Pamela Desmet Franklin is an artist who is crazy about images: images from the past, from other cultures and from the natural and man-made worlds (as seen through her own perspective and experience).
“My work is about the blending and juxtaposition of images,” she says. “Inherent in the imagery are systems of belief, myth and mystery which cut across place and time. We have our place in history – we are living histories and as well, we live in our own mythologies as a result of our life experience and what we have come to believe.”
Pamela has always been a student of Art. Her inspiration comes from visiting museums and historical and archeological sites backpacking across Europe after high school, to traveling in the Middle East and overland to India where she lived for a year.
In university, she was chosen to take part in the World University Service tour of Sri Lanka. She has travelled to Mexico numerous times as well as in Guatemala and Belize, enthralled with Mayan ruins and the timeless beauty of other Caribbean countries such as Cuba, the Dominican Republic and Barbados. Pamela has taught English in northeast China on two separate occasions and has also visited Japan and Hong Kong. She feels that participating in different cultural situations has expanded both her sensibility and sensitivity as an artist.
“Our civilization is based on a tenuous premise: that our obsession with acquisition outweighs any moral or ethical observation; that for the more than ten thousand years of semi-recorded historical existence, mankind has been lusting after metals and minerals for tools, weaponry and adornment, and art has been complicit in this drive for domination and quest for territory and all that it contains.”
Although photography has been one of Pamela’s life passions, she has just begun showing her work. Her most recent exhibit in January, 2013, at the Cre8ery Gallery‘s “58 Inches from the Centre,” included collage as well as photography. The next exhibit of her collage will hang in the Cre8ery’s Auxiliary Gallery from February 19, 2013 to April 1, 2013, and exemplifies the idea that we are going to have to find more creative solutions for solving problems between the world’s cultures that are a little less murderous.
“In order for us to survive as a species we are going to have to learn about a new way of being, of interacting with each other and within the environment.” says Pamela.
“That way may be had from trying to understand the lessons from past cultures, or from borrowing from the great spiritual movements from the past, revisiting and reinterpreting them to help us see our path to a cautiously more optimistic future,” she adds. “Only an appeal to stir the higher consciousness that exists within us will lift humanity from the squalor of our present indignities and release us from the endless repetitions of our own very banal histories and existences.”
Collage and painting in watercolor and acrylic is a more recent passion for Pamela. She paints with intensity using colour as a vehicle for both emotion and significance. Several of her watercolors have also been exhibited at the Cre8ery Gallery’s group show,”99 Pieces of Art on the Wall” in August, 2011. Besides being a member of the Cre8ery Gallery, Pamela also belongs to the Martha Street Studio and the Sun Country Arts and Crafts group that has sales and exhibits several times during the summer on the south-east side of Lake Winnipeg.
Pamela’s unique greeting cards, currently selling through the Tapestry in Glass Studio and Savoir Faire Gift Shops on Henderson Highway in Winnipeg, serve to reveal her exquisite eye as well as making this art form both accessible and affordable. Her paintings, collage and fabric art are also available through these outlets.
“It’s great that shops such as these take such an interest in local artists and both welcome and promote the work of emerging artists,” she says. “It helps to build community and we have such a large and vibrant population of artists in Elmwood.”
“It starts with you bringing people together and bringing community together,” says Jan Shotton, owner of Tapestry in Glass, who is quite enthused about the artistic community. She suggests simple activities like walking dogs, playing street hockey and jogging is where community starts to be built. “It takes a smile and a ‘Hi’ and your time,” she says.
Jan and Pamela plan to collaborate on a joint project in the near future.