTIST, SEE PERMANENT FILE P20020006001. *UPDATE* ON MARCH 5, 2019, COLLECTIONS TECHNICIAN KEVIN MACLEAN INTERVIEWED DON FLAIG REGARDING HIS DONATION OF ARTWORKS COLLECTED BY HIS PARENTS, HELEN AND LLOYD FLAIG. IN HIS INTERVIEW, DON FLAIG SPOKE ABOUT HIS MOTHER'S, HELEN FLAIG'S, ART PRACTICE. ON HIS MOTHER’S PAINTINGS AND PRACTICE, DON FLAIG ELABORATED, “I LEARNED LATER, THAT [MY MOTHER’S LOVE OF ART] WAS BORN OUT OF HER DESIRE TO BRING ART TO HER SISTER, FERN, WHO HAD A BRAIN ANEURYSM WHEN SHE WAS ABOUT FIFTEEN YEARS OLD. [FERN] SPENT MANY YEARS IN HOSPITAL IN LABRECQUE, IN SASKATCHEWAN, BUT [MOM] NEVER GOT THERE; NEVER GOT THE PAINTINGS OUT THERE. THE ART WORK IS, IN SOME WAYS, CRUDE. THERE ARE NO SHADOWS; THE PEOPLE ARE KIND OF LUMPY; THE COLORS ARE BRIGHT, AND ALL THESE SCENES REPRESENT SOMETHING OF HER LIFE AS A YOUNG GIRL ON A FARM, IN SASKATCHEWAN, AND HOW HARD IT MUST HAVE BEEN. THERE IS A LOT OF FEELING IN EACH ONE OF HER PAINTINGS. MANY OF THEM WE’LL NEVER KNOW THE STORIES, BUT THEY’RE ALL COUCHED IN STORIES. I HAD NO IDEA EITHER, UNTIL JUST NOW, HOW PROLIFIC SHE WAS; HOW MANY PAINTINGS SHE MUST HAVE DONE. I THINK IT WAS A CATHARSIS FOR HER, BUT ALSO REPRESENTATIVE OF THEIR LIVES, GROWING UP ON A FARM IN SASKATCHEWAN—THE ISOLATION, THE COLD, THE STRIFE AMONGST THE FAMILY, THE DIFFICULTY OF HER PARENTS HOLDING A MARRIAGE TOGETHER, AND THEIR DESPERATION, WITH SEVEN KIDS, TO GET OFF THE FARM AND GET OUT OF THERE, AND MAKE SOMETHING. IT’S A HERITAGE – HER PAINTINGS, AS ARE THESE HERE. YOU JUST LOOK AT THEM AND WONDER HOW IT IS THAT AN ARTIST CAN VISUALIZE THIS, AND PUT SO MUCH FEELING INTO EACH PIECE. THE LIGHT, THE FACIAL EXPRESSION, THE SUGGESTION OF A LINE, SOMETHING SIMPLE…SOMEBODY JUST [DAUBED] THE PAINT ON THERE, GLOBS THE YELLOW OF THE TREES. THERE’S SOMETHING THERE THAT—IT’S A HERITAGE. I [HEARD IN A MOVIE] ART IS THE TRUTH THAT WE HAVE EXISTED. THESE PEOPLE EXISTED. MOM, THE LIFE THEY HAD, WILL BE FORGOTTEN, BUT IT WAS THERE. NOW, AS OUR SUCCEEDING GENERATIONS, WE HAVE THE LIFE WE HAVE BECAUSE OF WHAT THEY WENT THROUGH. THE RICHNESS OF THEIR LIFE, WE CAN NEVER REPAY IT, BUT WE CAN HOPE TO PROFIT FROM IT.” FLAIG ELABORATED ON HIS PARENTS’ AVID INTEREST IN LOCAL ART, NOTING, “I KNOW [MY PARENTS] WOULD GO OUT, AND DO THE ART ELSEWHERE, OR SOME AT HOME. IT JUST SEEMED NATURAL THAT THEY WOULD DEAL WITH THEIR ARTIST FRIENDS…MOM AND DAD ALWAYS HAD ART IN THE HOUSE. THEY WERE ALWAYS DOING ART. I REMEMBER DAD DOING LARGE PLASTER SCULPTURES, IN THE BASEMENT, IN THE CITY, AND MOM WAS ALWAYS PAINTING AND THROWING POTS, AND DOING SOMETHING FUNNY OUT IN THE BACK YARD, ART-WISE…I HAVE A LARGE NUMBER OF MY MOTHER’S PAINTINGS, BUT THERE ARE LOTS OF THOSE AROUND THE CITY, AND HER WORK IS WELL PRESERVED.” FOR MORE INFORMATION INCLUDING THE FULL INTERVIEW TRANSCRIPTION, PLEASE SEE THE PERMANENT FILE P20190006001-GA.
