New Brunswick

New art exhibition examines people's relationship to Odell Park

A new art exhibition at the Beaverbrook Art Gallery will examine people's relationship to Odell Park in Fredericton.

Depository Park art exhibition opens Monday and runs until mid-December at Beaverbrook Art Gallery

A new art exhibition at the Beaverbrook Art Gallery will examine people's relationship to Fredericton's Odell Park. (Philip Drost/CBC)

A new art exhibition at the Beaverbrook Art Gallery will examine people's relationship to Fredericton's Odell Park.

The exhibit, called Depository Park, will feature works of nine artists and their different views of the park. 

The exhibition starts on Monday and runs until mid-December.

Artist KC Wilcox, originally from Fredericton and now living in Saint John, remembers going for walks through the park as a child.

"There's so many different people using it for different reasons. It's a nature preserve. It's a space people might go for recreation," said Wilcox. 

"All this different human activity happening in the space is really interesting."

I hope people have greater dialogue about the park and about nature preservation.- KC Wilcox

Her piece is a panorama she took of a decaying tree that caught her eye. Her display has the picture constantly being printed off. She took the picture covering 13 metres of a vertical portion of the tree. 

"I knew this tree wouldn't be here for very much longer even though it spent so much time in the forest," said Wilcox.

"I wanted to in someway preserve that in the same way you might preserve information."

Depository Park

KC Wilcox printed off a panorama of a decaying tree in Odell Park for her piece. (Philip Drost/CBC)

The idea came from a workshop in February put on by Newfoundland artist D'Arcy Wilcox at the Connexion Artist-Run Centre in Fredericton. From there, the group decided it would take on the project of telling the story of Odell Park. 

Wilcox and the eight other artists spent a day in Odell Park as they prepared for the project. 

"We used our eyes and our ears and our senses to take in the space and what does it mean to have a large section of land in an urban space that has trees that have lived there for over 400 years," Wilcox said. 

From there, the group went to the provincial archives to looks at some of the files on Odell Park. Some of the other pieces included an embroidery of a lady fern, a collection of natural specimens found in the park and a clay sculpture of mossy lungs. 

Originally they were just going to put on the exhibit at their own small space at Charlotte Street Arts Centre, but ended up partnering with the Beaverbrook Art Gallery. 

"For residents of Fredericton and residents of New Brunswick it's a really great way to rethink a natural landmark and look at it through a new lense," said Wilcox. 

"I think a lot of people could relate to it and I hope people have greater dialogue about the park and about nature preservation."

About the Author

Philip Drost is a reporter with CBC New Brunswick.