THE REGINA 5: studies on time, identity, and creative production.

Dye blue is an interdisciplinary artist’s/ curatorial project, exploring textural/ visual links between nnarratives of history and the formation of artistic identity.

At first a colour caught my imagination. Not any colour, but the very particular colour, texture of blue paint on a painting by Roy Kiyooka. When this blue would not leave me, but clung for days after I’d seen it, I wondered what could possibly connect me with it? Between myself and Kiyooka was an impossible wall of time, space and aesthetic distance. Then a story began unfolding in my mind. It formed as a line: beginning perhaps in the laste 1950s with the Emma Lake Artists’ Work-shops in Saskatchewan, and then stretching through the work and careers of Ron Bloore, Ted Godwin, Ken Lochhead, Art McKay, Doug Morton, and others, to Toronto, and then fainnally to me.  In this configuration Kiyooka’s blue acts like a tattoo.  Its brightness stained through, even when obscured. However, the DYE BLUE project begins not only with Kiyooka but with a visible event: the 1961 National Gallery of Canada exhibiion Five Painters from Regina/ Cinq Peintres de Regina. It starts there, crossing time and geography kinetically. In this way, DYE BLUE begins not only with an historical exhibition of paintings, but with myself. It begins with both the story and author because clearly, history is created and recreated in every act of looking.

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The Dye Blue project can be found online here.


Original research on the Art Gallery of York University (AGYU) and Faculty of Fine Arts (FFA) Art Collections published in Verrall, K. 1998-1999. Dyeblue: Studies on Time, Identity and Creative Production (online multimedia publication and CD ROM produced with financial assistance from the AGYU and the Faculty of Graduate Studies York University) and Verrall, K. 1999. Assessment of the Art Gallery of York University’s collection of 1950s and 1960s artworks, in Report to the Board of Directors of the Art Gallery of York University, prepared by Prof. Joyce Zemans. Toronto: York University. Findings included my discovery of an original and undocumented painting by Canadian artist Roy Kiyooka.