PETER DEACON - RCA
"FACING WEST -LOOKING EAST"
This title for an extended series of work has its origins in a three month period during1988 when I was working as an artist in residence at the Leighton Colony in Banff. At that time a series of collage works on paper titled "Letters From Banff" was produced. These small scale pieces contained auto biographical references as well as references to the mountain landscape surrounding Banff. They were subsequently exhibited in one-person exhibitions at The Whyte Museum of the Canadian Rockies in Banff, The Virginia Christopher Galleries in Calgary, and the Thomas Gallery in Winnipeg, as well as numerous contributory exhibitions across Canada. Individual pieces traveled as far a field as Japan.
The oriental venues seem, in retrospect, to be particularly appropriate because the motivation for much of the work was based upon levels of cultural and aesthetic interchange between western and eastern values. I came to Canada in 1975 from England to teach at the University of Calgary and, inevitably, carried with me an artistic experience steeped in a European sensibility. Some time was subsequently spent studying Chinese and Japanese painting, including free-form brush calligraphy with the late Chinese artist Chin Shek Lam.