Catalogue Number
P20020006017
Acquisition Date
2002-07
Collection
Museum
Images
Less detail
Date Range From
1980
Date Range To
1990
Material Type
Artifact
Materials
STEEL, PAPER, GLASS, ORGANIC MATERIAL
Catalogue Number
P19970041826
Material Type
Artifact
Date Range From
1980
Date Range To
1990
Materials
STEEL, PAPER, GLASS, ORGANIC MATERIAL
No. Pieces
1
Height
1.2
Length
9.2
Width
9.2
Description
SQUARE STEEL FRAME WITH BRASS COLOURING AND CLEAR GLASS. PICTURE IS OF FIVE PRESS MUSHROOMS WITH SEVERAL PRESSED FLOWERS TO THE SIDE. CIRCULAR RED INK JAPANESE SEAL.
Subjects
ART
Historical Association
DECORATIVE ARTS
History
PICTURE WAS A GIFT TO DONOR'S PARENTS, REV. G.G. AND LOIS NAKAYAMA, FROM AYA SUZUKI SAEGUSA (DAVID SUZUKI'S AUNT). THE NAKAYAMA FAMILY WAS ORIGINALLY FROM VANCOUVER BUT MOVED TO COALDALE FOLLOWING THE SECOND WORLD WAR WHEN THEY WERE INTERNED AT SLOCAN CITY IN THE INTERIOR OF BRITISH COLUMBIA BY THE CANADIAN GOVERNMENT. THE DONOR'S FATHER, REV. CANON G.G. NAKAYAMA, WAS AN ANGLICAN MINISTER IN VANCOUVER, AND THEN ESTABLISHED THE CHURCH OF THE ASCENSION IN COALDALE IN 1945 WHERE HE SERVED UNTIL 1970. SEE RECORD P19970041001 FOR EXPANDED BIOGRAPHICAL INFORMATION AND PERMANENT FILE FOR FURTHER HISTORY.
Catalogue Number
P19970041826
Acquisition Date
1997-01
Collection
Museum
Less detail
Other Name
PAPER PAGODA
Date Range From
1980
Date Range To
1990
Material Type
Artifact
Materials
WOOD, PAPER
Catalogue Number
P19970041854
  2 images  
Material Type
Artifact
Other Name
PAPER PAGODA
Date Range From
1980
Date Range To
1990
Materials
WOOD, PAPER
No. Pieces
1
Height
17.7
Diameter
15
Description
PAPER SCULPTED PAGODA IS GREEN, WHITE AND YELLOW PAPER WRAPPERS FOLDED AND SEWN TOGETHER TO FORM MINIATURE STRUCTURE WITH THREE FEET AND CIRCULAR TAPERED ROOF. MIDDLE PORTION OF BODY HAS THREE WINDOWS WHICH ARE COVERED WITH GOLD COLOURED FOIL. CENTRAL WOODEN SHAFT PROTRUDES 1CM AT APEX OF ROOF AND IS COVERED WITH GREEN FOIL PAPER.
Subjects
ART
Historical Association
DECORATIVE ARTS
History
MINIATURE PAGODA WAS MADE AS A GIFT FOR DONOR'S FATHER BY SOMEONE FROM THE JAPANESE COMMUNITY IN VANCOUVER WHERE HE MOVED IN 1980. THE NAKAYAMA FAMILY WAS ORIGINALLY FROM VANCOUVER BUT MOVED TO COALDALE FOLLOWING THE SECOND WORLD WAR WHEN THEY WERE INTERNED AT SLOCAN CITY IN THE INTERIOR OF BRITISH COLUMBIA BY THE CANADIAN GOVERNMENT. THE DONOR'S FATHER, REV. CANON G.G. NAKAYAMA, WAS AN ANGLICAN MINISTER IN VANCOUVER, AND THEN ESTABLISHED THE CHURCH OF THE ASCENSION IN COALDALE IN 1945 WHERE HE SERVED UNTIL 1970. SEE RECORD P19970041001 FOR EXPANDED BIOGRAPHICAL INFORMATION AND PERMANENT FILE FOR FURTHER HISTORY.
Catalogue Number
P19970041854
Acquisition Date
1997-01
Collection
Museum
Images
Less detail
Other Name
PAPER PARASOL
Date Range From
1980
Date Range To
1990
Material Type
Artifact
Materials
WOOD, PAPER
Catalogue Number
P19970041855
  2 images  
Material Type
Artifact
Other Name
PAPER PARASOL
Date Range From
1980
Date Range To
1990
Materials
WOOD, PAPER
No. Pieces
1
Height
14
Diameter
15.7
Description
PAPER SCULPTED PARASOL IS GREEN, WHITE AND YELLOW PAPER WRAPPERS FOLDED AND SEWN TOGETHER TO FORM MINIATURE UMBRELLA WITH GREEN PIPING WOVEN IN BETWEEN SUPPORT RODS. CENTRAL WOOD SHAFT IS COVERED WITH SILVER COLOURED FOIL PAPER BELOW UMBRELLA AND WITH GREEN FOIL PAPER ABOVE. TIP OF SHAFT ALSO HAS RED NYLON TASSEL.
