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

Lakehead University Honours Exhibition 2021

It’s a pleasure to present the work of students Erika Niva and Julia Mills at the Thunder Bay Art Gallery.

This is fantastical work for unfamiliar times. Erika’s drawings, alive with movement, are made from charcoal rubbings of tree bark. With trees as her collaborators, her large-scale drawings become layered, textured self-portraits of birches, spruce, balsams, poplars, and pine. A group of ceramic elemental creatures scurry and scuttle through what is real and what is not.

Julia asks us to reimagine an interior space. Her ceramic furniture pieces are painted flesh-tone pink and have human feet. As a life-size living room set, it’s oddly inviting. Winking at design trends and nodding with dreaminess and domesticity, these objects live in a world that is strange and familiar.

On behalf of the Thunder Bay Art Gallery, congratulations Erika and Julia and best of luck in your creative practices. I want to express extra thanks to the artists, the Fine Arts department, and especially Prof. Sam Shahsahabi for your cooperation this year.

Penelope Smart,