Meet the artist at “Field of Mice” open house picnic

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On August 18th, the public was invited to attend an Open House and picnic at the Field of Mice to celebrate the arrival of the gourd-mice and to meet artist and sculptor, Mary Catherine Newcomb who has been tending the Wilsonville-based exhibition since early June. Walking the paths and exploring the delicate gourd plants in development were highlights of the open house.. The reception was hosted by project partner, Norfolk Arts Centre at Wilsonville Organics.

Field of Mice was touted as a living art exhibition on an acre of land at Wilsonville Organics by Kitchener artist, Mary Catherine Newcomb. Newcomb was using hand-raised long-handled dipper gourds and grew them into mice-shaped molds; to draw attention to the artist’s imaginative use of sculpture as a living art-form, a grass maze also allowed visitors to discover the “nests” as they wandered.

[ Following interview from 2011 highlights more “Garden of Eden” ingredients in Mary Catherine’s current work.CP ]

“While nurturing the (gourd) plants, I cannot help but think that there is an element of performance to the piece. It is conducted privately…it is lot of work for small things – a romantic gesture? …becoming aware of the place and the landscape, contemplating our history with it, wondering about how this informs ideas about deep beauty.” states Mary Catherine Newcomb.

“Pear Tree” sculpture by Mary-Catherine glitters in the late day Sun. Commissioned by the Region of Waterloo image courtesy of the artist

The project, as part of the greater Product of Eden series, located the artistic product of molded gourds into a natural environment that provided a counterpoint to the understanding and expectations of contemporary art exhibitions. Without walls or artificial lights, yet exposed to the cycle of nature, the artistic product and process were integrated with natural events akin to the living cycles of the neighbouring farms. In keeping with this them, the NAC seeks to broaden an awareness and interest in the environment, wildlife, and agriculture through its programming.

Mary Catherine Newcomb 2011. “Survive..resist!”

Field of Mice public events in September include a star gazing evening set to music and Tuesday night Tai Chi classes at the project location. Mary Catherine Newcomb will be tending the living exhibition as the project progresses. Visitors and school groups can access the project site Thursday through Monday until the end of September. Title of exhibition: Field of Mice (resist) by Mary Catherine Newcomb Dates of Reception etc were: Saturday, August 18, 2012, 2:00 pm Visiting Hours: Thursday through Monday or by appointment Location: Wilsonville Organics, 1991 Old Hwy 24 (Pleasant Ridge Rd.), Wilsonville, ON

Telephone: (519) 428-0540 (Norfolk Arts Centre) or the Field of Mice blog: for regular updates about the project. All are welcome.

About Mary Catherine Newcomb:
Mary Catherine Newcomb works and lives in Kitchener. Born in Montreal, she received her art education at the University of Waterloo and York University. She has exhibited her work extensively, with recent exhibitions in VOGELFREI’ 07 (Darmstadt,
Germany), the Canadian Clay & Glass Gallery (Waterloo), Rodman Hall Art Centre (St. Catharines), the Loop Gallery (Toronto) and CAFKA (Kitchener-Waterloo). In February 2010 the Region of Waterloo unveiled “Pear Tree”, a new sculpture commissioned for
the Region’s Public Health and Social Services building.  She is the recipient of several awards including the Ontario Arts Council’s K.M. Hunter Artists Awards. For more information about Mary Catherine Newcomb, please go to:

The Norfolk Arts Centre acknowledges the generous support of the Ontario Arts Council and the Young Canada Work program of Department of Canadian Heritage in the presentation of this project.


For more information contact: Deirdre Chisholm, Director Norfolk Arts Centre

21 Lynnwood Ave. Simcoe ON  N3Y 2V7 (519) 428-0540

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