Subjects
ART
Historical Association
DECORATIVE ARTS
History
MINIATURE PARASOL WAS MADE AS A GIFT FOR DONOR'S FATHER BY SOMEONE FROM THE JAPANESE COMMUNITY IN VANCOUVER WHERE HE MOVED IN 1980. THE NAKAYAMA FAMILY WAS ORIGINALLY FROM VANCOUVER BUT MOVED TO COALDALE FOLLOWING THE SECOND WORLD WAR WHEN THEY WERE INTERNED AT SLOCAN CITY IN THE INTERIOR OF BRITISH COLUMBIA BY THE CANADIAN GOVERNMENT. THE DONOR'S FATHER, REV. CANON G.G. NAKAYAMA, WAS AN ANGLICAN MINISTER IN VANCOUVER, AND THEN ESTABLISHED THE CHURCH OF THE ASCENSION IN COALDALE IN 1945 WHERE HE SERVED UNTIL 1970. SEE RECORD P19970041001 FOR EXPANDED BIOGRAPHICAL INFORMATION AND PERMANENT FILE FOR FURTHER HISTORY.
Catalogue Number
P19970041855
Acquisition Date
1997-01
Collection
Museum
Images
Less detail
Other Name
"UNTITLED"
Date Range From
1990
Date Range To
2000
Material Type
Artifact
Materials
PAPER, METAL, PAINT
Catalogue Number
P20190006004
  2 images  
Material Type
Artifact
Other Name
"UNTITLED"
Date Range From
1990
Date Range To
2000
Materials
PAPER, METAL, PAINT
No. Pieces
1
Length
74.8
Width
67
Description
WATERCOLOUR AND PASTEL PAINTING DEPICTING A TREE IN THE FOREGROUND IN BLACK PASTEL ON GREEN, PURPLE, PINK AND BLUE BLENDED WATERCOLOUR BACKGROUND. TREE AND GROUND OUTLINES ARE DONE IN PASTEL WITH ABSTRACT WATERCOLOUR BACKGROUNDS FOR LEAVES AND LANDSCAPE. PAINTING SIGNED IN FRONT LOWER RIGHT CORNER IN BLACK INK, "MELISSA MALKAS". PAINTING BACK IS STAINED, AND HAS INSCRIPTION IN LOWER RIGHT CORNER IN BLACK LEAD "PAINTING BY MELISSA MALKAS". PAINTING WAS DONATED IN A LAVENDER MATTE AND SILVER METAL FRAME. FRAME HAD WHITE COROPLAST BACKING WITH HANDWRITTEN TEXT IN BLUE MARKER ON LEFT SIDE "MELISSA AFTER CALGARY". MATTE CONSISTED OF A FRONT BOARD WITH THE PAINTING SECURED BY MASKING TAPE ALONG FOUR EDGES. A TREATMENT WAS CONDUCTED ON OCTOBER 24, 2019 BY CONSERVATOR JULIET GRAHAM TO REMOVE THE MASKING TAPE FROM THE BACK OF THE PAINTING, AND TO SECURE HOLLYTEX TO THE REMAINING ADHESIVE ON THE PAINTING. PAINTING HAS TWO PINHOLES AT LOWER RIGHT CORNER, AND SMALL TEARS ALONG RIGHT EDGE [REVEALED DURING TREATMENT TO REMOVE TAPE]. PAINTING HAS ADHESIVE RESIDUE ALONG FRONT EDGES FROM PREVIOUS MATTING OR FRAMING. OVERALL VERY GOOD CONDITION. FOR FURTHER CONDITION DETAILS AND THE COMPLETE TREATMENT REPORT BY CONSERVATOR JULIET GRAHAM, PLEASE SEE THE PERMANENT FILE P20190006001-GA.
