Island Water is a multidisciplinary project by three artists: visual artists Tessa May and Charlotte Jones, and writer Pamela Gill. The artists have been working together to explore the theme of water around the island of Newfoundland. The exhibition highlights the social, cultural and emotional aspects of inland and coastal Newfoundland and Labrador. The exhibition includes paintings and mixed media work by Tessa May; traditional Japanese woodblocks, artist books, watercolour/wood carvings by Charlotte Jones; and poetry by Pamela Gill. May’s work is interested in the skies and the effects of light and weather on the clouds, the sunrises and sunsets, and the shifting colours of the ocean that she was seeing from her windows in Woody Point. In her current body of work, Jones looks at the patterns and colours of bodies of water on Newfoundland’s west coast. The work, using both representation and abstraction, is an emotional, physical and intuitive response to these waters. Swimming, is a series of four small woodblock prints which explore the aesthetic experience of swimming outdoors. Gill’s writings respond to the world of island and water around her and tell real stories. Her responses are reflective of life experiences and emotions. Water does not play the lead role in every poem; however, it is always present in its various forms.
Pamela Gill is the communications manager at Grenfell Campus, Memorial University of Newfoundland, where she has worked in the field of university advancement for 19 years. She has also worked in communications in the areas of health and entertainment. A former journalist, Pamela was a reporter at the Daily News in Halifax and the Telegram in St. John's before moving to Corner Brook to take up a position at the Western Star. She holds a Bachelor of Journalism from the University of King's College as well as a Bachelor of Arts (English/French) and a Master of Education (post-secondary studies) from Memorial University.
Charlotte Jones has exhibited her work in group and solo exhibitions in Great Britain, Ireland, France, Japan, the United States, India and Canada since 1986. Her work may be found in such public collections as the Arts Council of Northern Ireland; Tom Thomson Memorial Art Gallery, Ontario; The Rooms Provincial Art Gallery, Newfoundland and Labrador; Newfoundland Studies, Memorial University of Newfoundland; Occidental College, Los Angeles; the University of New Brunswick Arts Centre, Gros Morne National Park, and in private collections across Canada, Europe and the United States. She is the recipient of several awards from ArtsNL and the Canada Council. The artist studied the traditional Japanese technique of woodblock printmaking with Toshi Yoshida in Japan in 1980. Born in Winnipeg, Manitoba, the artist currently resides in Corner Brook, Newfoundland and Labrador.
Originally from Aberdeen, Scotland, Tessa May immigrated to Canada in 1984, and has been living on Newfoundland's west coast since 1988. She received her BFA in Visual Arts from Grenfell Campus/Memorial University of Newfoundland in Corner Brook and has been working as a professional artist since graduating in 1998 with the University medal for academic excellence in Visual Arts. Tessa's artwork can be found in private collections in North America, The United Kingdom, continental Europe, Asia and Australia, as well as the Government of Newfoundland and Labrador and the Canada Council Art Bank. In 2010, the artist was the recipient of an ArtsNL grant which made the Helicopter Series of etchings possible.