Marie Lannoo – Blue Sky
Blue Sky is an online-only exhibition curated by Marie Lannoo.
The Blue Sky project is an addition to an ongoing series of work that focusses on my interest as a painter in the colour blue. A few years ago, I was introduced to the cyanometer invented by Swiss physicist and geologist Horace de Saussure. It was a tool he used to measure the blueness of the sky. Since the sky figures so prominently on the prairies, I set about to adapt Saussure’s idea to the blue sky over Saskatoon. After observing and taking cell phone shots of the sky behind my studio and my house, I analyzed the pigment mixtures needed to create the gradations in blue from light to dark. I began painting two series of blue skies documenting the changes to blue from 7am to 10pm over the course of a day in each of three seasons – summer, fall and winter.
Once completed, I decided to extend my idea beyond my geographic place. I invited 31 artists from around the world to take a cell phone shot of the blue sky where they live and send it to me with the time of day and place. Point. Shoot. Send. Each day over the course of a month, a new image of a blue sky will be posted to an online platform at the MacKenzie Art Gallery. A link to this platform will be available at www.330g.ca, my project space website in Saskatoon. Single images featured each day will grow into a grid of blue sky images so at month’s end, all contributing artists will be connected around the world via the colour blue. After all, the sky is free and accessible no matter where you live.
Contributing artists in Canada come from Nunavut to Newfoundland. Some Canadian artists were in other countries and contributed from there. For example, the blue sky over Monet’s garden in Giverny was taken by Canadian artist Dianne Bos. How fantastic that Dianne happened to be there when the request was made.
Photos were taken at various times so there are examples of day and night skies. Artists were free to contribute a blue sky from whatever time of day they chose. Some skies are clear blue, others have clouds, some storm clouds, some traces of pollution. In many places in the world, a clear blue sky is rare.
Huge thanks to all of the participating artists who so enthusiastically contributed to this project. It has been a pleasure to know/meet you on and/or offline and to see your blue sky. Finally, a huge thank you to the MacKenzie Art Gallery whose team led by Executive Director and CEO Anthony Kiendl, so enthusiastically embraced this project to help me extend my idea out into the blue.