Sandra Woods
Art despite pain

In the news

(posted on 19 May 2024)

This past Friday evening was the opening night Vernissage of another art show, the juried annual exhibition of the Women's Art Society of Montreal (WASM). This year's edition is special, as it marks the 130th anniversary of this historic Canadian art organization.
Being presented at the lovely Viva Vida Gallery in Pointe-Claire Village, not far from my home, this show feels much more personal to me than usual; my husband and I have coffee across the street, almost once a week!
Unfortunately I got home later than expected, so missed the start of the Vernissage at 1730 - along with the awards presentations and speeches.
So it was quite a shock when I walked in, and another artist I know told me that one of my paintings had a "dot".

I should mention that each artist in this juried exhibition was allowed to display only two paintings; both of mine are watercolours, in a more contemporary an experimental style for me.
Coincidentally with the recent Northern Lights phenomenon, caused by solar flares & geomagnetic storms, one of them is entitled "Aurora borealis, the Rockies". I say coincidentally, because I submitted my watercolours to this exhibition long before I'd heard anything about this season's extraordinary Aurora borealis.
The other is a Chronic Pain awareness painting, named "One in Five Canadians Lives with Chronic Pain". It features an orange-flame background on which float/fly five bird-like creatures; the orange pain-suffering figure is being ignored by most of the four blue creatures... But one of the blue figures is leaning down to interact with the orange one.
My goal for this piece was to convey the message that anyone can be that one figure/person, showing empathy towards someone living with chronic pain (or any other chronic illness).
Living with an invisible chronic conditions often caused isolation, and that can be prevented - by simple human kindness.

Back to "the dot" - have you been wondering what that meant?
In this exhibition, a red dot beside a painting signifies that it has been sold while a blue dot indicates that it was awarded an Honourable Mention by the Jurors.
When I finally got to my Aurora borealis painting, after touring the rest of the exhibition, I was absolutely thrilled to see a blue dot beside it.
What a truly wonderful way for me to celebrate the 130th anniversary of the Women's Art Society of Montreal - Thank you so much to the Jurors!
This art show continues through May 22, 2024 at the Viva Vida Gallery in Pointe-Claire Village; at 278 Lakeshore Road in Pointe-Claire, Québec.
A portion of proceeds of this event will be donated to mental health initiatives at the McGill University Health Centre (MUHC) hospitals, here in Montréal.