Cultivated Threads

Nostalgia, Displacement and the Tapestry of Memory

Nancy Cole, Collaboration with the Dead no. 17 – Sgt. Sam Hudka, archival printed canvas, cotton, copper wire

Nancy Cole, Négar Devine-Tajgarden, Jessie Fraser, and Maria Simmons: Cultivated Threads

June 1 – July 20, 2024
Opening Reception: June 1, 2024, 12 – 2 pm, Artists’ Talk 1 pm
Annapolis Royal, NS

ARTSPLACE Gallery in Annapolis Royal, NS is preparing for Cultivated Threads, a multi-gallery, immersive exhibition that examines the nature of memory through the diverse practices of Nancy Cole, Négar Devine-Tajgarden, Jessie Fraser, and Maria Simmons.

The intricate embroidery of Nancy Cole’s work evokes a sense of both displacement and nostalgia. Each piece is characterized by stitching up to 100,000 French knots, achieving an appearance reminiscent of post-impressionist pointillism.

Négar Devine-Tajgarden confronts the lasting impact of familial loss and collective trauma—resulting from the 1988 massacres in Iran—through her intensely personal woven photo tapestries.

Jessie Fraser’s material-heavy processes capture the fleeting essence of memories, revealing the delicate balance between preservation and erasure through weavings, archival documentation, and poetic text.

Memory is a dynamic process explored by Maria Simmons through fermentation and transformation. In the resultant immersive environment, we witness artefacts undergo metamorphosis.

“The jury observed a common thread in the four artists’ works. Through their chosen mediums, these artists convey uniquely personal stories and experiences. Together, they offer a compelling exploration of memory’s complexities, showcasing how different processes can illuminate the ever-shifting landscape of recollection,” said Sophie Paskins, ARTSPLACE Gallery Director.

“These artists emphasize how memory enables us to connect with past events in our lives that directly influence our understanding of the present. Memory may also give us a framework to think about the future. This show will definitely enable viewers to have a meaningful experience that is both personal and somewhat universal,” said Ted Lind, ARTSPLACE Board Member.

Join us in an exploration of these distinct artistic visions, where memory is not just a static relic of the past but a living, breathing force that shapes our present and future.

Cultivated Threads opening reception Saturday, June 1, 2024, 12:00-2:00 pm, Artists’ Talk 1:00 pm. Light refreshments served, all welcome. Cultivated Threads continues through July 20.

Négar Devine-Tajgarden, Uncle Mahmood, paper, thread

Nancy Cole trained as a journalist and photographer before switching to thread art in her search for a narrative based on faces and form. Her work has been exhibited in London, Rome, New York City, and Guimaraes, Portugal. Her thread pieces have been acquired by the Prince Edward Island Art Bank and the Confederation Centre Art Gallery.

Négar Devine-Tajgarden is a Saskatoon-based visual artist with a special interest in sculpture, installation art, and photography. Négar studied Sculpture at the University of Tehran, Iran; completed her MFA degree at the University of Saskatchewan.

Jessie Fraser is a visual artist based in Kjipuktuk/Halifax whose work has been exhibited at Collect Art Fair UK (2024), the Mary E. Black Gallery (2023), and the Illingworth Kerr Gallery (2019). They obtained an MFA from the Alberta University of the Arts in Craft Media.

Maria Simmons holds an MFA from the University of Waterloo and a BFA from McMaster University. Her multifloor solo exhibition, Anoxic Memory, at the Visual Art Centre of Clarington was a finalist for the Ontario Galleries Awards.

ARTSPLACE is a public art gallery that is operated by the Annapolis Region Community Arts Council (ARCAC). ARCAC is a registered charity, dedicated to encouraging and promoting the arts. Supported through the Province of Nova Scotia and the Canada Council for the Arts.

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396 St. George Street, Annapolis Royal, NS

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ARTSPLACE is partially accessible (main floor galleries).