In 2015 Prairie Wind & Silver Sage proudly hosted the second year of its artist residency program in partnership with Grasslands National Park, funded by the Saskatchewan Arts Board and SaskCulture/Saskatchewan Lotteries. Out of a wide range of excellent applications, the residency selection committee announced five artist residencies that took place between between June and September.
Carolyn Caldwell is an experienced exhibiting landscape artist and teacher who works in pastels, oils, and acrylics. She is passionate about preserving natural landscapes and works with land trusts to protect areas of natural beauty. On June 13 Carolyn Caldwell led a plein air painting workshop Celebrating the Vast Grasslands and Landforms in Grasslands National Park. And she offered a one-hour drop-in outdoor painting workshop for park visitors. During her residency, Carolyn Caldwell also painted near natural vistas in Grasslands National Park, near the sign that said Please Talk to the Artist at Work! See Carolyn Caldwell at www.carolyncaldwell.com
Bonnie A. Conly is a multi-disciplinary artist. She is an active member of Saskatchewan’s art community and is dedicated to a visual art practice while teaching full time in Saskatoon. Bonnie A. Conly has shown her work in selected galleries across Canada. During her residency Bonnie hosted a number of Post Card Trails flexible nature walks, when she led visitors to create postcards using sketching kits provided by the residency program. You can view and purchase Bonnie’s original hand-drawn post cards at Prairie Wind & Silver Sage.
Adam Hill is a folk/roots music singer, a guitar picker, a songwriter, a bassist, a recording engineer and a composer of contemporary classical music. He creates music with pencils, paper, computers, and a variety of instruments, and has written songs, symphonies, and suites and released three albums of new-timey music. He also performs creations of other songwriters and composers. During his residency Adam Hill hosted a number of UNEXPECTED MUSICAL ENCOUNTERS and created a musical piece constructed from recordings of conversations, found sounds, acoustic instrument and electronic manipulators that addresses the impact of dark sky, which will be installed at Prairie Wind & Silver Sage. On Saturday August 15, Adam gave a terrific CONCERT and then people played and sang and danced at the OPEN MIC that followed. Adam Hill’s website is adamhillmusic.com
Steven Ross Smith is a Canadian poet, sound poet, fiction writer, teacher, arts journalist and arts activist. He has published over a dozen books and his work has appeared in countless periodicals, special editions, booklets, chapbooks and pamphlets as well as on CD. His five volumes of fluttertongue poems (the sixth, Emanations, is forthcoming with Bookthug in fall 2015) have been described as a dance with words that pushes the boundaries of both language and poetry. He has extensive experience leading programs, workshops and residencies and has been a long time contributor to Saskatchewan’s writing community. During his residency, Steven Ross Smith led WORD-WALK-WRITING writing workshops for students at the Val Marie School as well as a one-day, preregistered WORD-WALK-WORKSHOP writing workshop in Grasslands National Park and Val Marie open to writers in all genres and of all levels of experience. He also offered PERSONAL ONE-ON-ONE CONSULTATIONS with writers. In addition to his scheduled activities, Steven hosted an Open Mic at the Val Marie Hotel on September 11, with WORDS AND MUSIC contributed by many talented performers in Val Marie. Steven Ross Smith’s website is fluttertongue.ca
On Saturday September 26, the skilled and talented Shaw Street Collective presented the world premiere of the ensemble’s new musical work written in Val Marie and the Grasslands, with contributions from the students of Val Marie School and from local photographers. The Collective also performed pieces from their repertoire of original compositions, improvisations and classics. Further performances of this concert were then heard on tour from Saskatchewan to Ontario after the residency.
The Shaw Street Collective is a flexible classical music ensemble who record and perform everything from classics to experimental and new pieces. The music of The Shaw Street Collective is diverse, exploratory, and always filled with passion and excitement. The combination of instruments – trombone, trumpet, voice, and percussion, with guest artists providing added depth – gives the ensemble a fresh sound while allowing lots of room to do justice to classics of Western art music. During the Shaw Street Collective’s residency, its members offered sound walks, natural improv, improv concerts and sound and image clinics for schools, met with local photographers, sang and played at church on Sunday, and worked the bar for Val Marie’s annual September Rodeo. More on Shaw Street Collective at shawstreetcollective.ca