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Marion Wagschal lecture

Montreal painter Marion Wagschal titled her talk Seeing the Unspeakable which for her describes painting’s capacity to convey complicated, and sometimes contradictory, ideas without words. It is a silent language, and her dense, figurative paintings certainly have much to say. Throughout her thirty year career she has circled around issues relating to women — family, masquerade, rituals of beauty, the body as metaphor for experience. Her talk was richly illustrated with many slides of her paintings, including numerous portraits, and she privileged us with a glimpse into the working process surrounding these paintings.


Postscript: Marion has learned that a book exists titled Seeing the Unspeakable – the Art of Kara Walker (by Gwendolyn Dubois Shaw, Duke University Press,2004). Using the same title was an oversight.
Marion Wagschal preparing her talk
President Leslie Cohen and attending members

Slide preparations

Marion Wagschal with Annette Wolfstein-Joseph
who organized the lecture

Louise de Tonnancour and Shirley Cohen

Leslie Cohen with Marion Wagschal

Marion Wagschal’s portrait study of her father

The painting of her father and family

Wagschal’s painting entitled Beauty


Wagschal’s sculpture

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James Turner: The Persian Carpet

You know you are in for a treat when the lecture begins with the speaker quoting the Rubaiyat of Omar Khayyam:

Awake! for Morning in the Bowl of Night
Has flung the Stone that puts the Stars to Flight:
And Lo! the Hunter of the East has caught
The Sultan’s Turret in a Noose of Light.

James Turner gave a fascinating talk on The Persian Carpet, touching on the main themes of his recently published book of the same title.
For Mr. Turner there is the obvious beauty of these carpets, the aesthetic thrill, but there is as well an inner meaning to be discovered. Many wonderful ideas woven into the talk….the persian mind which bends toward the metaphysical, Y.B. Yeats’ vision of a whole world, and (I particularly loved this image) the dervish belief that they can polish the human heart like a mirror…to reflect the divine reality.

Here are some photos from our first lecture of the season which was very well attended.

Louise de Tonnancour speaks with James Turner before the lecture


President Leslie Cohen opening the 2009 season

Carol Donoghue and Leslie Cohen at the reception table

James Turner after the lecture

Louise de Tonnancour signing up people for this fall’s cultural outings
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Welcome to the WASM blog. With any luck (in finding the time) I will be able to keep you up to date on the Women’s Art Society, posting photos of lectures and outings, as well as of things of interest in and around the city.

As usual, our first cultural outing of the season, which took place Thursday Sept. 24th, was to the Klinkhoff Gallery on Sherbrooke Street where we were graciously received by Eric Klinkhoff. He spoke to us about Montreal artist Paul Vanier Beaulieu (1910-1996), a talk rich in detail—both of Beaulieu’s life and artistic trajectory and the Montreal art scene of his era. An afternoon thoroughly enjoyed by all.

Here are some photos from our visit.


Louise de Tonnancour introducing Eric Klinkhoff


Erick Klinkhoff giving his talk
Annette Wolfstein-Joseph

Mary Jane Telfer and Shirley Cohen

Here are two of P.V. Beaulieu’s stunning lithographs.


One of Beaulieu’s many still lifes on display.
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