Ring in­jects per­sonal mes­sage into KYLA pieces

Artist hopes to help oth­ers through work deal­ing with men­tal ill­ness

Prince Albert Daily Herald - - ARTS & ENTERTAINMENT - PETER LOZIN­SKI

For some of the mem­bers of Prince Al­bert’s KYLA art group, Sun­day’s show was a chance to ex­plore a bit of a de­par­ture from their usual style.

The 15-mem­ber col­lec­tive and five guest artists dis­played se­lec­tions from their past year of work at the E.A. Rawl­in­son Cen­tre and Mann Art Gallery.

For Cheryl Ring, it was an op­por­tu­nity to show off a larger piece she’s put sig­nif­i­cant amount of time into. It fea­tured dozens of sculpted hearts of dif­fer­ent shapes, sizes and tex­tures.

Whereas work at the KYLA show is usu­ally in­te­grated with other artists’ Ring’s hearts took up the en­tire foyer wall of the Mann Art Gallery.

“I asked per­mis­sion from the group to be able to present in this way, as we typ­i­cally mix work in to­gether,” she said.

“I had a vi­sion of mak­ing this body of work, but be­ing that it’s an evolv­ing idea, an evolv­ing body of work, I wasn’t ready to put it out there to show at a gallery. This is al­most a test run of sorts.”

The test run taught Ring a lot about her work, in­clud­ing some of the finer points about hang­ing and dis­play­ing such an am­bi­tious pro­ject.

“I re­ally learned a lot. This is a great hon­our for me to be able to have this space and ex­hibit, and I’m grate­ful for the Kyla group for al­low­ing it.”

Ring said the series of hearts, in a way, il­lus­trate the way she tries to live her life.

“I just want peo­ple to be kind to each other. It doesn’t hurt to be nice,” she said.

“That’s my motto, if I can help some­body, if I can make some­body a lit­tle hap­pier by do­ing some­thing that doesn’t cost me any­thing, I’m happy to do it. It’s about the recog­ni­tion of the heart shape and what a main­stream icon it is.”

Ring also sub­mit­ted other show­stop­pers, in­clud­ing a plas­ter cast of a hu­man body with text wo­ven into it, which was dis­played on the back of a model. Sev­eral of her pieces, like the series of hearts, con­tained mes­sages. Some where overt, in­cor­po­rated di­rectly into the piece. While some were more sub­tle. They all speak to em­pow­er­ment and tack­ling men­tal health is­sues, top­ics im­por­tant to Ring.

“I’ve al­ways wanted to share, and I’ve al­ways wanted to help peo­ple be­cause I’ve coped with men­tal ill­ness my en­tire life. I know what it feels like to be sad, to feel alone,” she said.

“Those things can be sub­tle or overt, but I’m send­ing a mes­sage. I’m hop­ing some of the pieces bring joy, bring laugh­ter or com­fort. I want to, if I can, make some­body feel bet­ter. I would feel great about that.”

PETER LOZIN­SKI/DAILY HER­ALD

Cheryl Ring filled one wall of the Mann Gallery with a col­lec­tion of hearts Sun­day

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