Assiniboia Gallery - Sheila Kernan - The Secret to her Success

June 3, 2011
Sheila Kernan - The Secret to her Success

I'm often asked what it's like to work with my husband. The truth is, it's great. The division of labour has come about naturally over the years. This allows us each to focus on the things we are good at and enjoy doing. That is the secret to our success. Oh, and also the fact that things neither of us enjoy doing I make Jeremy do...ha ha. Jeremy really enjoys surfing the internet and looking at art, thus he's often tasked with finding new talent. He's always showing me interesting artist and gallery websites. A couple of years ago, he talked to me about this very young, very talented artist originally from Saskatoon - Sheila Kernan. I was also intrigued and thus began the process of learning more about this exciting new talent.

Sheila Kernan
Sheila was born in Saskatoon in 1982 (this makes her 28!) She grew up in a big family - four brothers and 1 sister. Sheila attended Marion M. Graham Collegiate. Sheila's favourite high school art teacher, Mr. Sikorsky, was very supportive of her artistic talent. Mr. Sikorsky made sure that Sheila enrolled in every art class offered during her four years of high school. Sheila credits this early push to her success as an artist. Without the encouragement of a caring teacher, she may not be where she is today. After graduating from high school, Sheila headed to Banff to work for a couple of years. Opting not to work the ski hill, Sheila got a job at Canada House - a very established and successful commercial art gallery in downtown Banff. I find it very interesting that as an artist, Sheila has had the experience of working in a commercial gallery. In fact, selling the work of many of her favourite fellow painters. Most notably, Robert Genn.
"October Pattern" 11 x 14" acrylic/canvas by Robert Genn
Robert Genn is arguably one of Canada's most successful artists living and working today. Robert paints and actively shows in galleries across the world. He also writes a twice weekly on-line letter that is read by hundreds of thousands of readers each week. (Check it out at Robert provides excellent advice in his weekly letters. I often advise artists that if they are looking to emulate anyone he's the man. We've worked with Robert for years (and his daughter, Sara Genn) and he just gets it. Any artist that follows in his footsteps is on the right track to a rewarding professional career. Sheila realized during her time working in a commercial gallery that she aspired to be a professional artist. Sheila moved to Calgary and began studies at the Alberta College of Art and Design where she obtained a Bachelor of Fine Art degree. Fast forward to 2009. After a series of phone calls and emails with Sheila and another gallery that represents her work, Sheila sent us some paintings to try in the fall of 2009. The work was a hit from the beginning. Sheila was one of our top ten artists in 2010. An incredible achievement considering we'd only been working together for just over a year.
"How Thoughtful" 16 x 16" mixed media/canvas by Sheila Kernan
Sheila's work is intriguing on many levels. The subject matter - busy downtown city scenes and serene prairie landscapes - executed in a contemporary, colourful way. The materials - Sheila uses mixed media. A combination of acrylic and oil paint along with watercolour, sparkles and pigment to get the textural effect found in each one of her paintings.
"Dream Sequence" 48 x 60" mixed media/canvas by Sheila Kernan
Sheila's creativity, determination, professionalism and uniqueness is the secret to her success! We are very excited to celebrate the opening of Sheila's first solo show at the Assiniboia Gallery on Thursday, June 9th, 2011. Sheila will be in attendance at the opening reception from 5:00 to 8:00 p.m. We hope you'll join us.
"What May Come" new work by Sheila Kernan runs June 3 - 24, 2011.
"What May Come" 36 x 48" mixed media/canvas by Sheila Kernan

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