The Mauro Gallery: A Year in Review

It has been a busy year for the Mauro Gallery within the Historic Water Tower on the St. Mary’s Campus. The dynamic space, made possible by a generous donation from Tom and Debra Mauro has been home to vibrant art collections, guest lectures and intimate reflection.

When the gallery opened last year St. Mary’s University President Dr. Gerry Turcotte was quoted as that the Mauro Gallery “brought together friends of conservation, of art, of heritage, or learning, [and] of faith” and that has only increased with each new art installation and event that has been housed in the amazing space.

The Mauro Gallery’s first official exhibition Aisinna’kiiks helped to transform the space into a safe space for discussion, and was an exciting new exhibit that focused on the land’s untold story prior to European contact.

“Art has a way to tell stories that can be more invitational than other methods,” explained Michelle Scott, Director of Indigenous Initiatives at St. Mary’s University. “Art is an expression of history, art is an expression of social change or social commentary and can open things up that others cannot.”

In November 2018, the Mauro Gallery also welcomed renowned illustrator Suzanne Moore into its refined space to give an illustrated lecture on the creative process of the Saint John’s Bible.
Attendees of Ms. Moore’s illustrated lecture were offered an insider’s perspective on the creative process of creating contemporary interpretive illustrations for The Saint John’s Bible, the first handwritten and illuminated Bible commissioned by a Benedictine monastery in 500 years.

The intimate space of the Mauro Gallery afforded attendees unparalleled access to some of Ms. Moore’s work while providing the perfect setting for her discussion on her work within The Saint John’s Bible.

The most recent major exhibit housed in the Mauro Gallery was a unique collaboration between students of St. Mary’s University and our neighbours at United Active Living entitled Weaving Words of Wisdom, a creative storytelling process that combined intergenerational life writing and a mixed media art display.

Striking black and white portrait images depicting participants flowed through the gallery accompanied by vibrant acrylic landscape paintings courtesy of Kyrie Bouscal and her grandfather Tim Relf.
In one year the Mauro Gallery has proved to be a space that not only brings people together, but fosters community, and conversation.