Friday, March 19, 2010

Podunk Below the Masthead (Thursday, March 18, 2010)

A local artist makes her debut, a controversial study on First Nation post secondary funding and an advance poll in the Nisga'a Presidential election, some of the items of note for the Thursday news cycle.

Daily News, front page, headline story
LOCAL ARTIST MAKES HER DEBUT - EXPLORES TEXTURE, NATURE AND HEALING -- Thursday,s paper features a biography piece on a relative newcomer to Prince Rupert, featuring some background on the exhibits of Diane Freethy, the who uses the natural environment of the region for much of her artwork creations.

A new report into post secondary funding for First Nations students could prove to make for some controversial reading. Calvin Helin of Port Simpson is the author of Dances with Dependency and has come out strongly to criticize the funding process currently in place for First Nations students. Outlining his concerns over the Band Council system and the way that they allocate funding to post secondary students. He and co-author  Dave Snow have issued a report, called Free to Learn, that outlines what they see as the numerous problems within the way that Band Councils fund education at the post secondary level. The outline of the report and those concerns on education were recently posted to the Globe and Mail website (read it here). The complete study was released by the McDonald-Laurier Institute and can be accessed from their website (read it here)

The quest to stop the Northern Gateway energy project has expanded beyond the North coast, as environmental groups take their concerns to Greater Vancouver and target key Federal ridings in the Lower Mainland. They are seeking to inform and make active the residents of those ridings to help impress on federal politicians their desire
to see a permanent tanker ban on the North Coast, which would help stop the construction of the Northern Gateway project in Kitimat. The Daily News sought out the opinion of NWCC political science instructor Hondo Arendt (who ran for the Green party in the federal election campaign here in the riding, which while not mentioned in the article, perhaps should have been identified as such just for background) for his thoughts on the approach of Northern Gateway opponents and whether he believes their message resonates with local residents.

The Sports section featured a review of the recent 2010 BC Winter Games in Terrace from March 4-7, outlining the  success of Prince Rupert residents in that weekend of action. A review of the troubles of the Skeena Valley squad  in the minor hockey provincials and a Coy Cup update also rounded out the Thursday sports coverage.

(Archive for Daily News articles for March 18, 2010)

Local artist makes her debut - explores texture, nature and healing 
Local Tsimshian report on education funding
Environmental groups lobby down south

The Northern View
Advance voting polls open for Nisga'a election -- An update on the advance poll that took place on Thursday in the Nisga'a Presidential election, the regular voting day is next Thursday, March 25th from 8am to 8 pm, locally voting takes place at the Nisga'a Hall on Third Avenue West. (see article here)

The Northern View
Rescue mission accomplished-- Details of a rescue mission near Hattie Island, north of Kincolith, the Nisga'a Fisheries vessel Sgagim Lisims responded to a mayday call late afternoon on Sunday, March 14th, 2010. (see article here)

CFTK TV 7 News
Olympic Gold Medalist Thankful to Terrace Artist -- A local connection to John Montgomery's Gold Medal success at the 2010 Vancouver Olympics (see article here)

CBC News British Columbia, Daybreak North
They are only updating selected stories now on their website, none were posted from Thursday.

The most recently posted items archive for Daybreak North can be found here 

The Daily News, headline, front page story 
Local artist makes here debut -  explores texture, nature and healing 
By Monica Lamb-Yorski 
The Daily News
Thursday, March 18, 2010

It has been less than a year since she began creating acrylic paintings and sun catchers.

 Diana Freethy moved to Prince Rupert to work for the Department of Fisheries and Oceans three years ago - and on March 6, an exhibit of her works opened at 
Rainforest Books.

 “I embarked on art as a healing journey last May to explore art through the flow of the universe and to use articles I find in nature. I found that I can incorporate mixed media and patterns in a non-structured way,” Freethy said. 

She’s taken ferns from her backyard to create a dark green piece, called Pteridium Aquilinum, the scientific name for the western bracken fern.

 “I pressed them and dried them,” Freethy explained.

 “There is a medium on there that I let partially set and pressed and imprinted the ferns and then I used paint to bring out the outlines of the ferns.”

 A tiny painting called Yelloweye contains the ear bone of a Yelloweye rockfish that a friend gave her once. “A friend of mine from Port Hardy cut that out of a fish while I was with him on a dock. He since passed away so the piece is a tribute to him,” Freethy added thoughtfully.

 A smaller painting, titled ‘Currents’, has blues and reds flowing around and away from the electrical lock washer from a baseboard heater she replaced in her house.

 “I did all my own renovations and that one’s called Currents,” Freethy said chuckling.

 “I love taking found items. They don’t all necessarily come from nature, but they have that element in them. That meaning. Things that have interesting shapes, textures, depth, anything that creates something for you to go visually into the painting and see where it goes for you. What you need to explore personally.”

 Freethy admits she loves hearing what other people see in her work.

“Very often it’s very different than what I see.”

 Each piece is accompanied by prose, jam-packed with a variety of words.

For the artwork ‘Round 2 is Foray’ – a combination of three separate paintings – Freethy’s accompanying prose states: “Just as the Earth and the Universe are constantly seeking to balance elements and energies I seek to explore balance and reflection in this series. Flowing movement, momentum builds, morphs and expands like dawn’s transformation each morning.”

 “I love big words,” Freethy said. “I use them in my vocabulary. It’s almost like a game.”

When asked about the healing aspects of her art, she paused and added, “It’s about physical, emotional and mental healing. It’s a process.”

Freethy was born and raised on Vancouver Island and has always enjoyed the outdoors.

She described herself as a self-taught, intuitive artist. Her artwork is hanging alongside that of others created by local artists Coral Cargill and Sarah Chi Brown, at Rainforest Books.

The store’s owner, Gord Blumhagen, said he enjoys adding artwork to the store. “All of these artists are incredible and what I really like is the way they all fit together. They have three different views of the West Coast.”

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