Subjects
ART
Historical Association
FINE ARTS
History
ON MARCH 5, 2019, COLLECTIONS TECHNICIAN KEVIN MACLEAN INTERVIEWED DON FLAIG REGARDING HIS DONATION OF ARTWORKS. THE ARTWORKS WERE COLLECTED BY FLAIG’S PARENTS, HELEN AND LLOYD FLAIG. ON THE PAINTING BY MELISSA MALKAS, FLAIG RECALLED, “MY BROTHERS AND I HAD MET [MELISSA MALKAS]. WE THOUGHT HIGHLY OF HER AS AN ARTIST, [AND] AS A PERSON. I BELIEVE SHE’S NOT AROUND IN TOWN ANY MORE, BUT SHE WAS PART OF THAT RURAL SCENE, WHERE YOU HAD A GREAT AMOUNT OF FREEDOM.” “I JUST [HAD], I BELIEVE, TWO OF MELISSA’S PIECES, THE PAINTING [WAS ONE], WHICH IS VERY BIG, BEAUTIFUL, AND PRETTY. ON THE BACK IT SAYS ‘AFTER CALGARY’. I’M NOT SURE WHAT THAT MEANS.” “[WE MET THE MALKAS’S] ONCE WE MOVED OUT TO BROXBURN. I DON’T KNOW IF THEY MOVED IN BEFOREHAND. THEY WERE [OUR] NEIGHBORS. MOM WAS RAISED ON A FARM IN SASKATCHEWAN, AND [MY PARENTS] KNEW HOW TO REACH OUT TO THE NEIGHBORS, AND MAKE FRIENDS, AND TAKE FOOD OVER AND VISIT…THEY WERE ALWAYS OUT VISITING.” “I KNOW [MY PARENTS] WOULD GO OUT, AND DO THE ART ELSEWHERE, OR SOME AT HOME. IT JUST SEEMED NATURAL THAT THEY WOULD DEAL WITH THEIR ARTIST FRIENDS…THAT WOULD HAVE BEEN WHEN I WAS VERY YOUNG.” FLAIG ELABORATED ON HIS PARENTS’ AVID INTEREST IN LOCAL ART, NOTING, “MOM AND DAD ALWAYS HAD ART IN THE HOUSE. THEY WERE ALWAYS DOING ART. I REMEMBER DAD DOING LARGE PLASTER SCULPTURES, IN THE BASEMENT, IN THE CITY, AND MOM WAS ALWAYS PAINTING AND THROWING POTS, AND DOING SOMETHING FUNNY OUT IN THE BACK YARD, ART-WISE. GROWING UP, I ASSUMED EVERYBODY HAD ART IN THE HOUSE, BUT I’VE REALIZED THAT’S NOT THE CASE. NOT EVERYBODY LIKES HAVING ART AROUND, ALTHOUGH [THERE IS EFFORT IN] FINDING ART THAT YOU LIKE, AND ACQUIRING IT, OR CREATING IT, AND KEEPING IT. THERE WAS ALWAYS SOMETHING DIFFERENT HANGING ON THE WALLS IN THE HOUSE. [MOM AND DAD] WERE ALWAYS MOVING IT AROUND. THESE THREE PAINTINGS [BY MIKE PISKO AND ERNEST RIETHMAN], I’M AWARE THAT THESE PEOPLE WERE FRIENDS OF MOM AND DAD. THEY WERE …ARTISTS. I DON’T KNOW MUCH ABOUT THEM OTHER THAN THAT THEY WOULD OFTEN GO OUT TO SKETCH, AND PAINT, AND THEIR NAMES ARE FAMILIAR TO ME. [THE ARTWORKS] MEANT SOMETHING TO [MY PARENTS], WHETHER THEY BOUGHT THEM OR THEY WERE JUST GIFTS FROM OTHER ARTISTS, I’LL NEVER KNOW, BUT THERE HAS OBVIOUSLY BEEN A LOT OF CARE AND EFFORT PUT INTO THE WORKS BY THE ARTISTS. I HAVE A LARGE NUMBER OF MY MOTHER’S PAINTINGS, BUT THERE ARE LOTS OF THOSE AROUND THE CITY, AND HER WORK IS WELL PRESERVED. THESE ONES…I KNOW THEY ARE LOCAL ARTISTS SOMEWHERE NOW.” FLAIG RECALLED HIS PARENTS AND THEIR HOME IN LETHBRIDGE, “I GREW UP IN TOWN, ON HENDERSON LAKE BOULEVARD. [MY PARENTS] MOVED OUT IN THE EARLY 1970S TO BROXBURN ROAD. SOME OF [THE PAINTINGS] I’D HAVE SEEN THERE AT HENDERSON LAKE BOULEVARD, AND THE REST WOULD HAVE BEEN ON THE FARM. THEY WOULD HAVE BEEN UP ON THE WALLS, OR DOWN IN THE BASEMENT. THINGS WERE ALWAYS MOVING AROUND, BUT THESE ARE PAINTINGS THAT ARE FAMILIAR TO ME. NOT THAT I PAID THAT MUCH ATTENTION TO THEM, BECAUSE THERE WERE ALWAYS PAINTINGS AROUND, AND I NEVER THOUGHT TO ASK.” “MIKE PISKO IS THE NAME THAT COMES [TO MIND ON ARTISTS MY MOM SPENT MORE TIME WITH]; HAS MORE PAINTINGS, MEMORY-WISE, FOR SURE. OUT ON BROXBURN ROAD, THAT’S