Spring Brings Showers, Flowers & Art Shows to Muskoka!
ALL THINGS MAPLE
This year Muskoka Arts & Crafts joins the Muskoka Maple Trail.
Enjoy ALL THINGS MAPLE, art inspired by Maple Trees and Maple Syrup. at the Chapel Gallery 15 King Street, Bracebridge.
Join us for the show opening event
March 17: 4-7 pm with Maple Inspired Snacks
and Bar by donation.
Show Opens: March 17: 4-7 pm.
Show runs until April 1, 2023
Gallery Hours: Tuesday – Saturday, 11 am – 4 pm
THE SAP IS RUNNING, Acrylic on Canvas, 12 x 12 inches, Framed. Copyright Wendie Donabie.
The Muskoka Maple Trail is a truly Canadian adventure that is all things maple syrup. From maple drizzled waffles to smokey-maple ribs, discover the incredible depth of Canada’s most beloved natural product.
Brown Baggers Artists of Muskoka
SPRING SHOW & SALE
Hosted by Muskoka Place Gallery, the Brown Baggers open a spring show and sale on Saturday, March 25, running until April 29
Muskoka Place Gallery,
1182 Foreman Road, Port Carling, ON
Monday 10 a.m.–5 p.m.
Tuesday 10 a.m.–5 p.m.
Wednesday 10 a.m.–5 p.m.
Thursday 10 a.m.–5 p.m.
Friday 10 a.m. – 5:00 p.m.
Saturday 10 a.m.–5 p.m.
Acrylic on canvas panel, 18 x 14 inches, Framed.
Copyright Wendie Donabie
Huntsville Art Society
COLOURS OF OUR SOUL
The Huntsville Art Society Spring Members Show opens at the Canada Summit Centre on April 4 and runs to July 4.
Location: Canada Summit Centre, 20 Park Dr, Huntsville, ON
Hours: Daily 6:30 a.m. – 11:30 p.m.
Acrylic Skins & Raffia on Canvas, 20 x 16 inches, Framed.
Copyright Wendie Donabie
Acrylic Skins on Canvas, 16 x 20 inches, Framed.
Copyright Wendie Donabie
Muskoka Arts & Crafts
SPRING MEMBERS SHOW
The Spring Members Show showcases the creativity and wealth of talent found within the membership of Muskoka Arts & Crafts.
Location: Chapel Gallery, 15 King Street, Bracebridge
Exhibition Dates: April 7-22, 2023
Gallery Hours: Tuesday – Saturday, 11 am – 4pm
THERE’S LIFE IN THE OLD GIRL YET
Acrylic on Canvas, 18 x 22 inches, Framed. Copyright Wendie Donabie
26th International Women’s Show
Orillia Museum of Art & History
30 Peter Street South, Orillia
Show runs: April 29-July 22,2023
Tuesday, Wednesday, Saturday, Sunday 11 am – 4 pm
Thursday, 11 am – 7 pm
ALONG SPRUCE BOG TRAIL, (Algonquin Park) Acrylic on Canvas, 18 x 24 inches, unframed. Copyright Wendie Donabie
If you’re in Muskoka this spring, I hope you’ll drop by to enjoy these upcoming shows!
As a young child, I recall
receiving an Atlantic Whelk Shell.
“Put it up to your ear,” I was told.
And I heard the roar of the sea.
My eyes lit up with excitement
and my love of the ocean began
or perhaps it was rekindled.
Who’s to know?
* * * * * * * * * * * * * * **
Today, I mudlark on seashores
building a treasure trove of magical, mollusk shells,
the ocean’s generous gifts
found strewn on the sand when tides recede.
Waves wash over the powdery beach,
I’m lulled by the ocean’s heartbeat.
I inhale its fishy scent,
taste saltiness on my tongue
Screeches and squawks of sea birds grow,
perhaps warning me away,
as they come to dine
on a fresh feast of mussels, whelks, cockles and more.
Gulls, terns, oystercatchers,
sanderlings and their kin,
race for those delectable delicacies
delivered by the briny deep.
They skitter along the beach
taking flight if I draw too near.
My focus is not on them,
but on what they leave behind.
from Conchs to Clams and Coquinas
each a vacant, discarded home,
distinct in size and shape.
Like hand-crafted sculptures
their fine detailed swirls and ridges,
spirals and open cups of iridescence,
all formed by departed occupants
still seem to pulse with life.
Individual marks and shading,
colours covering the spectrum –
from foam white to squid ink black,
ultramarine to pearlescent pink.
What is their allure –
drawing me to dig my toes into the warm sand,
scanning the beach for my next prize?
Is it simply the ebb and flow
within me –
a biological response
to the moon and the tides?
Am I reconnecting with my life in the womb
where I began my human journey,
free floating my first nine months
in a tiny fetal sea?
Could it be my reptilian brain,
driving this keepsake obsession,
recalling our primordial origins,
our primeval departure from the sea?
I buy bijouterie
created from shells,
wear them as totems
to the ocean, our distant past.
Like a loved one’s ashes
I save them as ancestral relics,
the scent of the sea lingering
in shell-filled jars and bowls.
At home amid my treasures
I hear surf breaking on the shore
gulls calling overhead –
the sea in me restored.
© Wendie Donabie 2022
Sharing Poetry Inspired by Paintings
A year ago, I began building a collection of poetry mostly inspired by my paintings and shared a number of them on this blog. As the treasury of written works grows, I’ll continue posting selections and invite your comments.
