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Shannon Hawke, Chelsea Alexander and Michael PfaffThe beaming faces are Shannon Hawke, BA, Visual Arts ’13, Chelsea Alexander, BA, Visual Arts ’13, and Michael Pfaff, BA, Visual Arts ’13.
VABErs with Dr. Veronika Mogyorody at their Master of Architecture ceremony at UDM2015 Master of Architecture Graduates
Three of our talented VABErs graduated on Saturday May 9, 2015 with their Master of Architecture degree from the University of Detroit Mercy.  The beaming faces posing after the graduation ceremony are Shannon Hawke,  BA, Visual Arts ’13, Chelsea Alexander, BA, Visual Arts ’13, and Michael Pfaff, BA, Visual Arts ’13.  Shannon and Chelsea were also honoured as recipients of the AIA Henry Adams’ Certificate of Achievement for Excellence in the Study of Architecture.  Recognition was given at the graduate awards dinner, to Shannon Hawke for stellar research related to her M.Arch. Thesis project. Congratulations are extended to all three outstanding students.
Marrow by Daniel BernykDaniel Bernyk, BFA, Visual Arts ‘09
Dan’s sculpture “Marrow” is currently on display at the OENO Gallery’s Outdoor Sculpture Exhibition 2015, May 19 – October 1, 2015. Over 80 sculptures are spread throughout the garden. The gallery is located in Bloomfield, Prince Edward County, Ontario.
title: Marrow
By SoCA techncian and graduate Daniel Bernyk
materials: solid cast and painted aluminum
dimensions: 14 x 2.75 x 62 inches
Jim Collacott and grandson Noah at his favourite day outing, a local 'zoo park.'Jim Collacott, BFA ‘71
Linda and Jim started the year with, what has become, an annual escape to the sunny and warm climes of Puerto Vallarta, Mexico. Each trip has brought new experiences and friendships.
In June, they are off to Ireland for a coach tour of the Emerald Isle followed by a cruise around the north of Scotland and finishing with a week in England visiting the relatives. Such fun.
Jim had his collector car completely refurbished when he retired. Jim is a member of the Niagara British Car Club and enjoy the runs, events, and friendship.
Jim graduated with a BFA in 1971. Earned his Diploma in Education at Althouse College in 1972 and embarked on a 30-year teaching career with the Niagara South/District School Board of Niagara, retiring in 2003.
Married with three children and two grand kids. Very much enjoying retirement.
Photo: is of Jim and grandson Noah at his favourite day outing, a local 'zoo park.'
Kim Ewin-Goebel, BFA, ‘87Kim Ewin-Goebel, BFA, ‘87
I received a Diploma in Fine Art at Fanshawe College, London, Ont, in 1985 and then my B.F.A. in Visual Arts at the University of Windsor in 1987.  I live in London, Ontario and am active in the visual arts community here, specifically at a newly formed Artist's Co-op called "Art Centre", located in the Westmount Shopping Centre.  Right now I have artwork in three group shows in town, including the Art Centre.  My blog:
We have three grown children, the oldest is in theatre school, the middle one is in a local visual arts program, the youngest in high school.
Adrian Gorea: Performing the IconAdrian Gorea, MFA, Visual Arts ‘10
I received my PhD in the Humanities Doctoral Program: Interdisciplinary Studies in Society and Culture at Concordia University, Montreal, Canada in April, 2015. My thesis combines studies in Visual Arts, Art History, and Philosophy and the Thesis Title is: A Symbolic-Realistic Guide for Image-Makers:  Performing the Contemporary Byzantine-Inspired Iconic Vision from the Spectacle. The date and time for the Spring Convocation ceremony is Wednesday, 10 June 2015, 7:30 p.m. 
Also, an upcoming invitational solo exhibition entitled, Performing the Icon is scheduled for January-February, 2016 at the Dadian Gallery, Wesley Theological Seminary, Washington, DC. Here are the details:
Adrian Gorea: Performing the Icon
January 18 – March 4, 2016
Reception & Artist’s Talk:
February 18, 2015, 4:00 - 5:00 p.m.

Rachelle Viader Knowles, MFA ‘96

Rachelle Viader Knowles, MFA ‘96
I’ve just finished my first year in a new job as Senior Lecturer and Course Director for Fine Art at Coventry University in the UK.
All Linnel and members of his ''Hand Drumming for Health' group
Al Linnel, BA, Visual Arts ‘’72, MED ‘76
I have been teaching art-music courses at Iona College for UNi—Com, special 
learning ses
sions for retirees for the last five years. One very popular course has been ''Hand 
Drumming for Health'.” The last eager group of participants wanted to form a non-profit performance group and we did. Now called Uni-Com Drum Ensemble. We received a $500 grant from our local chapter of retired teachers RTO/ERO for percussive materials. The nine of us rehearse 2 hours a week at Iona College on campus. Our first gig was at a Uni-Com lunc
heon at the Windsor Airport Hanger  on May 20th at the Canadian Historical Aircraft Museum for the Uni-Com Retirement Learning Centre Luncheon Speaker Series. This High profiled learning centre has been in operation for the University for the last 27 years and is coordinated by former Director of Education Bill McCrae. It’s president is George Plantus.
We are having a blast rehearsing and performing!! We will be available for public performance after this first exciting occasion.
Photo: BACK ROW (Left to right): Bill Wilkinson, Nino Palazzolo, Al Linnell (leader) and Bert Mayerhofer.  FRONT ROW (left to right): Dennis Niedbala, Fran Wilkinson, Joy Mayerhofer, Tammy Oosterbaan and Ruth Ann Wilhelm. N.B.: Seven are U.of W. alumni!!    
