Artist to Appreciate: Miyoshi Kondo

M. Kondo, Take Off 2011

Miyoshi Kondo, Take Off (2011)

Many of Miyoshi Kondo’s brightly colored gouache paintings may appear at first to convey images of pure whimsy, but looking deeper there is very thoughtful and wry commentary at work in her art.   Among the themes that Kondo explores in her recent art are concepts of home and place, our relationship to the environment, and how technology influences us in ways both positive and less than desirable.  Overall, I discern a strong sense of optimism that comes through in her art, which I think is reflective of this highly personable artist herself.

Originally from Toronto and a graduate of the Nova Scotia College of Art and Design, Kondo’s distinctive style is a wonderful example of the vibrant arts scene in and around the charming town of Wolfville, Nova Scotia, where she resides, and the province generally.  She is also among the many fine artists represented by the very progressive Argyle Fine Arts in Halifax.

More of Kondo’s terrific work can be seen at her official artist site here and at Argyle’s site here.

M. Kondo, Take Me Home 2016

Miyoshi Kondo, Take Me Home (2016)

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Miyoshi Kondo, Life is A Highway (2017)

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Miyoshi Kondo, Seaside (2013)

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Miyoshi Kondo, Flight (2017)

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Miyoshi Kondo, Excess Baggage Messenger (2017)

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Miyoshi Kondo, Holdout (2015)

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Miyoshi Kondo, Hung to Dry (2013)

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Miyoshi Kondo, Over the Edge (2010)

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Miyoshi Kondo, Red Rooves (2010)

(Image Credits: Miyoshi Kondo)

Artist to Appreciate: Mary Garoutte

Mary Garoutte, “Sundown, Lincoln Street” (2015)

What strikes me most about Mary Garoutte’s urban landscape paintings is the way she highlights the play of light at the beginning and the end of days.  These quiet periods that brim with potential, while also evoking a mixed sense of meditative loneliness and reflection, seem to be as much the subject matter of her work as are the historic houses and store fronts of Halifax, where she is based.  Garoutte cites the Group of Seven artists and Wayne Thiebaud as among key influences on her art, which are evident in her choice of colors and the strong textural brush strokes on her canvases.  Her wonderful art also brings to mind for me the feelings of solitude conveyed by Edward Hopper in his own paintings of dwelling places during the quiet hours.

More of Garoutte’s work can be seen on her artist website here and is also available through Argyle Fine Art.

Mary Garoutte, “Yellow Door (Falkland Street)” (2013) 

Mary Garoutte, “100 Montague Street” (2015)

  

Mary Garoutte, “Dwellings (Light in the Window)” (2015)

Mary Garoutte, “Glass House” (2016)

Mary Garoutte, “Single Dweller” (2016)

Mary Garoutte, “Late Night Visit” (2016)

Mary Garoutte, “Red Bicycle, Young Street” (2014)

Mary Garoutte, “Sunset on Agricola Street” (2013) 

Similar posts on O’Canada:

—  Artist to Appreciate: Katharine Burns

—  Stewart Jones’s Vivid Cityscapes

—  Artist to Appreciate: Christopher Pratt

Green With Envy

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Headstones, Old Burying Ground, Halifax

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Given its immense size, Canada is blessed with vast forests, sprawling farms and sweeping fields all of green.  Adding to previous posts featuring red- and blue-themed photo galleries, this collection showcases many shades of green that I’ve encountered through my photos from coast to coast across Canada.

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