1080 Keewatin St,
Thunder Bay, ON, P7B 6T7

Artist: Rick Rivet
Title: Journey #15
Date: 1994
Medium: acrylic on canvas
Dimensions: 165.5 × 348 cm (65 3/16 × 137 in.)

Born in Aklavik, NT, Rick Rivet’s artistic practice draws on his experience growing up in a Métis family who trap, hunt, and fish. Rivet pursued his Bachelor of Arts at both the University of Alberta and the University of Victoria. He then completed his Masters of Fine Arts (1985) and Bachelor of Education (1986) at the University of Saskatchewan. Journey #15 is an excellent example of his characteristic style for which he has become internationally known.

Journey #15 is a large-scale, visually captivating painting that showcases Rivet’s exploration of what he refers to as “a Métis-Canadian sensibility with modernist concerns.” He explains further, stating, “My work involves combining and reinterpreting the iconography of ancient peoples in a contemporary perspective, using abstract poetic symbolism. Intuition, sensuality, emotive content and creative thought are all combined in an individualistic consideration of means and method.”

From late 1991 to early 1992, the Thunder Bay Art Gallery hosted a solo exhibition by this artist, entitled Directions: Recent Work by Rick Rivet. In 1998, it acquired Journey #15 for its permanent collection. In total, the Gallery’s holdings include six works by Rivet, including the work pictured above. The perspective of the imagery is from a bird’s-eye view, meaning that the artist has depicted two rowers travelling along an expansive field of greens, blues, and whites as a bird might see it, from an elevated perspective.


Originally published in The Walleye – MAY 2019

By Andrea Terry, Acting Curator, Thunder Bay Art Gallery