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Labours of Love. Barry Ace, Catherine Blackburn, Justine Woods. Curated by Rachel Deiterding. MacLaren Art Centre, Barrie, Ontario. February 16, 2024 – May 19, 2024.

Labours of Love presents a selection of work from Barry Ace (M’Chigeeng First Nation – Anishinaabe – Odawa) Catherine Blackburn (English River First Nation – Dënesųłinë́), and Justine Woods (Georgian Bay Metis Community – Aabitaawizininiwag). Their beaded garments and adornments are carefully constructed, bead by bead and stitch by stitch, each a gesture of love that contains rich histories and cultural knowledge that have been shared with the artists across generations. Each artist has developed their own unique approach to beadwork, joining the historical practices of their kin with their personal interests, relationships, and experiences to root their practice in the present, while laying a path for the future that expands the possibilities of what beadwork can communicate.

About the MacLaren Art Centre

The MacLaren Art Centre is the regional public art gallery serving the residents of Barrie, the County of Simcoe and the surrounding area. The Gallery has a permanent collection of contemporary Canadian art held in trust for the public and presents a year-round programme of world-class exhibitions, education activities and special events. As an art museum, the MacLaren is engaged with the collection, conservation, presentation, documentation, promotion and appreciation of contemporary Canadian visual art for the benefit, enrichment and enjoyment of public audiences. The Gallery has a Permanent Collection of artworks held in trust for the public and presents a year-round programme of innovative exhibitions, unique experiential art education activities and special events. Education provides the unifying link that activates their collections and exhibitions, and fosters an understanding and appreciation of the visual arts.

Image: Barry Ace. Nibi Emosaawdang Mkiznan (Water Walker Moccasins) (2023) mixed media. 22.9 x 10.2 x 74.9 cm.