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Art blossoms in downtown underpass

Spring flowers are blooming on the concrete of the Rideau pedestrian underpass as the Downtown Rideau Business Improvement Area opened its second full year of outdoor art installations yesterday.

Spring flowers are blooming on the concrete of the Rideau pedestrian underpass as the Downtown Rideau Business Improvement Area opened its second full year of outdoor art installations yesterday.

Several works by painter Brenda Gale Warner from her series entitled Flowers From My Secret Garden will be on display.

“It just makes me happy to share some of my deepest personal thoughts with everybody that walks by the underpass. I understand a lot of people go through here in the course of a day,” Gale Warner said.

The works on display include Forget Me Not, which is dedicated to the memory of her father and features the bouquet of flowers with which he was buried. BIA executive director Peggy DuCharme said the painting’s story sold her on Gale Warner’s work.

“I read that and I started to cry and I said, ‘OK girls, this one’s got to go for sure for spring,’” she said.

The BIA’s plan, said DuCharme, is to present a minimum of four to five installations in the underpass each year.

At the end of the season in mid- to late-October, the BIA will auction off the works that have been displayed at the underpass, with proceeds going to continue the program and to support the Ottawa Arts Court Foundation.

Gale Warner’s garden, despite the series’ title, is not so secret. It can be found outside the contemporary art gallery she owns, Galerie 240. She will be painting there all summer and invites everyone to drop by.

 
 
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