ABOVE: Winston Leathers. Periodic Dynamic Field, 1969. serigraph on paper (4/10), 64 x 45 cm (unframed). Collection of University of Winnipeg; gift of Winston & Kathleen Leathers.
WINSTON LEATHERS: IN THE MOMENT
Curated by Jennifer Gibson and Robert Epp
March 3 to April 2, 2005, Gallery 1C03, The University of Winnipeg
March 4 to April 1, 2005, Gallery One One One, University of Manitoba
Thursday, March 3, from 4 to 6 PM, Gallery 1C03
Friday, March 4, from 3 to 6 PM, Gallery One One One
Panel Discussion: Wednesday, March 9, 7 PM, Gallery One One One.
Public talk by Patricia E. Bovey: Monday, March 14, 12:30 PM, Gallery 1C03
Gallery 1C03 at the University of Winnipeg and Gallery One One One at the University of Manitoba are pleased to present the joint exhibition Winston Leathers: In The Moment. In The Moment acknowledges the generous donations of artwork to Gallery 1C03 and Gallery One One One by the late Manitoba artist Winston Leathers (1932-2004). An artist whose career spanned half a century, Leathers was known as a painter, printmaker, poet and art educator. Ever the innovator, Leathers employed various techniques and media in his artmaking. In The Moment highlights the successful outcome of a few of the artists experimental bodies of work.
Gallery 1C03 will feature prints from his Cosmic Variations series of the early-1970s and images produced immediately prior to that series. In these pieces, Leathers applied fluorographic and metallic inksat that time, new on the marketto his bold, abstract graphic designs. Several of the artworks on display incorporate calligraphic markings that reflect Leathers abiding interest in the teachings of Zen philosophy.
Gallery One One One will showcase collographs, a printmaking technique that Leathers and fellow artist John Kenneth Esler are credited with developing in this country. In these works from the mid-1960s, Leathers used found materials that he affixed to a printing plate, resulting in highly-textured and emotionally intense abstract compositions. A second body of work, Cibachrome prints from the Hidden Landscape series, will also be exhibited at Gallery One One One. These pieces were produced in collaboration with photographer Wayne Foster in the late-1980s. They combine light, glass, fused metals, liquids and macrophotography to create colourful abstractions.
The public is invited to the opening receptions and related events that include a panel discussion at Gallery One One One on Wednesday, March 9 from 7 to 8 p.m. Panelists will be In The Moment co-curators Robert Epp and Jennifer Gibson, Gallery One One One Director Cliff Eyland, art historian Dr. Oliver Botar and photographer Wayne Foster. On Monday, March 14 at 12:30 p.m., art historian and former Director of the Winnipeg Art Gallery Patricia E. Bovey will deliver a public talk on Leathers work at Gallery 1C03.
Winston Leathers: In The Moment will be accompanied by a CD-ROM publication that includes an introduction by Epp and Gibson, an interview with the artist by Cliff Eyland, and essays by art historians Dr. Ann Davis and Dr. Oliver Botar. Gallery 1C03 and Gallery One One One gratefully acknowledge financial assistance for this exhibition from the Manitoba Arts Council.
WINSTON LEATHERS: IN THE MOMENT
In The Moment is a joint exhibition between Gallery 1C03 at the University of Winnipeg and Gallery One One One at the University of Manitoba. The exhibition acknowledges the generous donations of artwork to the respective university collections by the late Manitoba artist Winston Leathers (1932-2004). Leathers had a clear idea of what he wished to donate. He wanted to endow each institution with separate and distinct bodies of work to strengthen the collections.
In 2001 Leathers gave Gallery 1C03 28 pieces produced between 1963 and 1983, including several prints from his important Cosmic Variations series of the early-1970s. The Gallery 1C03 exhibition highlights work from Cosmic Variations as well as images produced immediately prior to that series. Many of these works employ innovative fluorographic and metallic inks that were intended to be viewed under black light conditions as well as regular incandescent lighting. They were created following a printmaking fellowship in England that was awarded to Leathers in 1967-68 by the Canada Council for the Arts.
A number of the images displayed in Gallery 1C03 incorporate calligraphic markings. They reflect Leathers abiding interest in the teachings of Zen philosophy, with its emphasis on being fully present in the moment and discovering ones own inner nature.
The success of the Cosmic Variations prints spawned spin-offs that enabled Leathers to showcase his strong graphic designs on a much larger scale. In 1972 the artist oversaw the execution of a massive outdoor mural painted on the north wall of the former Odeon Theatre in downtown Winnipeg as part of the "Artwalls" public art project. Two years later the architectural firm IKOY Group commissioned Leathers to create the wall-size print Cosmic Variation. This piece is displayed prominently in the Gallery 1C03 exhibition.
Throughout his career, Leathers constantly experimented in his work with different techniques, media and technologies. In the 1960s Leathers and fellow University of Manitoba School of Art graduate John Kenneth Esler pioneered the collograph printmaking technique in Canada. From various found materials affixed to a printing plate, Leathers produced embossed abstract prints that possess a deep emotional intensity and textural richness. In 2002 Leathers donated 25 collograph prints and 5 collograph plates to Gallery One One One. The Gallery One One One exhibition features a selection of these exceptional prints produced in the mid-1960s and examples of the accompanying plates.
The natural environment was a driving force in Leathers abstraction. His exploration of the abstract forms found in nature continued with The Hidden Landscape series. In the late-1980s Leathers collaborated with photographer Wayne Foster, who used macrophotography techniques to create Cibachrome prints from mineral elements and liquids fused between glass plates. Leathers fascination with light, colour and form and his quest toward pure abstraction in his art are evident in The Hidden Landscape series, which was originally presented at the University of Manitoba Faculty of Architecture in 1989. The Gallery One One One exhibition includes a selection of the 16 prints from this series, donated by Leathers.
Jennifer Gibson, Curator, Gallery 1C03
Robert Epp, Gallerist, Gallery One One One
Special thanks to Kathleen Leathers, Wayne Foster, Claude de Forest, Cliff Eyland, Oliver Botar, Ann Davis, Patricia E. Bovey, Sherna and Gerald Posner, The University of Manitoba
Faculty of Architecture, Collin Zipp, Glen Johnson, and the Manitoba Arts Council.
1st Floor, Centennial Hall
The University of Winnipeg
515 Portage Avenue
Winnipeg, MB R3B 2E9
Gallery Hours: Monday to Friday: Noon to 4 PM, Saturday: 1 to 4 PM
Information: Jennifer Gibson, Curator, tel: 204.786.9253
PLEASE NOTE: Gallery 1C03 and Gallery One One One will be closed Good Friday, March 25. Gallery One One One will be closed Easter Monday, March 28.
The Winston Leathers: In The Moment
CD-ROM is a co-publication of Gallery One One and Gallery 1C03 that includes information about other Gallery One One One projects.
Gallery One One One, School of Art, Main Floor, FitzGerald Building, University of Manitoba Fort Garry campus, Winnipeg, MB, CANADA R3T 2N2,. Gallery Hours: Noon to 4 PM (weekdays only).
TEL:204 474-9322 FAX:474-7605
For information please contact Robert Epp