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New exhibits at Casa and SAAG explore Alberta and cosplay

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Casa has a number of new art exhibits happening this month.Darcy Logan poses with Faces and Facades. photo by Richard Amery
 Artists Ed Bader and Peter Greendale explore  Alberta in their  exhibit “Northwest/Southwest” which opened at Casa, Nov. 4.
“Both of them are established artists who earned BFAs  at the University of Lethbridge before beginning their art careers,” said Casa curator Darcy Logan.
“It is an exploration of Alberta and two different geographic areas,’” Logan continued.

“ Ed Bader uses colours and collages to describe northwestern Alberta. While Peter Greendale uses photographs to describe southwestern Alberta,” Logan said.
The second half of the main gallery features something  completely different— Ethan Roth’ s “Faces and Facades, which includes full sized paper sculptures of familiar cosplay and pop culture uniforms and armour.
“They are large folded paper sculptures which reflects his love of cosplay,” Logan observed.
“There are five large paper sculptures.”

One familiar sculptures include a Star Wars storm trooper and Iron Man. The others come from Graphic novels and video games.
“ There are also  two completed ones inspired by the virtual reality game Skyrim he has taken to conventions across the country,” Logan said. To indicate how much work goes into each costumes, there is a breakdown of a seemingly simple cube, which includes several thousand individual components.
 There are three other exhibitions  at Casa.

Len Komenac, whose comic strip/ Roy Lichtenstein/Andy Warhol  inspired work is often on display at the Owl Acoustic lounge tries something a little different for his exhibit “Small Worlds,” which is on display in the Casa entrance hall.

“He’s forced alternate perception to create miniature worlds he has photographed,” Logan said.
There are also two exhibits upstairs.

Linda Hajash’s “Not to be Toyed With” explores how toys affect genre roles in children.
“So she’s altered Barbie dolls to deal with genre roles,” Logan said.

The last exhibit is Criss Wiebe’s exhibit “ The Nature of Transition.”
“He expresses himself through acrylic on painting paintings.”

This week, Dec. 9 the Southern Alberta Art Gallery opens  two new southern Alberta tied exhibits.The new exhibits, Tyler Los-Jones’ ‘a slow light’ and Quebec artists Richard  Ibghy and Marilou Lemmens‘ ‘The Golden USB’ run Dec. 9-Feb. 4. Lor -Jones was inspired by  bands of strata in the mountains of the Crowsnest Pass  reflecting how the  landscapes are in a constant state of flux during a 2015 residency  and how the people utilized  directional at the Gushal Studio in Blairmore.


Southern Alberta Model Train club crazy for trains

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Everybody loves a train. Or is that a cane? Model trains aren’t just for kids anymore.Paige Hudson and her son Riggs looking a the Southern Alberta Model Railway Club’s N scale exhibit during their open house, Oct. 21 and 22. Photo by Richard Amery
 The Southern Alberta Model Train Club welcomes train lovers of all ages, occupations and skill sets.

 They meet every week to talk trains, play train games, build and paint scenery, lay track and install switches and lighting. The members operate the trains through radio controllers, which can not only operate the switches and send trains on another track, but work the lights and even make the train’s whistles blow.

 The club showcased their woDon Cook shows the Southern Alberta Model Train Club’s HO exhibit during their open House, Oct. 21. Photo by Richard AmeryRichard Ameryrk at the fall open house, Oct. 21 and 22 at their clubhouse by Gyro park (15 Street  and 10 Ave ‘A’ South)
“We have people of all ages to retired adults and people in Grade 12,” said club president Don Cook, watching people trickle in and out of the club’s clubhouse during their fall open house. They also have an open house in the Spring.

“We have members who are interested in a lot of different aspects. Some are interested in painting scenery, others enjoy laying track and others like installing switches. Others enjoy paining scenery and others just enjoy running the trains,” Cook said, noting the exhibit is always changing as he indicated anew seaport scene in the midst of construction.

 The club includes operational HO scale and N scale trains as well as a stand alone static G scale exhibit.

 The centre piece of the clubhouse is an HO scale set in its own room — a full mountain model, featuring a pristine mountain scene, buildings, a working round house and several intricately painted HO Scale trains designed to look like they’ve been naturally weathered. They even have a digital schedule showing when the trains run.


Local dancer to represent Canada at World Dance Championships in Germany

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Local dancer Macy Obara will join some of the best dancers in the world, representing Canada and Lethbridge, while competing in World Dance Championships in Reisa, Germany Nov. 20-25.Macy Obara does a flip in preparation for the World Dance Championships in Reisa, Germany. Photo by Richard Amery
“It’s something I have always wanted to do,” said Obara, 14, who has been flying to Langley, B.C. to practice with some of the best dancers in Canada for the competition.

She has been working with head choreographer Danielle Gardner and Charlene Hart  who is choreographing  her duo routine. She  is also part of a large group performance. She practices her solo routine at her hometown Studio Exisdance with teacher and owner Janielle Scott, one of several local instructors she works with.

 Obara is a versatile dancer who  does ballet, hip hop, jazz, modern and novelty dancing.

She has been dancing since she was four years old.Macy Obara is ready to compete in World Dance Championships in Reisa, Germany. Photo by Richard Amery
“I started at the University of Lethbridge, but that was for preschool, so I stopped for a few years and started again when I was nine or 10,” she said.
“Then she took up gymnastics and went back into dancing,” added proud dad Jeff Obara.
“She’s a very well rounded dancer,” said one of Obara’s instructors Taylor Rypien, who has been teaching Obara hip hop dancing for the past five years.

Rypien noted they informed her of the opportunity to compete in the worlds and let Obara take it from there. The International Dance Organization has over 250,000 member dancers from six continents.

The World Championship format is Olympic-style with only one Gold, Silver and Bronze medal presented on the podium while the World Champion’s National Anthem is played as the top three medalists’ flags are raised.

 The competition includes children, junior and adult categories. Obara will be competing in several events in the junior (age 12-15) category for both east and west teams.


Music and books for Word on the Street

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Word on the Street was a lot of fun on a brisk, Saturday afternoon, Sept. 23 outside the downtown Lethbridge Public Library.The Junkman’s Quire’s Megan Brown bundled up during their set at Word on The Street, Sept. 25. photo by Richard Amer

Jaron Weasel bear demonstrates  the crow hop at Word on the Street. Photo by Richard Amery
 Local Jazz/ rock/ Celtic band The Junkman’s Quire, clad in toques and jackets played their usual upbeat set of Cello tinged folk and Celtic  music.

Megan Brown  strummed guitar and sang as frontman George Fowler sat and played cello.

As expected, Word on the Street is all about books and reading.

I took in parts of several panels on Blackfoot storytelling and learned a little about the meaning behind pow wow drumming.

Other tents featured an assortment of authors reading from their works, while a panel of mystery writers answered questions  from a curious crowd about where their ideas come from.

Constance Douglas talks about Schnoogy at Word on the Street. Photo by Richard Amery— By Richard Amery, L.a. Beat Editor
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