Inspiration through time & space

Queen’s BFA student Sarah Ammons prepares to show her artwork at national event in Toronto

Sarah Ammons works in her studio in Ontario Hall. Most of the work she’s presenting at this weekend’s Artist Project was done in her final year at Queen’s.
Sarah Ammons works in her studio in Ontario Hall. Most of the work she’s presenting at this weekend’s Artist Project was done in her final year at Queen’s.
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Queen’s BFA student Sarah Ammons has been chosen to be one of the best up-and-coming artists to showcase their artwork at the Artist Project in Toronto.

Ammons artwork will be displayed alongside 200 other independent contemporary artists in 14 categories.

Ammons was selected to be in the Untapped Emerging Artists category with 15 others from across the world.

Now in its fifth year, the Artist Project is an art fair aiming to support new talent.

With over 12,000 visitors expected to visit the show this year, Ammons hopes to use the experience as an opportunity to gain exposure.

“I really want to get my website out there and get people knowing me and liking my stuff,” she said. “Sales would be good but … I’m not going to expect that everyone’s going to dig my stuff.” Although Ammons has showcased her artwork before in downtown Kingston and at Union Gallery, she has never been involved in a large-scale show.

Ammons described her art as being philosophical, adding that she creates a lot of work involving dual imagery and self-portraits.

“My parents are both psychologists so I self-analyze a lot,” she said. “I kind of started with the idea of … how people see themselves in relation to their reality and their environment.” Ammons doesn’t have to leave her Ontario Hall studio to find inspiration.

“Everyone [in my program] has such a unique perspective and a completely different bend on how they create stuff.”

Ammons is currently enrolled in one class and spends the rest of her time in her studio. She said the freedom of the BFA program helps her creativity.

“One of the things that’s so great about Queen’s program is how we have the time and the space that is concentrated on a body of work,” she said. “It allows you such freedom to do your own thing.”

Ammons said she thinks the current one-year suspension of the BFA program is due to differing ideas on what the program should be.

”I’m not saying that change is bad,” she said. “They should keep with what’s good for this program, what’s unique about it, why people actually want to come here and that’s the module system.”

Although she originally considered attending the Nova Scotia College of Art & Design, Ammons ended up choosing Queen’s because of her interest in philosophy.

“I was going to do a medial degree but in the end I just got into painting,” she said. “I always knew that I wanted to be in fine art and that I wanted to do my BFA.” Since starting her undergraduate degree Ammons has begun taking more risks with her art.

“At the beginning of my undergraduate I was stuck in a certain rigid aesthetic,” she said. “This year I felt like I had gotten over a mental block and I think that had to do with the freedom of the program.”

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