Alberta based artist, Chris Cran has been described in The New York Times as a painter who "…has built a career on tampering with people’s perceptions." Widely exhibited across Canada and internationally recognized, Cran has become known for turning nothing into something, with the slightest push. Cran’s paintings, included in numerous Canadian collections, have to do with visual tricks, images that appear one way but have been made another way. Currently the studio fellow for The Banff Centre’s Visual Arts Optic Nerve Residency, Cran has been named as the recipient of this year's Keith Evans Memorial Scholarship.
Cran’s work investigates perception and illusion, and the viewer’s role in how images are formed. From his studio at The Banff Centre, Cran admits to finding enjoyment and challenge in turning one thing into another. Cran is grateful for the scholarship, which he says “makes possible the opportunity for experimentation and play.” As studio fellow for The Banff Centre’s Visual Arts Optic Nerve Residency, Cran is thrilled to be in a position where he can guide other artists-in-residence, both sharing his thoughts on perception as well as experiencing the intriguing cross-pollination and collaboration between artists in the program.
The Keith Evans Memorial Scholarship is awarded annually to an Alberta visual artist. This scholarship was established as an endowment by Maria David-Evans, Deputy Minister, Alberta Children’s Services, in honour of her late husband. Importantly, contributions to the endowment, as with any new gifts to Banff Centre endowments, will be matched dollar for dollar by the federal government under the recently announced Endowment Incentive Program.
With the announcement of Cran as this year’s Keith Evans Memorial Scholarship recipient, Maria David-Evans offered the following comments:
On behalf of my late husband Keith Evans and our family, we are pleased to be able to provide support through the Keith Evans Memorial Scholarship Fund to multimedia artist, Chris Cran. The scholarship towards his senior artist-in-residence tenure at The Banff Centre, where he will be creating new works and especially mentoring other artists, was something Keith himself aspired to as an artist. We are proud of the excellent reputation of The Banff Centre, a Canadian jewel, for its ability to develop, nurture, and hone Alberta's and Canada's cultural and artistic talents.
Optic Nerve is a thematic residency that explores vision, seeing, perception, and optics as they relate to knowledge, consciousness, and meaning. This residency addresses and reflects the development of lens-based media from camera obscura to virtual reality.
The public are invited to view work created by artists in the Optic Nerve Residency during Open Studios on November 25, 2005. Open Studios will include an artist studio tour from 3:00 p.m. - 4:00 p.m., in Glyde Hall and the Jeanne and Peter Lougheed Building, with presentations in the Telus Studio. Studios and presentations will continue until 6:00 pm.