March 11, 2016

Celebrating Resiliency & Community Connection for Women of all Abilities

Zelda J. Rempel, DAWN Canada’s board representative from Saskatchewan delivered a key note address on March 7th entitled: “We’re All in this Together: Celebrating Resiliency & Community Connection for Women of all Abilities”, in celebration of International Women’s Day in Saskatoon.

She focused her presentation on the role of art in maintaining good mental health while presenting her own work – photographs, acrylics, 3D soapstone scrulpture and white ware.

Here is an abstract of her speech:


“Today I am to show you some of my art pieces as well as some pictures of art work that I have done.

Most of the pieces were done through classes with Michael Martin, Gail Adams School of Art or USAC / community Arts division.

The pieces are varieties from Photographs, acrylics, 3D soapstone, pottery, and white ware. I have also dabbled in green ware or ceramics.

My favourite type of artwork is to work with the old fashioned real oil paintings not the water-based oil painting that is very similar to Acrylics.

Gail Adams School of Art worked and focuses on cartoons and wildlife. My focus is on landscape on the prairies. Since I grew up on a farm and saw with my own eyes the population shrink to where it was a hundred years ago or more.

I have with me one of the first paintings I have ever did. “Bridge City Sunset was to have been used as DAWN’s Logo the problem with the sunset it was to bright of a sunset to ever be a dawn in the morning. It did put me in with honorable mention at the exhibition and travel the province of Saskatchewan for a 2 year period.

The next painting I did was the Canadian thistle and the Monarch butterfly which is also in Regina at the Government house.

The next couple of pictures I did happened to be pictures near Watrous. Little Manitou Beech and Camp Easter Seal.  I also have the Peppertrees Restaurant looking off to the lake with a sunset in the background.

I am intrigued with sunsets. My house face west so I see a lot of them on the front porch. The variety of color and shapes is fascinating to me.

Terminators versus Elevators is the next best thing for me to remind myself how government has lost focus on the farming communities where curling, skating, hockey, baseball, dodge ball, soccer were once an everyday occurrence. We are reminded of this when they have have outdoor hockey night in Canada. But it really is not the same thing when neighbours and friends would come together and play, not professionals.

The same things goes for painting you don’t need to be a professional to paint It is a hobby that helps you relax and forget the activities that have gotten you down and out. It is therapy for those recovering from stroke, mental illness, abuse, because it helps you relax and take your emotional feelings into the painting rather than focusing on aggravation. You let all the aggravation into the picture releasing your emotions this helps anyone with a debilitating illness relax and focus on the positive rather than the negative.

Here are some of the pictures I have done. I also brought a sample of a few smaller pictures I photographed later on.”