While many lament the exodus of young people from rural communities, Lunenburg boasts a constant influx of young artists to its folds.
Nova Scotia College of Art and Design University (NSCAD) announced on September 24 it was continuing its artist-in-residence program with the Town of Lunenburg, with three alumni beginning their residency in September.
And a day earlier, the Lunenburg School of Arts introduced the artist in residence for its Fall 2020 session.
Recent graduates Jessie McLaughlin, Sienna Maeba and Undine Foulds are NSCAD'S latest artists-in-residence chosen for Lunenburg.
"Taking part in a residency program is a great way to launch an artistic career," Martine Durier-Copp, the dean of NSCAD, suggested in a media release.
"A residency program is an exciting option for artists who have an interest in community engagement, developing teaching skills, and sharing their work with a diverse group of art enthusiasts. Residents become active participants in their host communities, engaging town residents in the visual arts through exhibitions, receptions and guest lectures," he said.
Hailing from Bedford, McLaughlin (BFA 2020) is a textile and fashion artist who explores how materials, text, colour and the textile processes of weaving, quilting and applique create knitted and woven clothing.
From Toronto, Maeba (BFA 2020) has an interdisciplinary practice that also incorporates fashion and textiles, with a focus on colour palettes. While coming from the Pacific Northwest, Foulds (BFA 2020) is an interdisciplinary artist working in ceramics with a focus on slip casting.
"We're thrilled to welcome Jessie, Sienna and Undine to Lunenburg," Mayor Rachel Bailey said in the release. "The artist in residence program contributes greatly to the cultural vitality of this community and also to the development and creativity of local artists," she added.
NSCAD's first partnership was forged with the Town of Lunenburg in 2006. Each year, up to three NSCAD alumni share the large, light-filled studio in the triple bays of Lunenburg's former fire hall. Since its establishment, many of the NSCAD alumni who moved to Lunenburg through the program continue to live and work in the area.
In addition to Lunenburg, NSCAD also has residence programs in three more Nova Scotia locations: Dartmouth, New Glasgow, and Sydney.
Meanwhile, since 2014 and twice a year, the Lunenburg School of Arts has been inviting an emerging artist to take over its South Studio for a three-month term. Its fall term began September 8, 2020 and will run until December 15. The winter term begins February 14, 2021 and runs until May 15, 2021.
"This residency provides the artist (emerging or recent art school graduate) with time, space, and a monthly stipend to develop and enhance their practice. Exhibition, mentorship, and teaching opportunities at our School during this residency are also important for building an artist's confidence and resume/portfolio," Katie Hall, the school's operations coordinator, explained in an e-mail.
This fall's artist-in-resident at the school is Hannah Genosko. Genosko received her Bachelor of Fine Arts with a focus in printmaking in 2015, and has been participating in group and solo exhibitions since 2012.
"Hannah's project proposal for her time at our School explores the social practices of storm preparation in coastal communities. She will depict these ideas through a series of linocut prints using our School and working closely with the Mahone Bay Centre's, Mahone Bay Printmaking Studio," reported Hall.
Genosko's one-day workshop at the school in December, Hand-Printed Holiday Cards: Linoleum Block Printing, is already sold out.
Applications for the school's winter 2021 residency program closed on August 15. "We have an exciting collection of proposals to select from," reported Hall.