MELANIE MINTY: ‘Written Connections’: Don’t ignore art of a handwritten letter

Also: Mark Donnelly sings at Crescent Beach Bistro on June 9

Image from poster for Nina Mudry's 'Written Connections' exhibit in South Surrey.

SURREY — Artist Nina Mudry celebrates the art of the written word in an exhibition for Semiahmoo Arts entitled “Written Connections.” Writing is an art. The rhythm and flow of pushing pen or pencil across paper to create a visual art form with words is aesthetically pleasing – or it can be. The way the letters are formed, the style, the substance. Oh yes, that is art. At one time in the not too distant past, cursive handwriting was practiced diligently. Now, I have heard, cursive writing is being dropped from school curricula. Yikes.

“Written Connections” has an opening reception at White Rock Community Centre (15154 Russell Ave.) on June 16 from 7 to 9 p.m. You can view it until July 16, so there is lots of time to get reconnected to the art of the written word. Mudry’s exhibit aims to show us what we lose in communication by ignoring the art of the handwritten letter.

Alas, the longstanding art of letter writing is dying. Technology rules. Abbreviations, emoticons and ready-made online cards have become so easy to use, we rarely use the time to make a personal handwritten note for thanks, birthday greetings or any other type of contact. I admit, it is fast, easy, and there is spell check.

But what connections are we missing by signing onto our computer or phone and tweeting a broad message about our day in 144 characters or less? “Written Connections” tells the tale of the story behind handwritten letters, through the use of collage, paint, pen and ink, photography and electronics.

Mudry has always had a passion for science and art. She started her post-secondary schooling at TRU studying for a Bachelor’s of Science with a double major in Computer Programming and Math. In her second year, she took a design class as an elective and realized that art was her first love. She has participated in the past with the Western Front’s Sonic Playground and a variation of her grad piece “Chromatic Environment” was displayed at the Arnica Artist Run Center in her home town of Kamloops. Over the past five years, Mudry has worked at a local art studio as an instructor of kids and adult programs and has submitted annually to The Sketchbook Project, at Brooklyn Art Library in New York.

• This is short notice, but some people just do not write things down or communicate in a timely fashion about events. But hey, Mark Donnelly, I just love you and your art form: making music. Donnelly is a fascinating person, and has discovered that his mission and purpose in life is to write music – epic music, saga type. His epic piece “The Highwayman” will be the centerpiece an evening of music from the Donnelly clan, Thursday, June 9 at Crescent Beach Bistro, featuring fine food, English madrigals, favourites from the Gilbert & Sullivan repertoire, lots of Donnelleys, plus Eldon McBride at the piano. Dinner and show is $60 plus tax and tip; call Linda at 604-531-1882 to reserve a table. There will be a surprise guest performer. Hmm, intriguing. Must be all true – I got it in writing.

Long live the written word. And keep learning how to use pen and paper to write things down. You never know when there might be a power failure.


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