Catherine Joa’s Art as an Exploration of our Relationship to Land and Nature

Artist Feature- Catherine Joa- Artwork 1
“You Should Look up Once in Awhile”

Catherine Joa is a visual artist, high school art teacher and mother. Determined to spend the better part of her life close to nature, her work is a constant exploration of our relationship to the land. She resides in Denare Beach, Saskatchewan.


Catherine has been an artist all her life. As a child in a small town in Northern Saskatchewan she would make so many drawings that her parents could not keep up with the demand for paper, pencils and other drawing supplies that Catherine needed to express herself.

Catherine left her small Northern Saskatchewan town at 19 in pursuit of a degree in  Fine Arts, and that was the turning point at which she became a professional artist with life completely centred around art.

“My art practice grounds me. It makes me feel like I am doing what I’m meant to do. I am always thinking about what I will make next. I like to spend my days outside at the lake and my connection to the land is paramount to my artistic practice.”

Catherine’s love for nature is immense, and her drive to express her connection to the land manifests itself in her art.

“I find peace when I am doing things outside and I like to represent the beauty of the land in my work. I draw strength from the natural world and I am driven to make work that highlights the importance of nature in all of our lives.”

Being a busy mother and teacher with a small house, Catherine works in her kitchen in the winter when it is cold outside. In the summer when it’s warm she moves her studio out to her screen porch where she is able to work while enjoying the fresh air. She lovingly calls this space “Screen Porch Studios”.

Catherine admits, that it has been a challenge for her to find the time for her personal art practice over the years.

“I am a high school art teacher and mother of two busy teenagers who are involved in all kinds of extra-curricular activities. I have made it my mission in the last year to carve out time for my art practice. This time is easier to find now and will only start to grow as my kids get older and leave the nest.”

Catherine has explored and worked in many different mediums over the years. When she was in art school, she majored and did her thesis in ceramics. After that, she spent a few years as a potter. Her artistic explorations have continuously evolved throughout the years, always resulting in a new and unique way of expressing her love for nature.

“I have always drawn and painted and have experimented with printmaking as well. Landscape representation has been a constant theme throughout all different media. My latest work is acrylic. I am interested in incorporating line in the work whether that be line as drawing, as edges, or as subject (power lines, road lines), and also as composition (diagonal lines). I am also interested in using my titles and artist statements to tell stories about the work, about the connections of the land to our lives.”

Artist Feature- Catherine Joa- Artwork 3
“It Should be Coming up here Pretty Quick”

Artist Feature- Catherine Joa- Artwork 2
“Let’s go Cruise the Strip but I need FiveBucks. I’m empty.”

Artist Feature- Catherine Joa- Artwork 4
“I Can’t Believe you Just Said that After all These Years”

Catherine’s Artist Career highlights:

Education Background

  • 2003 BFA Honours, University of Manitoba
  • 2009 Participant, RBC Emerging Artist Mentorship Program with Marcel Dubreil, Flin Flon, MB
  • 2010 BEd, University College of the North, The Pas MB
  • 2013 Participant, Norva Centre Artist Retreat, Denare Beach, SK
  • 2014 Participant, Norva Centre Artist Retreat, Denare Beach, SK
  • 2015 Participant, Norva Centre Artist Retreat, Denare Beach, SK
  • 2015 Participant, Mentorship Program with Artist Diana Thorneycroft, Flin Flon, MB
  • 2015 Participant, ArtsWest Artist Retreat with artist Peter Graham- Printmaking
  • 2016 Participant, ArtsWest Artist Retreat with artist Inga Torfadottir- Printmaking
  • 2017 Participant, NorVa Centre Artist Retreat, Denare Beach, SK
  • 2019 Participant, ArtsWest Artist Retreat with artist Diana Thorneycroft- Drawing

Professional Experience

  • 2010-Present Secondary Arts Ed Teacher, Creighton Community School, Creighton, SK
  • 2017 Arts Ed Reference Committee Member, SK Ministry of Education Curriculum Renewal
  • 2017 Juror, Saskatchewan Arts Board Artists in the Schools Grant Adjudication, Regina, SK
  • 2018 Juror, Northern Juried Art Exhibition, Flin Flon, MB

Grants

  • 2016 Recipient, Saskatchewan Arts Board ArtsSmarts Residency Grant, Artist in the Schools
  • 2017 Recipient, Learning Opportunities Program Grant

Group Shows

  • 2001 U of M Ceramic Annual Spring Show and Sale, UMSU University Centre, Winnipeg, MB
  • 2002 U of M Ceramic Annual Spring Show and Sale, UMSU University Centre, Winnipeg, MB
  • 2003 Antithesis, BFA Honours Thesis Show, Cre8ery Gallery, Winnipeg, MB
  • 2004 Clifton Studios Ceramic Show and Sale, Clifton Studio, Winnipeg, MB
  • 2009 RBC Emerging Artist Mentorship Group Show, Norva Centre, Flin Flon, MB
  • 2013 Avernus, curated by Katie Kozak and Lucien Durey, Baba’s House, Creighton, SK
  • 2015 First Ink, Printmaking Exhibition, Norva Centre, Flin Flon, MB
  • 2016 Second Ink, Printmaking Exhibition, Norva Centre, Flin Flon, MB
  • 2017 More Than Just Art, curated by Pauline Braun and Audrey Lute, Norva, Flin Flon, MB
  • 2019 Tempering Blue, The Northern Nine Collective, curated by Amy Karlinsky, Norva, Flin Flon, MB

Solo Shows

  • 2020 Driving Around, Painting Exhibition, Norva Centre, Flin Flon MB

Collections

  • 2020 Saskatchewan Arts Board Permanent Collection, Regina SK

Catherine accepts commissions!
Please support her by following her social media accounts and visiting her website:

—TSG

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