Painting: The Sap is Running, Acrylic on Canvas, 12 x 12 inches, Copyright Wendie Donabie
The Sap is Running
Mother Earth spins
welcoming spring in the north
where the sun warms slumbering maples
drawing their golden sap up, and down.
A childhood memory stirs –
Sunday drives along country roads,
lined with maple trees,
pierced with stiles, adorned with silver pails.
And so, the ritual of spring begins again.
I wonder, if they feel pain
when the drill spins into their trunks
breaking through their gnarled bark.
I hope rather, they feel relief
from the pressure built up
before the sap begins to flow
draining into the awaiting buckets.
I believe it’s their gift to us,
sharing their sweet nectar
some for more than two hundred years
forgiving us for the wounds we inflict for our pleasure.
© Wendie Donabie 2023
How I Became an Art Gallery Owner
For the past couple of years, I’ve been writing art-related articles for an online summer-focused magazine. Here’s a link to the latest issue to introduce you to MuskokaStyle, a magazine bringing the best of life and leisure in one of Ontario’s premier vacation areas – Muskoka! You can read my essay on how I started out simply wanting to paint and write, and ended up running a small art gallery in my home. Hope you enjoy this issue. Simply click on the HOME button below to visit the website for the magazine.
You can subscribe to receive the magazine delivered directly to your INBOX.
NaPoWriMo 2022 Day #10
A place as seen by a woman in love
Fluid as mercury, yet hard as steel
Powerful as the birth of a new star deep in the heavens
Thunderous as a herd of stampeding horses.
Dazzling as it played dodge ball with rays of sun.
Mesmerizing, drawing her into its welcoming embrace.
Pure as liquid crystal, and cool as a mountain spring.
With each breath she leaned closer, wishing to fall into its wonder.
What had changed for her in the place so often visited?
Was this not simply a waterfall?
No, not this day.
For love had invaded her being – heart, mind and soul.
No longer could she view the world in concrete terms.
Life now reeled with poetry.
Metaphor flung itself over the precipice and dove into the gorge below.
Simile cascaded over the rocks and dripped from foliage along the water’s path.
Today’s challenge: write a poem that reproduces a phrase with the first words of each line. Perhaps you could write a poem in which the first words of each line, read together, reproduce a treasured line of poetry? You could even try using a newspaper headline or something from a magazine article.
I chose, Once upon a midnight dreary, while I pondered weak and weary – Edgar Allan Poe, The Raven
Once a raven, black as coal
upon a moonlit eve,
a minute before
midnight came to my window ledge.
Dreary, listless days he’d passed
while mourning his lost mate.
I watched him grieve in solitude,
pondered his woeful state.
Weak, his will to live now spent
and naught that I could do, he closed his
weary eyes and whispered, never more, never more.
Wendie Donabie 2022
Photo credit: Tom Mossholder
NaPoWriMo 2022 Day #9
Today’s challenge was to write a Nonet. A nonet is a nine-line poem. In the nonet form, each line contains specific, descending syllable counts. The first line contains nine syllables, the second line contains eight, the third line contains seven, and so on.
Day #9 Nonet
Sleep-filled eyes gaze at the blazing sun
flashing hot hues ‘tween earth and sky.
Brilliant colours transform,
to a muted rainbow,
as the golden orb
Wendie Donabie 2022
Photo credit: Nicole Avagliano
NaPoWrMo 2022 – Day #4
Today we were challenged to write a poem . . . in the form of a poetry prompt. If that sounds silly, well, maybe it is! But it’s not without precedent. The poet Mathias Svalina has been writing surrealist prompt-poems for quite a while, posting them to Instagram.
- Two hikers seek shelter from a storm
- Find a deserted house in the desert
- Inside there is only an out-of-place Chinese Cabinet with a key in the lock
- Curiosity drives them to open it
- A strangely clad man exits the cabinet
- He speaks in a language they don’t understand
- The storm rages outside
- Now write a poem by choosing 10 words from these lines, adding your favourite colour, lucky number, the names of your father and mother, an exotic cocktail, and a random item from today’s news.
NaPoWrMo 2022 – Day #3
A Glosa to Robert Frost’s STOPPING BY WOODS ON A SNOWY EVENING
A Glosa or Glose is literally a poem that glosses, or explains, or in some way responds to another poem. The idea is to take a quatrain from a poem that you like, and then write a four-stanza poem that explains or responds to each line of the quatrain, with each of the quatrain’s four lines in turn forming the last line of each stanza.
From the first stanza of Frost’s poem, here is
Homage to Frost: A Snowy Evening
I’m headed out into the snow
A moonless night, as home I go.
Firs and pines all laden white;
whose woods these are, I think I know.
I muse this land belongs to Joe –
a man I’ve never cared to know.
He’s never seen from year to year.
His house is in the village though.
Alone at night, I have no fear
that he might suddenly appear.
He’ll be abed in his home now
He will not see me stopping here.
I’ll linger midst what trees here grow,
as feathery flakes blow to and fro.
He’ll never know I paused tonight
to watch his woods fill up with snow.
NaPoWrMo 2022 – Day #2
In Pursuit of Weird Words
I spent far too long
searching for words,
ones weird or slightly off.
Wabbit I was
by the end of it all
I’d even developed a cough
The words acted as
my sneezes heard near and far.
I cannot go on
This must come to an end
This exercise, so bizarre.
This silly verse was written in response to today’s prompt from NaPoWrMo 2022.
Wabbit – Scottish for exhausted or slightly unwell
Stenutator – something that causes sneezing
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