Thursday, 16 July 2015

VISUAL ART

new exhibit  @ GAS
The Clown Show, July 15 -August 2, 2015
please join us for the reception Saturday July 18, 4 -6pm.

featuring works by: Max MacDonald, Ethel Shoul, Janine Parkinson, Joanne Filletti, Elizabeth Forrest, Dana Green, Jyne Greenley and Patricia Singer.














                                  



A Brief History of Clowns

A comedic character exists in almost every culture and tradition.  So many variations of the archetype exist, the Fool, the Trickster, the prankster, the hobo, the Coyote, the Romantic mime, the buffoon, Krusty…!

Earliest recorded history starts with an Egyptian hieroglyphic of  a clown.  In the theatres of the Ancient Greeks, the Dorian Mimes were the first professional comedy acts. Originally, mimes were not silent, the name came from their ability to mimic.  Female Mimes were played by women.  In the theatres of the Greece and Rome, a comic relief character was included in the dramas, these characters would make fun of the villain, and break up the tension with physical humour as well.  These  early clowns were very talented, full of wit, and joviality, as well as being accomplished dancers, musicians and acrobats.  
 
Medieval England had Glee - Men and Glee-Maidens in their plays,  they also were musically gifted.
In the middle ages the court Jesters appeared and each King and Queen would have their own collection of both male and female clowns.  The role of the Jester was not only to make their master laugh but also acted as the voice of conscience, able to question authority and mock the sacred, the Jester played an important role in  bringing about awareness to social issues.  
The colourful costumes were introduced at this time with bold pattern and colour combinations.

When Puritan rule took over England, Clowns went back to performing in the streets, on make shift stages, and outside of carnivals.

Comedia d’el Art was popular in Italy during the 1500-1700‘s, an improvisational street theatre, there was a set of characters that were in every play and the acts were set around a few main themes, either a plot by the two old men to block the young lovers from getting married or a scene involving the loss of money or property and of course, ridiculous antics ensue.  Some of the characters still exist today, including Harlequin and Pierot/ Pieroette, and Zanni which is the character most resembling a circus clown.
 
Shakespeare employed the Clown or the Fool character for comedic relief purposes, and the actors status at that time in England was elevated as clowning was accepted as an art of the theatre. 

In England in 1768, the  first Circus clown is said to have been born from an act called Billy Buttons, a character in oversized clothing trying to ride a horse and doing everything wrong, and the audiences loved the act so much it became a traditional act at the Circus.

Dana Green

References:

www.shrine clowns.com
 HYPERLINK "http://www.charliethejugglingclown.com/"www.charliethejugglingclown.com
www.famousclowns.org

Sunday, 28 June 2015


Michelle Ward: The Ghost Of You
June 24- July 12, 2015
reception Saturday June 27, 2 - 5pm.





























An Evening of Poetry @ GAS
                                                                                                                                                      
Thursday June 11, 2015
featuring:

Maureen Hynes
Patria Rivera
Ruth Roach Pierson
Norma Rowen

Maureen Hynes is a past winner of the League of Canadian Poets’ Gerald Lampert Prize for her first book of poetryHer fourth poetry book is forthcoming from Pedlar Books in September. 

Patria Rivera's first collection, Puti/White, was shortlisted for the Trillium Book Award for poetry in 2006. She's also won the Filipino Global Literary Award for Poetry.

Ruth Roach Pierson’s second book was nominated for a Governor General’s award for poetry. She has just launched her fourth book of poetry, published by Palimpsest Press. 

Norma Rowen is a former academic and broadcaster who has been writing poetry since her retirement.                                

Joanne Filletti ( GAS), Maureen Hynes, Norma Rowen, Ruth Roach Pierson, Patria Rivera and friend.