Last night, the Thunder Bay Art Gallery held its opening reception for Vision Circle: The Art of Roy Thomas. The exhibition brings together works by Roy Thomas (1949-2004) from both public and private collections and includes works spanning his entire career, from his early drawings to his major public commissions. This amazing body of work is paired with excerpts from the artist’s journals—the combination is truly inspiring.

Elder and artist, Ahmoo Angeconeb, welcomed guests with song, smudging, and humourous recollections of his friendship with Roy. The guest curator for the exhibition, Dr. Elizabeth McLuhan, spoke to the significance of Roy’s contribution to the school of woodland art and to her personal connection to his work. An interesting note is that Roy’s painting “We’re all in the Same Boat” was inspired by an exhibition of First Nations artists that she curated. The mother of acclaimed author Joseph Boyden read his essay on Roy Thomas—a poignant account of his life and his reflections on his art which provided a perfect introduction to Roy’s life partner, Louise. At first overwhelmed with emotion, Louise talked about her early days with Roy and described his relationship with his art and his family. She described a confident and sensitive man with a deep appreciation for the teachings of his elders and enduring love for his wife and his children.

The exhibition runs until September 9, visit for details.

by Michelle McChristie