The Simons Collection
With its ideal location in the very heart of Ottawa, our second Ontario store marks a meeting between modernity and retail’s rich history in Canada. Completely made of glass, the store’s top floor looks like a crystal box set atop the existing heritage building, which has been magnificently restored to preserve its architectural value. Inside, fashion fuses with art: Torrential Red, a marvellous sculpture by Canadian artist Shayne Dark, hangs in the store’s centre. In addition, our partnership with the Ottawa Art Gallery allows us to display the work of regional artists, highlighting our commitment to supporting local creativity. (Text sourced from Simons)
By Your Side (left) & Clear Blue Water Awaits (right), 2017
“Recent scientific studies explain that the euphoria we sense at water’s edge may be due in part to the power of negative ions, generated by the pounding surf, which helps increase levels of serotonin in the body and thereby elevate our mood.
As children, we use sticks to draw in the sand, the sand becomes a metaphor for both memory and the passage of time, as our markings are erased, highlighting our impermanence. As an adult, I find myself constantly returning to the shore as a tremendous source of peace and inspiration.
When I begin a shoreline landscape, I rarely have a preconceived notion of where the creative process will take me. First I part the canvas into intersecting planes using my selected collage elements. Then I apply a multitude of acrylic mediums, allow the paint to yield to various textures and surfaces. In the end, the pigment reacts accordingly. The process is a combination of trial & error, random & controlled, hidden & obvious. My goal is to give tangible expression to landscapes that exist for me both in memory and imagination.”
Acrylic mixed media on panel
The Impossible, ed of 10, 2016 (left) Underbrush I, ed of 10, 2016 (right)
“Whitney Lewis-Smith is a Canadian photo-based artist. Her work uses a combination of historic and modern photographic processes as a means to speak on contemporary topics, most recently discussing consumerism, commodity accessibility, and globalization’s impact on the environment. By referencing Dutch golden era floral tableaus, Whitney highlights the evolution of humanity’s relationship with the planet. A painting from the 17th century displaying various flora and fauna that could never have existed together has now become a reality to almost anyone at the tap of a button. Her seemingly living moving scenes are made predominantly using insects, animals, and plants that have died, but this only becomes apparent upon close inspection. The result is a subtle tension, engaging the viewer’s fascinations and fears. Lewis-Smith challenges viewers’ distance from the ecological; her pieces evoke childlike curiosity while simultaneously directing us to consider the profound environmental changes we are giving rise to.”
Whitney Lewis-Smith is represented by Galerie St-Laurent+Hill, 293 Dalhousie St, Ottawa, ON K1N 7E5
Hopping Croakers [Diptych]
“Self-taught artist Natalie Bruvels often tests the boundaries and notions of beauty through her paintings. She paints the human body with vibrant colours and sometimes indiscernible anatomy (fitting as she has a degree in biology). Natalie lives and works in Ottawa.
Active in the local arts scene, Natalie has performed performance pieces for Nuit Blanche and has exhibited in many group and solo shows. Her paintings have been selected for Ottawa’s Timeraiser, and she was shortlisted for the 100 Painters of Tomorrow juried publication. Her work can be found in many private collections.”
“Born out of a pragmatic yet playful approach, Natalie Bruvels’ Lovers’ Imbroglio presents artwork existing in various states of duality. A continuation of her previous series Goodbye, Lover, Bruvels resurfaces old paintings made by her ex-partner with her own, at once causing the destruction of the past and creation of the present.
While the action behind her work can be initially seen as vengeful, the choice of depicting near abstracted figures in erotic scenes was one made purposefully by Bruvels, effectively “remembering the best while doing the worst.” The psychotropic effects of lust and love, however fleeting, are to be celebrated as proof of life.”
Painting, oil on canvas
(Curatorial text: Studio Sixty Six)
Natalie Bruvels is represented by Studio Sixty Six, 858 Bank St. Suite 101, 2nd Level, Ottawa, Ontario K1S 3W3
Birch Tree (30) , 2010
“I was born in St. John’s, Newfoundland, and raised in both St. John’s and Ottawa. I have previously attended Fanshawe College in London, Ontario, where I received my Diploma in Fine Arts, and The University of Ottawa where I received my Bachelor of Fine Arts.
In the past I have worked within a number of different mediums including painting, drawing, collage, and photography, sometimes working in one medium at a time, sometimes with mixed medium works.
In my current work, I have simplified the materials used to acrylics on canvas. Within such confines I have also slowly been narrowing the choice of palette in an attempt to combine and explore elements of minimalism with both representational and non-representational abstraction, expressionism, and landscape, examining connections between image, idea, material and process. I work each canvas over and over to achieve a final image that developed not solely from predetermined ideas, notions, or images but combining these, too, with the process of painting.
The source material and content of my current work comes from a variety of sources, including process, appropriated imagery, photography, life experiences, and memory.”
Acrylic on canvas.
Wabi Sabi Agnes Martin
“Accumulations obsess me. The number of stars in the sky, the number of carbon dioxide molecules in the atmosphere and the number of people on the planet are the impetus for my work. My latest work investigates the ideas of presence, accumulation and proliferation.
The current drawings and paintings are the latest manifestation of works that include aspects of accumulation. Earlier works include installations and sculpture that also include accumulations of text, organic materials and objects reflecting my interest in the social condition. The artworks reflect the commitment of time and perseverance in the collecting of gestural marks or manufacturing objects.”
Ink on paper.
“Heidi Conrod was born in Montreal in 1970. She completed her BSc in Biology in 1994 at the University of Ottawa. She studied painting and printmaking at the Ottawa School of art and at the University of Ottawa. Heidi has exhibited her work at galleries in Gatineau, Ottawa, Toronto, Calgary, Halifax and Vancouver. Her work can be found in numerous private and public collections.
Heidi’s work ranges from abstracted landscapes, to intimate and ethereal portraits, drawing, and printmaking. The subject of her work is found as much in their technique as in the depicted images. As she paints, ideas, thoughts impressions are built up and then broken down. Working primarily in oils, alternating layers of paint, glaze and wax, adding and subtracting, allowing for the unpredictable qualities of the medium to create an alchemic tension where deeper levels of meaning are slowly revealed. Her work is intuitive and compassionate. The scenes she paints do not exist per se. Instead they are created from various sights the artist has observed and felt, distilled and absorbed. Her impressions are abstractions of nature and the human condition. Heidi Conrod has developed a unique way of examining the world around her and extracting a poetic beauty from her observations.” (source: http://www.enrichedbreadartists.com/members/conrod.htm)
Oil, oil stick and wax on canvas