WHEN THEY MET THE MALKAS’. MOM SPOKE FREQUENTLY OF MELISSA, AND I PROBABLY MET THEM IN PASSING, BECAUSE I WAS ON TO OTHER STUFF. BUT I THINK THAT, WHEREVER THEY WERE, THEY WOULD HAVE REACHED OUT AND GOT IN TOUCH WITH OTHER ARTISTS. PLUS, WHERE THEY WERE ON BROXBURN ROAD, IT WAS A PLACE WHERE WE COULD DO JUST ABOUT ANYTHING—BUILDING THINGS, TEARING THINGS DOWN, MAKING ART, BLOWING STUFF UP, AS KIDS DO. THERE WERE ALWAYS ANIMALS, SOME HORSES, AND ONE DISASTROUS ATTEMPT AT RAISING SHEEP BY MY FATHER. THEY WERE ALWAYS INTO SOMETHING.” ON HIS MOTIVATIONS FOR DONATING, FLAIG ELABORATED, “AS TIME GOES BY, WE FIND THE NEED TO TIDY UP AND GET READY FOR THE NEXT STAGE OF LIFE. PART OF IT IS FINDING ROOM FOR SOME OF THESE WORKS OF ART THAT HAVE BEEN IN MY HOUSE AND HAVE SURVIVED, SOMEWHAT MIRACULOUSLY, SINCE MOM AND DAD LEFT A LITTLE FAR AND I TOOK THEM OVER, AS WE WERE EMPTYING OUT THE PLACE. THEY’VE BEEN IN MY BASEMENT, UNAPPRECIATED, AND I SUPPOSE AT SOME RISK OF BEING FORGOTTEN, OR LOST, OR THROWN OUT. THEY DO HAVE SOME SENTIMENTAL VALUE FOR ME, AND I CAN APPRECIATE THE ARTWORK THAT IS IN THE PIECES, MYSELF, TO A LIMITED DEGREE.” “MOM AND DAD HAD REACHED THE END OF THE ROAD...AS BEING ABLE TO TAKE CARE OF THEIR FIVE ACRES…OUT ON BROXBURN ROAD. THESE WORKS WERE IN THEIR PLACE, AND, AS WE CLEANED THE PLACE OUT, I TOOK THEM AND PROTECTED THEM, AND SAVED THEM FROM THE BINS…I’M PUTTING THAT AT 2011.” ACCORDING TO LETHBRIDGE HERALD ARTICLES, MELISSA MALKAS WAS A SECOND GENERATION LETHBRIDGE ARTIST, THE DAUGHTER OF IRMA MALKAS (RODOWITZ) AND EGON MALKAS. MELISSA MALKAS GRADUATED FROM THE UNIVERSITY OF CALGARY IN 1986 WITH A DEGREE IN FINE ARTS, AND ALSO ATTENDED THE UNIVERSITY OF LETHBRIDGE. DURING HER CAREER, MALKAS EXHIBITED AT THE BOWMAN ARTS CENTRE WITH THE ALLIED ARTS COUNCIL OF LETHBRIDGE. MELISSA MALKAS EXHIBITED AS A SOLO ARTIST, AND WITH HER MOTHER IN 1996 AND 2003 AT THE BOWMAN ARTS CENTRE. MALKAS WAS AN INSTRUCTOR AT THE BOWMAN ARTS CENTRE FOR THE LETHBRIDGE ARTISTS CLUB IN 2005 AND 2010, TEACHING COURSES IN MIXED MEDIA WATERCOLOUR AND OILS. FOR MORE INFORMATION INCLUDING THE FULL INTERVIEW TRANSCRIPTION AND LETHBRIDGE HERALD ARTICLES, PLEASE SEE THE PERMANENT FILE P20190006001-GA.
Catalogue Number
P20190006004
Acquisition Date
2019-03
Collection
Museum
Images
Less detail
Other Name
PEN & INK; WHEN THE REDMAN SPEAKS
Date Range From
1990
Date Range To
2000
Material Type
Artifact
Materials
PAPER, GLASS, ALUMINUM
Catalogue Number
P20010101000
  1 image  
Material Type
Artifact
Other Name
PEN & INK; WHEN THE REDMAN SPEAKS
Date Range From
1990
Date Range To
2000
Materials
PAPER, GLASS, ALUMINUM
No. Pieces
1
Height
2.2
Length
61.5
Width
49.0
Description
BLACK INK ON A WHITE BACKGROUND. PICTURES A NATIVE IN TRADITIONAL DRESS, SITTING ON A HORSE, HOLDING A SPEAR IN ONE HAND. HORSE IS ATOP A KNOLL AND VISIBLE IN THE DISTANCE IS SMOKE FROM A FIRE. IN FOREGROUND IS A BUFFALO SKULL. THERE IS ALSO A BIRD IN THE SKY IN THE BACKGROUND. IN BOTTOM RIGHT HAND CORNER IS "ALLEN WELLS". DRAWING IS FRAMED BY GRAY AND WHITE MATTES. IN BOTTOM CENTER OF WHITE MATTE IS A METAL LABEL THAT READS "WHEN THE REDMAN SPEAKS". DRAWING IS IN A BLACK PAINTED ALUMINUM FRAME WITH A GLASS INSERT; HAS A CARDBOARD BACKING.
