PAPER AND WILLOW BRANCH CANOES (or CURRACHS)
These sculptures are made of Japanese and Korean paper, all lovely, and Dogwood and Water Willow branches grown by Kathleen Doody on Toronto Island, in her Sally Garden. I was helped in making these by my friends Hanah and Dani. Creating them involves drilling through the branches, tying them together with linen thread from Ireland, and then glueing on the paper.
Boating, like music making and painting, helps define us as humans. In all three pursuits we leap in, full of adventure and ambition, seeking fascinating new destinations, reaching – maybe recklessly - for unique vistas.
My paper sculptures, made of Water Willow and Dogwood, is a regression to my Lake Winnipeg childhood.
As well as learning to stand on the gunwales of a canoe and force it to plunge forward by jumping up and down, I also liked making canoes from sticks and birchbark. This was near the Brokenhead Ojibway Nation on the Brokenhead River.
Here I am again, years later and far from home, making more canoe sculptures to float my memories. One of my recollections is that – like every good Canadian young woman – I had to learn how to make love in a canoe.