Now that the Legacies exhibition is up at RMG my attention is turning back toward my own artmaking and catching the few remaining fall days with sunshine strong enough to make one or two more solar prints for my Summer 2018 exhibition Solar Prints of Doctor Kearney, Fort St. John North Peace Museum, Fort St. John, B.C. Garnet Kearney was my uncle, and a famous character in the Peace River district.I am lucky to have the photos that he sent back to Ontario to his sister Marion, and have been trading with the museum archives to produce this work. After his time in WWI he went west permanently, sending pictures and letters describing his life.
I find it interesting that it is a solar project which requires endless experimentation and tinkering, something that I think is a family trait and that he might have liked as well.
The idea of doing these prints on linens comes from another inheritance, a bag of embroidered hankies, towels, napkins etc., some of which would have come from their home in Renfrew Ontario and may have actually been used by Garnet at one time. This original cache of material has since been supplemented by the inherited linens of various friends and relatives.
I am thinking about the juxtaposition of Victorian finery and the frontier life that Garnet went on to live and wondering whether he consciously rejected small town gentility in the east in favour of the rugged and exciting world of northern B.C.