Subjects
ART
Historical Association
FINE ARTS
History
ACQUIRED BY WILMA WOOD, DIRECTOR OF THE GALT MUSEUM & ARCHIVES FROM 1999 TO 2002. DRAWING IS AN ORIGINAL AND ONE OF A KIND; THE ARTIST, ALLEN WELLS, STATES HE RARELY MAKES PRINTS OF HIS WORKS SO THAT EVERY BUYER KNOWS THEY HAVE SOMETHING ORIGINAL. WELLS BELIEVES WORK WAS DONE CA. 1995, BUT CANNOT BE SURE AS HE DOES NOT DATE HIS WORK SO THAT THE VIEWER CAN MAKE THEIR OWN INTERPRETATIONS. ARTIST EXPLAINS THAT TITLE OF WORK REFERS TO THE SMOKE SIGNAL IN THE BACKGROUND OF THE PICTURE, WHICH IS THE TRADITIONAL FORM OF COMMUNICATION BETWEEN NATIVE PEOPLES. WELLS IS A MEMBER OF THE BLOOD TRIBE, LIVING SOUTHWEST OF STAND OFF AND HAS DONE ART ALL HIS LIFE. HE CURRENTLY DOES ARTWORK FOR SOUTHERN MONUMENT AND FOR THE BLOOD TRIBE (CHILDREN'S SERVICES; EDUCATION). ARTIST MAKES PINS OUT OF STONE WHICH HAVE SOLD AT RODEOS AND CRAFT SHOWS THROUGHOUT THE WESTERN UNITED STATES AND CANADA. WELLS DEPICTS NATIVE CULTURE AND THE SPORT OF RODEO AS "THESE THINGS ARE THE CENTRE OF [HIS] LIFE AND [HIS] WORK SHOWS [HE] IS PROUD TO BE A NATIVE". ONE OF HIS PROUDEST ACHIEVEMENTS IS HE HAD HIS LOGO CHOSEN FOR THE 6TH WORLD INDIGENOUS PEOPLE'S CONFERENCE ON EDUCATION, HELD IN 2002 IN MORLEY, ALBERTA. HE ALSO ILLUSTRATED THE BOOK KIPAITAPIIWAHSINNOUNI: ALCOHOL & DRUG ABUSE EDUCATION PROGRAM, AND CREATED CARTOONS FOR THE BLOOD TRIBE NEWS. ARTIST DOES VARIOUS ART SHOWS BUT HAS ONLY HAD HIS WORK IN A GALLERY ONCE. SEE HARD COPY FOR FOR MORE INFO.
Catalogue Number
P20010101000
Acquisition Date
2003-07
Collection
Museum
Images
Less detail
Other Name
PAINTING, "CHINA TOWN"
Date Range From
1994
Date Range To
1995
Material Type
Artifact
Materials
WOOD, CANVAS
Catalogue Number
P20020027000
  1 image  
Material Type
Artifact
Other Name
PAINTING, "CHINA TOWN"
Date Range From
1994
Date Range To
1995
Materials
WOOD, CANVAS
No. Pieces
1
Length
99
Width
88
Description
FRAMED ACRYLIC ON CANVAS DEPICTING FRONT OF CHINESE FREE MASONS' BUILDING IN DOWNTOWN LETHBRIDGE CHINATOWN. DOMINANT USE OF ORANGE, RED AND BLUE. YELLOW SKY. PARKING SIGN IN FRONT. SIGNED LOWER RIGHT CORNER "R. WEBB". UNDATED.
Subjects
ART
Historical Association
FINE ARTS
History
MUSEUM PURCHASED FOR $720 AT AUCTION BY MUSEUM DIRECTOR/ CURATOR WILMA WOOD ON BEHALF OF CITY'S ARTS ACQUISITION PROGRAM. WORK WAS PART OF BOWMAN'S 2001 "DOWNTOWN LETHBRIDGE" EXHIBITION. WORK PAINTED BY LOCAL ARTIST ROBERT WEBB. WEBB RECEIVED HIS BFA FROM THE UNIVERSITY OF LETHBRIDGE IN 1973 AND A DIPLOMA IN FINE ARTS FROM ALBERTA SCHOOL OF ART IN 1968. HE HAS BEEN ACTIVE IN EXHIBITING HIS WORKS IN LETHBRIDGE OVER THE PAST TEN YEARS. FOR MORE INFORMATION PLEASE REFER TO HARDCOPY. *UPDATE* IN 2014 COLLECTIONS ASSISTANT JANE EDMUNDSON CONDUCTED A SURVEY OF ART OBJECTS. THE FOLLOWING BRIEF HISTORY OF THE STRUCTURE DEPICTED IN THIS PAINTING, THE CHINESE FREEMASONS' BUILDING, WAS DEVELOPED WITH INFORMATION FROM THE BROCHURE 'LETHBRIDGE HISTORICAL WALKING TOUR' (PRODUCED AND PUBLISHED BY THE GALT MUSEUM, 2000) AND THE PLAQUE ON THE BUILDING DESIGNATING ITS SIGNIFICANT HISTORICAL STATUS (DEDICATED IN 2010 BY THE CITY OF LETHBRIDGE AND THE LETHBRIDGE HISTORICAL SOCIETY). THE CHEE KUNG TONG, OR CHINESE FREEMASONS FRATERNITY, CANADA'S OLDEST CHINESE ORGANIZATION, WAS FORMED IN BARKERVILLE, BRITISH COLUMBIA IN 1862 DURING A GOLD MINING BOOM. THE LETHBRIDGE BRANCH WAS INCORPORATED IN 1922, AND FUNDS WERE RAISED THROUGHOUT CANADA SO THE BUILDING IN LETHBRIDGE COULD BE RAISED UNDER THE TRUSTEESHIP