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Fort Gallery honours late artist Jo-Ann Sheen

Sheen, who passed away in May, was a ‘beloved member’ of the art gallery

The Fort Gallery is hosting a special show this August to honour the work of late artist Jo-Ann Sheen.

Retrospective will run Aug. 9 to 27, with an opening reception on Aug. 13 from 1 to 4 p.m.

Sheen was “a longtime and beloved member of the gallery, who passed away in May,” according to a Fort Gallery press release.

“Jo-Ann was an accomplished and prolific printmaker, a graduate of Emily Carr University and SFU, and a member of Malaspina Printmakers Society.”

Sheen’s first serious work after art school — a series of portraits layered with etchings of decom-posing leaves or other textures — reflect her interest in how peoples’ faces reveal only part of who they are. Behind every face, there are stories, and this interest evolved into works of hands and body language.

Sheen was also interested in getting people involved in art, so her drawings of hands and faces are mounted separately, and viewers are invited to mix and match them to create different expressions.

In another interactive project, Sheen hung coaster-sized rag paper stained by wet tea-bags on the gallery wall and invited visitors to elaborate on what they could see in the stains by drawing into them. The gallery will be reprising this project for Retrospective.

Sheen’s most recent art, made from garbage, reflects her ability to see beauty in everything. Begun in collaboration with Claire Moore and Diana Durrand for a project called Package Deal, Sheen made printing plates from squashed fast-food containers and printed these on rag paper.

“She was fascinated with the care, engineering and detail that goes into single-use items,” the press release states. “Her sense of humour infuses many of these prints, with little figures hanging from squashed water bottles or climbing through cogs made from pie plates, with funny or ironic titles.”

The Gallery is open Wednesday to Sunday from noon to 5 p.m. at 9048 Glover Rd.

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