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15TuesdayAugust122014BreathoftheLandfuelsneworalexhibitFortSmithartistbranchesouttoNunavutforlatestbotanicaljournalByMEAGANWOHLBERGThehardybutelegantstemsandblossomsofHighArcticplantscapturedalongthecoastofBathurstInletinNunavutarethelatesttogracethepagesofartistBrandyWilsonsbotani-caljournalaworkinprogressthatturnsreal-lifespecimensintoupcloseandpersonalplantportraits.TheFortSmith-basedartistrevealedhernewestexhibitBreathoftheLandAbotani-caljournalofBathurstInletlastFridayattheNorthernLifeMuseumandCulturalCentrewhere13strikingphotographsofcollagedoraarefeaturedforthersttimealongsidelichenlacedrocksandanimalskulls.TheportraitswereshotwhileinNunavutJuly1-82013inherportablestudiowhereinWilsonphotographsintricatecompositionsofplantsusingascannerblowsthemuptounrealsizesandthenshowsthemtotheworld.Fromabout900p.m.atnightuntilabout200inthemorningIwouldbework-inginmystudioshesaid.IwassohappyIwasbasicallyfueledbythelightofthemid-nightsun.ThenIwouldbeupagainat700a.m.IknewIhadsuchashorttimesoIhadtomakethemostofit-sleepcouldcomelater.Twoconcurrentpathssi-multaneouslydrewWilsontoBathurstInlet-aformerHud-sonsBayCo.postandthelo-caleoftheoldesteco-lodgeinCanada-forherlatestproject.HerrstintroductiontotheEasternArcticgetawayspotcamethroughrepeatedsugges-tionsbyfansofherworkthatshegetintouchwithPageBurttheinletsresidentbotanistwholiterallywrotethebookonbarrenlandplants.Laterwhiledoingmorere-searchonowersoftheHighArcticshecameacrossaphotoofArcticlupenforthersttimeandwasimmediatelytakenwiththeplant.WhenshecontactedthephotographerhesaidithadbeenshotinBathurstInlet.Itwasthenthatsheknewshehadtoarrangeatriptoseetheseplantsforherself.Thewholeworldofow-ershadopenedupbecauseIwentforArcticlupenandsawsomuchmore-allnewow-ersthatIhadneverseenbeforeanddidntknowexistedintheNorthwestTerritoriesorNuna-vutshesaid.Everydaywaslikeapresentvisually.WhilestylisticallysimilartoherpastcollectionofwildplantsinThebachaTrailsandRoadsideDitchesWilsonsnewshowischaracterizedbyadifferenceinapproachtoherformerforagingactivities.WithThebachaTrailsWil-sonwouldwaittocollectper-fectspecimensofwildowerswhiletheywereinbloom.ButinBathurstforjustoneweekshewasntaffordedthesamekindofconveniencewithre-specttotimethereshebeganpickingplantsinvariousstatesofdevelopmentintheirshortintensegrowingseasonandbranchedouttowardotheritemslikerocksandskulls.IdidntevenknowrockswouldbeonmyradarbutIgotintroducedtotheworldoflichens-rocktripemaplichenjewellichenstarburstlichen.Amazinglichensshesaid.WhenyougotoBathurstInlettheygiveyoualistofsuppliesthatyouresupposedtobring.Itoldthemyouremissingonethingonthatlistanextraboxtobringhomeallyourrocksin.EverydayWilsonandnineotherguestswouldtravelaroundtheareaonwalkingtoursandonabargeknownaf-fectionatelyastheBlueLooduetothecolourofitswash-roomfacility.Whenattheirdestinationshewouldbegincollectingherowersforthedayandbythemiddleofthenightwouldhaveanishedpiecebasedontheplaceorplantshewantedtofeature.AssistedbyBurtWilsonen-suredthatshechoseplantswithrespectleavingtherar-estintheground.SomepieceslikethegiantphotoofsilkymanicuredArc-ticcottonaresimplytoexposepeopletotheplantupclose.OtherslikeBirdIslandorAmethystPointMarsharecollectionsofplantstakenfromaparticularlocation.AnotherofMountainAvenshowstheow-ersbothinbloomandcurledup-atimelineusedtradition-allytomarkwhenmenleaveforhuntingandwhentheyre-turn.Ayuktheexhibitsfea-turepieceisadazzlinggreenandpurplefusionofsalt-fedplantssprungfromtherocksofQuadjukIsland.WilsonsaidnotadaygoesbythatshedoesntthinkofBathurstInlet.Itisareallyspecialplaceitssounique.Ineverheardavehicleforaweek.Theresinternetserviceinonecornerofonehouse.Therewerenodistractionsitwasjustyouinnatureandfreshairshesaid.Iwasjusthappytobethereeverysinglemoment.BreathoftheLandisondis-playatFortSmithsNorthernLifeMuseumuntilSept.30.PhotoMeaganWohlbergArtistBrandyWilsonopenedanewshowattheNorthernLifeMuseuminFortSmithonFri-dayfeaturingcollagedphotosofwildspecimenscollectedaroundBathurstInletNunavut.ArtsCultureVisualArts