Elizabeth Gaye MacDonald, BFA ‘01Elizabeth Gaye MacDonald, BFA ‘01
I’ve had a wonderful 2014, and 2015 looks to be a great year as well.  I am an extreme plein air painter, currently working in oil.  Extreme, in that I paint in all weather, even sub zero temperatures.  There are no bad weather days, only bad clothing choices.  I make sure I dress for the weather.  I rather paint in cold weather than in extreme heat.  You can always dress warm.  My dream is to paint in remote areas.  However, getting to these areas is a challenge, due mainly to the cost of an expedition of this sort.  The biggest cost is camping gear, canoe/kayak, and 4 wheel drive transportation.  The other challenge is convincing my loved ones that this type of extreme expedition is safe.  There are many dangers in the wild.  I grew up extreme camping with my family.  I don’t live in fear of the wild.  I embrace it. 
What is Plein Air Painting?
It never surprises me when people ask me what I mean by Painting en Plein Air.  En Plein air is a French expression which means “in the open air”, and is particularly used to describe the act of painting outdoors. I often think that many know to whom I’m referring when I mention Canada’s plein air “Group of Seven.” The reality is that many haven’t any idea what or whom I’m talking about. Happily, Plein Air Painting is currently celebrating a revival around the globe.  Just do a Google search on Plein Air Painting and you will get over 3 million hits, and the Windsor & Essex County Plein Air Artists won’t be very far down the first page.
Plein air painting is not easy, but it is extremely rewarding. First off, being outdoors, in itself, is the best reward.  When painting outdoors, you learn to work quickly.  Light and shadow are constantly changing. You can’t chase the light, you must make a decision on when to capture that one moment in time.  The artist must always be aware of where the sun will be at any point during the day.  How will the sun affect the scene?  Then again, you might be painting at night or on a cloud covered day where shadows are scarce. That’s when Plein air gets really interesting.  What effect does the available light have on the scene?  Can you recreate the mood? Cloudy days are difficult, night time is near impossible.  How do you even see your canvas at night? I have a head mounted LED light that helps me to see the canvas. 
You maybe a studio painter and think that Plein Air painting is not for you.  However, the act of painting from life outdoors will improve your studio work. I must warn you that painting outdoors from life may just spoil you from ever painting from a photograph again. The experience becomes a memory not soon forgotten. Ask anyone in our group and they will tell you that there is no greater joy for us, then when we are able to paint outdoors.  But, introducing others to painting en Plein Air is a joy in itself.
Kenneth Cadwallade, current President of Oil Painters of America with Elizabeth2014 - 2015
2014 gave me the opportunity to paint in some great locations.  In August, I painted at the Paint Dexter Plein Air Festival.  This is one of many week-long painting competitions available throughout the U.S.  There are a few in Canada, but nowhere near as many as in the states.  There were two categories judged during the Dexter event.  The judge for the Dexter Plein Air Festival was internationally acclaimed artist Kenneth Cadwallade, current President of Oil Painters of America.  The first category was for work completed on location during the week, the second category was a quick paint.   The artists had 3 hours to paint, frame and submit their work for judging.  The quick paint is nerve wracking, but I thrive under pressure.  It forces me to transcribe what I see as quickly as I can.  Painting quickly tends to loosen my touch, and I record only what is necessary.  Because I paint outdoors regularly, I feel I have an advantage others less practiced artists.  To my joy, I placed 2nd in this category.  I also sold all 5 paintings that I produced during this event.  I am looking forward to participating at the event again in August of 2015. 
In addition to the Dexter event, I spent the month of September painting in Seattle, Washington.  I had the opportunity to paint with many different Washington based artists.  There is camaraderie amongst Plein Air Painters.  The common bond of painting outdoors joins us across miles, generations and social stature.  Another significant event in 2014, is that my work was featured on the cover of the publication Important World Artists vol 1  In 2015, I was accepted as an associate member of the Oil Painters of America.
Windsor & Essex County Plein Air SocietyWindsor & Essex County Plein Air Artists
In 2009 I co-founded, and run the Windsor & Essex County Plein Air Society.  We’ve recently changed our name to the Windsor & Essex County Plein Air Artists.   We have missed only a couple of weeks in the last year, due to rain.  I’ve even managed to paint in the rain under the shelter of a plein air umbrella.  Please feel free to visit the group website:  Here you will find a blog post for every outing we’ve done since September 2011.  The full list of outings dating back to 2009 can be found on our Facebook group here: 
About the group
Our group, The Windsor & Essex County Plein Air Society, was established in 2009, and is devoted to educating and promoting plein air painting. The core members of the group have painted together since the mid 1990’s. We meet weekly on location, usually on Mondays, at various locations throughout Windsor, and Essex County. The group is open to anyone, and is free to join.  For more information email: 
Twitter:  @PaintPleinAir
Adam Matak, BFA ‘02Adam Matak, BFA ‘02
Adam Matak has just completed his Master of Fine Arts degree from the School of the Museum of Fine Arts and Tufts University in Boston, MA. His work was included in numerous exhibitions while studying in Boston, including an exhibit at the Museum of Fine Arts and at Emerson University. Matak was named one of six Boston Grad students to watch:
Matak is bringing his studio back to Canada this summer, and will be teaching Studio Art part time at McMaster University.
Adam Matak has just completed his Master of Fine Arts degree from the School of the Museum of Fine Arts and Tufts University in Boston, MA