Once Imagined – An Artist’s Journey Through Abandoned Places
Book signing and exhibition opening September 23rd, 1-4 at the Auburn Gallery in Gravenhurst. Sign up to the Newsletter for updates.
Have you ever wondered about that old empty house or abandoned ruin? Who lived there and why did they leave? If the walls could talk, what would they say?
If only you could look inside…
Michelle Hendry takes you inside some fascinating houses, hotels and ruins from around the Muskoka region, many off limits to most of the world – private locations such as Sparrow Beach Lodge and Cooper’s Falls General Store. Gravenhurst is best known for it’s steamships, but in the late 1800’s it was the flashpoint for a very brief gold rush and the man who discovered the first nugget built a beautiful house that he would never live in.
Historical research and interviews with owners and past residents, many in their 80’s and 90’s, inspired the series of paintings accompanying this narrative tour through the history of each building.
The last several years have seen an explosion of urban and rural exploration. Michelle Hendry invites the reader on a unique journey with words and art, offering a glimpse into these forgotten places.
A vanishing rainstorm left a brisk, penetrating breeze in its wake. The brick house sat blind with its windows shattered or entirely absent, allowing the wind to wander through its rooms unrestrained. A gust moved a loose door, tapping and knocking on its broken jamb. The walls whispered and wailed as the air pushed through the lathe left exposed like an untended wound. The sharp roughness of peeling paint broke off in my hands and when the wind subsided, the house breathed its musty breath over me.
~excerpt from Once Imagined