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Twelve + One Women in Colour

January 12, 2019 @ 08:00 - March 29, 2019 @ 17:00



This show was inspired by “The Women of Abstract Expressionism”, held at the Denver Museum of Art in 2016 and the Palm Springs Art Museum in 2017. It motivated me to assemble the work of my painting mentorship students of the past decade, all of whom happened to be women. They are passionately devoted to the art of painting, each one manifesting a unique personal voice that reflects the visceral, tactile, and colour-driven aspects of painting. All are graduates of the Ottawa School of Art Fine Arts Diploma Program.


-Lucia De Marinis


[Lucia De Marinis has been making art from a very early age. She is a graduate of the Cleveland Institute of Art in the USA, where she mentored with renowned colourist Julian Stanczak. She has been teaching art at the post-secondary level for more than thirty years.]


Carol Brodkin-Sang

Montreal-born, Carol grew up influenced by her mother and brother’s art and her father’s love of science. The two directions drove her to pursuing a B.Sc. at McGill University, Montreal, 1977 and a B.F.A. at York University, Toronto, 1983. She expresses her love of nature in her conte` drawings and watercolour and acrylic paintings. The rural quality of Ottawa with its fields, gardens and geese continues to inspire her.

She is currently working on abstractions of nature, expressing the fascination with growth, evolution and cosmology. It begins with an image; then one can take it from there. A moose can emerge from a dinosaur and a butterfly can contain a multiverse.


Kit Collins

The landscape takes me out of myself to a spiritual place where I wish to convey the experience felt. I am inspired by deep crevasses worn by rivers and winds, the earth as it heaves against itself to new heights, bottoms of great seas now exposed in rivulets of sand, and tracks of glacial ice as it surges and recedes.

I graduated from the Ottawa School of Art Fine Arts Diploma Program in 2014.


Virginia Dupuis, SCA

Virginia, a graduate of the three-year Fine Arts Diploma at the Ottawa School of Art, credits her two apprenticeships in oil painting, with a concentration in colour theory, in advancing her art practice.

“I honour domesticity and passing down of traditions, by using artefacts to personify women who nurture. Working in the traditional medium of oil, layer over layer, allows me to mimic the careful patience in the making of the original object. I want the viewer to sense the quiet generosity of caring women, feeling a connection that triggers their own memories.”


Farida El-Houseiny spent her childhood in Dubai and her high school years in Egypt before moving to Canada in 2012. Her passion for art started in her early years with the influence of her artistic family. Farida is a mixed-media artist who draws upon everyday life experience, objects, shapes, and colors in nature to create her own unique type of abstract expressionist art. Farida is a graduate of the Fine Arts Diploma Program at the Ottawa School of Art.


Assel El-Rayes is a Canadian artist of Palestinian origin from Gaza City, mainly interested in abstraction, semi-abstraction and surrealism, that allows travelling beyond the visible world.

“My paintings are pure reflections of raw emotions, driven by spirituality that influences the choice of colours, and the imagery created that has symbols of importance. Inspired by all that surrounds us and believing that making art teases the mind, widens the imagination and reveals mysteries of our souls.”


Mary Gourlay

Since moving to Canada in 1992 Mary has had ample opportunity to experience the magnificent Canadian shield, through canoeing, hiking and wilderness camping. Such journeys – and the documenting of them with sketches and plein air paintings – provide her with the point of departure for an exciting exploration of colour, shape and line. Within that exploratory process she finds freedom from the concerns of producing purely figurative work. Her expressive paintings convey a sense of immediacy and intimacy with the landscape.


Patricia Kenny

Surrealistic abstract works are inspired by transformative experiences. Resilience is expressed as something pliable withstanding forces of nature and time.  Forms dissolving and re-forming simultaneously survive as weathered translucent surfaces.

Patricia’s working method is based on spontaneity and materiality.  Dynamic energy and movement are created with various means including scratching and pouring. Physicality in her process taps into the subconscious, resulting in primordial, passionate and universal paintings. Her experience as it relates to human existence is raw material for expressing transformation and energy.


Jennifer Haney is an Ottawa-based visual artist currently exploring the challenging genre of abstract art. She works intuitively, savoring the surprise in her work – unplanned and spontaneous. Using a combination of brush, palette knife and other tools to mark her gestural strokes in acrylic paint, she experiments with various styles of abstraction, creating shape, texture and form with colour. She tries to convey her love of rich, vibrant colours through the dramatic explosions of paint across the canvas, and likes to think the vitality and energy of her palette reflect her enthusiasm for life.          


Julie Mercantini’s objective is to create a visual representation of the sensory environment. Inspired by elements of nature, her abstract oil paintings evoke a sense of mystery and familiarity. Thin layers of paint and glazes create light and transparency. Although her brushwork is softly expressive, she creates intrigue and tension through compositional elements. A Fine Arts Diploma graduate and recipient of several awards and scholarships, such as the Robert Hyndman Award for Excellence in Painting, her work has been shown in many gallery exhibitions in Ottawa and west Quebec.


Mary Ann Penashue is an Innu artist from Sheshatshiu, Labrador, where she currently resides. Her traditional indigenous culture and its practices inspires much of her work. She is a graduate of the Ottawa School of Art Fine Arts Diploma Program.


Born and raised in Korea, Seungah Ryu, is a painter and graphic designer who is interested in science, physics, color, nature, and spirituality.

Her work is symbolic and abstract.  Her paintings are based on images that she saw during her meditation.  She also paints symbolic shapes that she finds attractive in nature. Her works are organic and abstract. She likes to mix traditional and contemporary techniques and experiment with materials, color, and shapes.

Seungah Ryu has a Bachelor of Fine Arts degree and more than 15 years of teaching experience.


Debbie Sleeman is an Ottawa-based visual artist originally from Val Caron in northern Ontario but has resided in Ottawa for over forty years. She graduated from the Fine Arts Diploma Program at the Ottawa School of Art in 2017.

Debbie’s current canvases invoke elements of the Canadian landscape but emphasize texture and colour over shape and form. The paint is applied (or removed) layer over layer using brush, sponge or cloth. One constant in most canvases is the presence of a horizon, but often cheesecloth in the foreground is used to flatten the depth.













January 12, 2019 @ 08:00
March 29, 2019 @ 17:00
Event Category:


Ottawa School of Art Downtown Campus
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Preston Square
347 Preston St. tower 3, second level
ottawa, On K1S3H8 Canada
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