I am delighted to share my art with you at The Mill Street Gallery and Café, Sydenham, Ontario. I love this area. I have paddled and hiked throughout Frontenac Park. With each passing day I realize the connection to this beautiful place. My family and relations were pioneers of Frontenac County. Great Great Great Grandpa William Redmond was married in Sydenham as was his son, John Redmond, my Great Great Grandfather. Many family members still live in the area settled by our folk over two hundred years ago. Redmond, Babcock, Barrett, Medcof, McFarlane, Donnell, Dowker, Trousdale, Perry, VanLuven, Walker and more are families well known in the area. They are my own; being either direct ancestors or family relations. Thinking of how they struggled and laboured to build this community lets me feel very happy to display my art at the Mill Street Gallery and Cafe in historic Sydenham, Ontario.
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If you would like to view my paintings check out previous blog entries and/or scroll down to Froggy at the bottom of the page. Click on Froggy and hop to my online store with links to eBay.
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By night; The Mill Street Gallery and Cafe, Sydenham, Ontario
News Flash . . .
In the April 21, 2011 edition of the Frontenac News there is published a feature article by Julie Druker about my art and solo show at the Mill Street Gallery. It is titled . . .
Colourful Art With Colourful Roots”Ottawa artist John Redmond's solo show at Sydenham's Mill Street cafe is as visually pleasing as it is historically interesting. His acrylic works, which can be classified as abstract expressionist, each contain a fluidity that demonstrate a painter who has been evolving and mastering his craft into his very own personal style……The Café & Gallery’s co-owner, Pat Dawson, is thrilled to have an artist who not only makes work of such a high calibre but who also has roots in the area.” - The Frontenac News Here is a link to the full article; Colourful Art With Colourful Rootshttp://www.frontenacnews.ca/2011/11-16_apr_21/redmond_john.html
The Frontenac News is a subscription based paper delivered to households in the region. Here is a link to the home page of the Frontenac News online edition. http://www.frontenacnews.ca/
Friend Murray Kinsley drove with me to Sydenham to help hang the show. Many thanks to Murray for his kind help.
Get out on the highway . . . looking for adventure . . .
John Redmond standing with Mill Street Gallery and Cafe owner Pat Dawson. Bare walls ready for paintings are in the background.
In a casual conversation during my visit a couple weeks after this photo was taken Pat and I realized that we had grown up in the same Montreal area suburb. Although on different streets, we lived about the distance of three houses away from each other and went to the same elementary school. Pat was one year ahead of me. There is little doubt that as children we played together. What a surprise it was when we realized this. My brother Steve wrote to me when I e-mailed the tale to him, “Your story proves that if you go far enough away from home, you will be home again…” The universe is curved.
Murray Kinsley exchanged his Gibson guitar and pick for a screwdriver and picture hanging wire that day in late March 2011. Merci encore mon ami.
“Me! Me! Choose me!” They called out as we made our creative decisions about where to hang which paintings in that wonderful Mill Street Gallery and Cafe space.
Above photo; I’m holding a photo of my great great grandparents John and Ann Redmond. Several old family photos are included in the show to highlight our connection to Sydenham and the surrounding area.
Our family roots are thick throughout the Sydenham area. Great great great Grandpa William Redmond came to Canada a widower with young children. In Sydenham in 1858 He married Nancy (nee Barrett) widow of Daniel Perry. Nancy also had three young children. Together they had three more children. Their combined family lived just north of Sydenham on the east side of Rosedale Rd, halfway between Alton Rd and Freeman Rd. William's son John Redmond, my great great grandfather married Ann Donald/Donnell in Sydenham in 1861. William and Nancy Redmond purchased 203 acres (C11 L1) in Portland Township, Frontenac County. This is indicated on the 1860 map of Portland Township. John and Ann Redmond raised a family there. While Post Master of the area in 1894 John Redmond named the area Holleford after the family’s home of Hollyfort, Co. Wexford, Ireland.
Here is a link to my Facebook album with many photos of the show as it was being set up. This link allows even al the many very merry UN-Facebook-er folk to view the photos.
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Taking a little break during the hanging of the show.
Adjusting the lighting on paintings.
Black and white paintings occupy the Southeast corner of the Mill Street Gallery and Cafe.
Honouring the ancestors; Photos that hang with the show and the notes accompanying them shed light on the history of the area and our ancestors who pioneered its settlement.
The above album contains photos of the show that were taken during my visit on April 19, 2011. I traveled to Sydenham for an interview with Julie Druker who wrote the article which appears in the Frontenac News.
Circa 1890-1895; The family of John and Ann Redmond. Their home was at Holleford, C11 L1 Portland Township. In later years John and Ann retired to Kepler (located South of Sydenham) where they appear to have lived with the family of Ann’s brother.
Mary Ellen Redmond (far left in the photo above) was the first wife of James T. Babcock, father of the late Jack Babcock, who became Canada’s last living WW1 veteran at the time of his death in 2010. A number of Holleford men served in the Canadian Forces during WW1, including Jack’s half brother Manily who was my grandfather’s cousin. Grandpa Redmond served with the 21st Battalion. Others in the extended family also served in that war. John and Ann Redmond were grandparents to Jack’s siblings.
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Meet The Artist: There will be a meet the artist closing happening on May 29, 2011, 1 to 3 p.m. When my solo show ends we will have a group show for the month of June. Artwork by the artists indicated on the poster image below will be displayed until June 25, 2011. (click on photo to enlarge)