OF JOE FONG, JUNG SHUN YEN, AND MAH SHUE. THE BUILDING WAS DEDICATED IN OCTOBER 1924 DURING THE CHINESE FREEMASONS SECOND CANADIAN CONVENTION, WHICH WAS HELD IN LETHBRIDGE. THE UPPER FLOOR OF THE BUILDING WAS USED FOR FREEMASONS' MEETINGS AND AS A CHINESE SCHOOL FOR THE CHILDREN OF LODGE MEMBERS. THE CHINESE FREEMASONS AND THE KUO MIN TANG CHINESE NATIONALIST LEAGUE (WHOSE HEADQUARTERS BUILDING WAS ACROSS THE AVENUE) FORMED THE TWO MOST IMPORTANT, YET IDEOLOGICALLY OPPOSITE, SOCIETIES IN LETHBRIDGE'S CHINESE COMMUNITY BETWEEN 1905 AND 1925. A SENSE OF COMMUNITY THRIVED IN LETHBRIDGE' CHINATOWN WELL INTO THE 1930S, DESPITE THE REPEALING OF DISCRIMNATORY BYLAWS OF THE EARLY 1910S THAT HAD RESTRICTED CHINESE-OWNED BUSINESSES TO THE FIVE BLOCK AREA BETWEEN 1ST AVENUE, 4TH STREET AND 6TH AVENUE SOUTH. THROUGHOUT THE MID TO LATE 20TH CENTURY, THE POPULATION IN CHINATOWN DECLINED AND THE BUILDINGS HAVE BEEN LARGELY ABANDONED OR LEASED TO NEW BUSINESSES. THE CHINESE NATIONALIST LEAGUE BUILDING WAS DEMOLISHED IN NOVEMBER 2011. AT THE TIME OF THIS SURVEY, THE CHINESE FREEMASONS BUILDING IS STILL STANDING.
Catalogue Number
P20020027000
Acquisition Date
2002-07
Collection
Museum
Images
Less detail
Date Range From
1980
Date Range To
1990
Material Type
Artifact
Materials
WOOD, STONE (QUARTZ?)
Catalogue Number
P19970090002
Material Type
Artifact
Date Range From
1980
Date Range To
1990
Materials
WOOD, STONE (QUARTZ?)
No. Pieces
1
Height
11.2
Length
16.3
Width
6.8
Description
BLACK LACQUERED WOOD CARVING. CONSISTS OF ADULT AND BABY WATER BUFFALO, BOTH MOUNTED WITH NAILS TO BASE. SITTING ON ADULT BUFFALO IS FIGURE CARVED FROM GOLD COLOURED GEMSTONE, PLAYING FLUTE. DISC-LIKE HAT HELD IN PLACE BY FISHING LINE TIED AROUND FLUTE.
Subjects
ART
Historical Association
DECORATIVE ARTS
History
GIVEN TO DONOR BY PARENTS IN VIETNAM. DAT TRAN WAS BORN IN HUE, AND HIS WIFE GIANG MAC, WAS BORN IN PHAN THIET, VIETNAM. BOTH CAME TO CANADA INDIVIDUALLY IN 1979 AS REFUGEES, AND MET AT A WEDDING IN LETHBRIDGE, AND WERE LATER MARRIED ON JULY 1, 1989. TOGETHER THEY OPENED THE SAIGONESE RESTAURANT EIGHT YEARS AGO, THE ONLY AUTHENTIC VIETMANESE RESTAURANT IN LETHBRIDGE. *UPDATE* IN 2014 COLLECTIONS ASSISTANT JANE EDMUNDSON CONDUCTED A SURVEY OF ART OBJECTS. THE FOLLOWING INFORMATION ABOUT THE DONOR, DAT TRAN, WAS DEVELOPED FROM AN INTERVIEW WITH TRAN IN THE FEBRUARY 7, 1992 ISSUE OF THE LETHBRIDGE HERALD. TRAN WAS BORN IN 1958 IN HUE, VIETNAM, AND HIS FATHER WAS IN THE SOUTH VIETNAMESE MILITARY. AS A RESULT OF HIS FATHER'S MILITARY AFFILIATION, THE FAMILY WAS PERSECUTED BY THE NORTH VIETNAMESE COMMUNIST GOVERNMENT WHEN THEY SEIZED CONTROL OF THE SOUTH IN 1975. TRAN WAS FORCED TO LEAVE HIS SCHOOLING AT THE UNIVERSITY OF SAIGON, AND THE FAMILY WAS CLOSELY WATCHED BY THE GOVERNMENT. IN 1979, TRAN AND SOME FRIENDS FOUND AN ORGANIZATION WILLING TO HELP THEM ESCAPE THE COUNTRY BY BOAT IF THEY PAID FOR THE COST OF FUEL AND FOOD. 77 PEOPLE SPENT THREE DAYS AND FOUR NIGHTS ABOARD A 12-METRE BOAT UNTIL THE BOAT BEGAN TO LEAK AND THEY WERE RESCUED BY A WEST GERMAN SHIP. THEY WERE TAKEN TO A REFUGEE CAMP IN MALAYSIA, HOUSING OVER 15,000 VIETNAMESE, WHERE TRAN WAITED FOR THREE MONTHS BEFORE RECEIVING HIS PLACEMENT IN CANADA. TRAN'S DESIGNATED CITY WAS LETHBRIDGE, WHERE HE WOULD MEET HIS FUTURE WIFE, GIANG MAC, ALSO A VIETNAMESE REFUGEE. THE COUPLE HAVE BEEN PART OWNERS AND OPERATORS OF THE SAIGONESE RESTAURANT SINCE 1990. SEE PERMANENT FILE FOR HARDCOPY OF NEWSPAPER ARTICLE.
