Biography

chap-bookCelia Meade has an M.F.A. from the University of Calgary, and studied at the Royal College of Art in London. She has had solo and group shows in Canada, the U.K., The Netherlands, Chile, and Australia. Her work is included in the collections of the Alberta Foundation for the Arts, Fairmont Hotels, the University of Calgary, and was featured on the cover of Alberta Heritage Magazine. She co-founded the Calgary East-Side Studio Crawl, while on the board of the Burns Visual Arts Society. She lives on Salt Spring Island with her husband and two daughters.

I like to produce work that contains a symbol of man in a greater, natural environment. The symbols I choose are often archetypal, like houses or boats. An archetype is defined in the Oxford dictionary as a primordial mental image inherited by all. Professor of mythology Joseph Campbell explains our archetypal imagery as coming from a time long before ours, the conditions of that time responsible for the shape of our minds and bodies. With the use of archetypes, Campbell argues that society is searching not for the meaning of life, but rather the experience of being alive. Campbell argues that our society looks to art and religion, principally, to study the subconscious.

Man against nature is one of the great themes of art through the ages. Turner in his Romantic paintings of boats, tried to depict the ethereal quality of existence. Van Gogh is the most famous example of a landscape painter who was really depicting his own spiritual turmoil when he painted cornfields or sunflowers. Arthur Dove was among the great tradition of American landscape painters who abstracted their vision to reflect the vast untameable spirit of this continent. More recently in Canada Paterson Ewan and Wanda Koop brutally depict the harsh reality of the Canadian experience, using among other subjects weather patterns, and seascapes, to reflect the inner turmoil of emotional life.