Where We Wandered
Tim Haley and Robin Mayor are presenting their collaborative exhibition “Where We Wandered”, at Artful : The Gallery in Courtenay, BC. These two accomplished artists differ in their artistic production; Haley’s primary focus is figurative sculpture while Mayor anchors himself in landscape. The combination of two- and three-dimensional work can present an intriguing challenge, utilizing the liminal space between realms to create a dynamic relationship, in this case between person and place.
Mayor’s interest in landscape goes well beyond the representational; he only recently identifies himself as a landscape painter. Seeing the world as context through which he filters his experience extends to the very surface on which he paints. His cutting and collage of the canvas brings the painting surface itself into his exploration of environment. Mayor’s references to historical and cultural contexts adds complexity to these works. Mayor’s large canvas “Clearcut”, with strong diagonals of broken logs and stumps, references Paolo Uccello’s (1435-1460) Battle of San Romano, with its lances, standards, horses, and battleground chaos, and blends with the current narrative of Mayor’s life, seeking accommodation.
Moving beyond purely representational indicators – a tree, a duck, the sea – the filters of Mayor’s intelligence offer an expansion beyond the identification and recognition of things; allowing our sight to connect with our imaginations. Mayor’s purpose in painting is to connect with what an environment means, to initiate contact with the viewer, and inspire a deeper attention than simply looking. Mayor clarifies (or disrupts) meaning by filtering the irrelevant and inconsequential from his vision. This process matters the most while he is painting; his fascination with the quality and essence of paint always holds over and above the image he is working with. If he deems the effort successful, he can let go and leave the work to speak for itself. And if not? Painted over or being reworked becomes its fate.
Haley’s figures on the other hand, exist within the context of their environment, morphing in response and resonance to it. Haley’s artistic output is the perpetual motion of life in transition. His evolution as an artist is marked by his relentless curiosity with technical exploration and a decades long, gentle drift from representation to abstraction. Haley likens his process to chaos theory, where the approximate present cannot predict the approximate future. For Haley, the organic process of art creation incorporates the paradox of chaos theory; that which arises from chaos, defies the prediction of disordered uncertainty, and resolves with elegance. The more abstracted Haley’s figures become, the more humanity they contain.
Haley desires to increase people’s appreciation and understanding of three-dimensional work. Challenges excite Haley’s curiosity, and as a result his technical expertise spans casting and carving with many materials, jewelry making, and the building and repair of both clocks and musical instruments. For Haley, the acquisition of specialized materials skills provides access to his emotional experience.
The deep respect and quiet familiarity of the artists, both with each other and their bodies of work, informs this unfolding narrative of person and place from a place of curiosity. Join them in their wonder… as they wander.
Robin Mayor completed his art education at St. Martin’s School of Art, in London, England and has done post-graduate work at the Ecole des Beaux Arts in Paris, France. A lifetime commitment to the visual arts has included art making, exhibiting, and education, as tenured professor, director and principal of numerous art institutions across North America.
Mayor was the director of the Vancouver School of Art when it became the Emily Carr College of Art and Design in 1978, and continued to lead the school through the mid-80’s. He has lectured extensively throughout his career on a broad range of subjects relating to the arts, humanities and education, and published essays and articles in art journals and magazines.
Mayor is an award-winning artist who has exhibited throughout, and alongside, his accomplished academic career, beginning with the Royal Academy (scholarship winner) in London, England. Exhibiting in Vancouver and various states in the US, he has been honoured both with a Queen’s Jubilee Medal, and by the Royal Canadian Academy.
Robin’s work can be found in corporate, public and private collections throughout North America, Europe, the West Indies and Japan.
Tim Haley is an American born, Canada based sculptor, painter and printmaker who focuses primarily on figurative works, across the mediums he uses to create. Haley trained at the Boston Museum School of Fine Arts, and over a long career has sculpted in bronze, steel, wood, concrete and stone. He owned and operated the Vancouver Island Bronze Arts Foundry, the only commercial bronze arts foundry on Vancouver Island at the time. There are many art forms that Haley has worked with over his varied career.
Haley’s interest in art started at the age of 8, under the tutelage of his Great Aunt, a watercolorist. During high school, Haley made the decision to become a professional artist, encouraged by his art teacher. His early career focused on jewellery design and manufacturing, working with silver, gold and gemstones, throughout the US and Canada. Through the 1970’s Haley developed carving skills that culminated with being commissioned to create a bishop’s crozier of ivory, gold and yew for the Los Angeles diocese.
Haley’s interest as a printmaker began with his personal collection of the work of other artists. By the 1990’s Haley was participating in invitational international sculpture exhibitions in Belgium and Holland; Haley was the only Canadian representative in these worldwide showings. He has exhibited in Canada, United States and Europe, and his work is in collections from North America, Philippines, Zimbabwe, and many European countries.
“Haley has a developed a masterly sense of the human form, so that these tiny figures often have a monumental quality.” Alex Colville