Catalogue Number
P19970090002
Acquisition Date
1997-09
Collection
Museum
Less detail
Other Name
MOSAIC PLAQUE
Date Range From
1980
Date Range To
1990
Material Type
Artifact
Materials
WOOD
Catalogue Number
P19970090001
  1 image  
Material Type
Artifact
Other Name
MOSAIC PLAQUE
Date Range From
1980
Date Range To
1990
Materials
WOOD
No. Pieces
2
Height
1.1
Length
40.2
Width
20.2
Description
2 BLACK LACQUERED HANGINGS WITH A MOSAIC SCENE, ONE WITH A BOAT IN THE BOTTOM LEFT HAND CORNER AND TWO FIGURES IN THE BACKGROUND, AND OTHER HAS FOUR FIGURES WORKING IN A FIELD, ONE ON A COW. HANGINGS ARE MADE OF LACQUERED COVERED WOOD, MADE WITH A MOSAIC OF TINY PIECES OF MATERIAL. SURFACE IS SLIGHTLY WORN, BUT OVERALL ARE IN GOOD CONDITON. EACH HAS A SMALL HOOK ON THE BACK TO HANG ITEM.
Subjects
ART
Historical Association
DECORATIVE ARTS
History
GIVEN TO DONOR BY PARENTS IN VIETNAM. DAT TRAN WAS BORN IN HUE, AND HIS WIFE GIANG MAC, WAS BORN IN PHAN THIET, VIETNAM. BOTH CAME TO CANADA INDIVIDUALLY IN 1979 AS REFUGEES, AND MET AT A WEDDING IN LETHBRIDGE, AND WERE LATER MARRIED ON JULY 1, 1989. TOGETHER THEY OPENED THE SAIGONESE RESTAURANT. *UPDATE* IN 2014 COLLECTIONS ASSISTANT JANE EDMUNDSON CONDUCTED A SURVEY OF ART OBJECTS. THE FOLLOWING INFORMATION ABOUT THE DONOR, DAT TRAN, WAS DEVELOPED FROM AN INTERVIEW WITH TRAN IN THE FEBRUARY 7, 1992 ISSUE OF THE LETHBRIDGE HERALD. TRAN WAS BORN IN 1958 IN HUE, VIETNAM, AND HIS FATHER WAS IN THE SOUTH VIETNAMESE MILITARY. AS A RESULT OF HIS FATHER'S MILITARY AFFILIATION, THE FAMILY WAS PERSECUTED BY THE NORTH VIETNAMESE COMMUNIST GOVERNMENT WHEN THEY SEIZED CONTROL OF THE SOUTH IN 1975. TRAN WAS FORCED TO LEAVE HIS SCHOOLING AT THE UNIVERSITY OF SAIGON, AND THE FAMILY WAS CLOSELY WATCHED BY THE GOVERNMENT. IN 1979, TRAN AND SOME FRIENDS FOUND AN ORGANIZATION WILLING TO HELP THEM ESCAPE THE COUNTRY BY BOAT IF THEY PAID FOR THE COST OF FUEL AND FOOD. 77 PEOPLE SPENT THREE DAYS AND FOUR NIGHTS ABOARD A 12-METRE BOAT UNTIL THE BOAT BEGAN TO LEAK AND THEY WERE RESCUED BY A WEST GERMAN SHIP. THEY WERE TAKEN TO A REFUGEE CAMP IN MALAYSIA, HOUSING OVER 15,000 VIETNAMESE, WHERE TRAN WAITED FOR THREE MONTHS BEFORE RECEIVING HIS PLACEMENT IN CANADA. TRAN'S DESIGNATED CITY WAS LETHBRIDGE, WHERE HE WOULD MEET HIS FUTURE WIFE, GIANG MAC, ALSO A VIETNAMESE REFUGEE. THE COUPLE HAVE BEEN PART OWNERS AND OPERATORS OF THE SAIGONESE RESTAURANT SINCE 1990. SEE PERMANENT FILE FOR HARDCOPY OF NEWSPAPER ARTICLE.
Catalogue Number
P19970090001
Acquisition Date
1997-09
Collection
Museum
Images
Less detail

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