Retelling Anne

October 9, 2008

By Mike Landry
Bonnie Lewis', "Nasty Girls (Pearl)."

Bonnie Lewis', "Nasty Girls (Pearl)."

To celebrate the 100th anniversary of Anne of Green Gables the University of Guelph’s Macdonald Stewart Arts Centre has created a contemporary response to Anne. Retelling Anne brings together the work of six female emerging artists working in a variety of media that feature Anne of Green Gables as their launching point. However, the works are a far cry from literal representations of either Anne or Lucy Maud Montgomery.

“Lucy Maud was a pioneer, not just as a writer but as a female writer,” says curator Dawn Owen. “That kind of creativity and independence she obtained 100 years ago as a published writer really paved the way for a lot of the creativity from women today. So, it was really important to cement the idea of the continuing evolution of creative practice”

Instead of literally retelling the story of Anne, the show looks at bits and pieces from the books that resonate in the artists’ contemporary work. None of the artists have ever met each other, or been exhibited together. The exhibition is meant to really challenge the work, because of the context in which it’s being shown, and create a new community of voices.

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