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Oxygen Adult Education Launches Spring Intensives: Clowning, Memoir, Collage and Painting

Oxygen is excited to announce a further series of educational offerings after Spring Break. Our Oxygen instructors design their own workshops and content, which is part of what makes the Oxygen education experience so special. The programming is as unique as the instructors themselves, and Oxygen has great instructors!

Staring on March 30 Marya Folinsbee will be offering a one-day workshop An Introduction to Clown Play and Theatre which will provide a taste of how to explore the clown realm. Marya’s first performance began behind her dad's easy chair after Sunday dinners with her grandparents as an improvisational ballet recital to Pachelbel's Cannon. Those early leaps and twirls became the first steps to a life-long love for theatre and performing arts. Since then Marya has studied, facilitated and performed in traditional Western & contemporary drama, clown and physical theatre so don’t miss this opportunity to be inspired and step into your inner clown. Marya’s philosophy:

 “I believe in play as a powerful, transformative healing gift both to adults and children. It is in play that we learn how to be, and who we might want to be. Play is where we can imagine a different world, and rehearse it into being.”

April 1-3 brings Writing Memoir 2: Piecing Together the Puzzle with Rayya Liebich this three-day course is designed for students that took Memoir 1 or who have a collection of memoir pieces to work with. Rayya believes that today more than ever, people are wanting to read the real stories of others, that there is a curiosity with reading and writing the truth, which is why memoir has become so popular. Rayya explains:  

“the writerly life is intentionally lonely, it takes courage to write memoir and this is where the support of a group setting can really help writers to write the stories they have always wanted to write. By investigating universal themes and the human condition you can create a gift of a true story that readers can relate to their own life.”

We find that Oxygen instructors often teach what they are most passionate about and engaged with, and this is true of Rayya as she is currently working on her own series of short memoirs.

Natasha Smith will be offering a four-day Collage Painting intensive where she will share her knowledge of all the different acrylic mediums and how to build interesting, collaged surfaces. Natasha’s painting technique was born from her love of creating collagraph printmaking plates. She developed her own way of applying acrylic paint to her collage paintings that relates to the way one might ink and wipe a printmaking plate.

“the additive and subtractive process of collaging is quite liberating as it is less direct than purely painting on canvas with a paint brush. You can easily change and build surfaces, which offers new possibilities and literally another dimension to painting.”

Many will be familiar with Deb Thompson’s paintings but drawing has always been a crucial part of the whole creative process for Deb.

“I keep an area in my studio in which I can draw at any time, along-side my painting or sculpture practice. In this sense it is a way I generate ideas and deepen my relationship and understanding of an image. The structure of my paintings over the past many years has largely come from the understanding of a form through drawing.”

In a five-day intensive Creating a Series: Drawing and Painting Workshop Deb will share her drawing and painting process including demonstrations on how to approach creating a series. Students will explore content and materials with playful exercises in the morning and there will be self-directed time in the afternoons for students to investigate ideas and approaches they are curious about.

“Sometimes it’s about working out what you don’t want to do and creating limitations re: giving yourself a colour scheme or working with specific materials on a chosen support” says Deb.