ELIZA HEMINGWAY (HAWKINS)
Literary works by Eliza Hemingway
Other connected facts:
Victoria City Hall; Victoria's Macpherson Theatre; Oak Bay Municipal Hall; Madrona Art Centre, Nanaimo; Gavin House Gallery; Belle Vue Art Museum. Washington DC, USA
Eliza's work has also been displayed and sold through: Yonge at Art, Toronto; Virginia Brier Gallery, San Francisco, USA: Perceptions Gallery, Boston, Mass, USA; Vancouver Art Gallery: Penticton Art Auction, BC; Art Gallery of Greater Victoria; The Port Hardy Museum and Burnaby Art Gallery, BC. Eliza's paintings have also been displayed in Beijing, China and The People's Hall, Russia.
Arts related activities:
Eliza's art is in the following known collections :
Eliza has given several writing presentations at conferences and book shows
She has read stories on CBC Radio, acted in films and in live theatre and designed stage sets and costumes
She has mounted several very large public events for artists and writers
Eliza also worked with Henry Moore for a short time through a British Government sponsored program
She also interviewed Pablo Picasso, and George Bernard Shaw
I achieved my staunch ability to work hard and my unyielding application to purpose through a girl's private school in Yorkshire, England. The school's unwritten motto was if a girl can survive a private school she can survive anything the world throws at her. I have proven this to be true; I survived the school. I am in the process of surviving the world.
I worked with artists, writers and debaters in London and Paris because painting to me is a philosophy. During this time, these two cities were home to many creators who were ready to show a whole array of new ways to paint and write.
Painting should move past the safe realism most people are familiar with. I want people to see beyond their own already adopted and settled concepts that a painted tree should look like a real tree. My paintings are not wall decorations. I am not of the twigs and flowers school of art. The work is not 'realistic' paint by number copying from photographs. You have to ask the question how did the painter manage to have the tiger stand still long enough to paint its image. I never reproduce my work as poster prints. If a person wants to own one of my paintings I want that painting to be an original.
My art has my brush strokes, my colours, my spirit and is from the heart. Each one is worked with truth. Each one is me. Each painting is spontaneous. I approach a canvas the same way a child with crayons might attack a blank sheet of paper. Ask a child to draw a tiger and they will surprise you with the results. Young children create the only honest way. That is until an adult decides these innocents should be taught how to paint properly. In the process of helping, the grown-ups totally kill all originality. But then, after all philosophical words have been spoken and all the creations are completed the only remaining things of any importance are the brush strokes and the colours.
I write mostly literary fiction and mostly books of short stories. Some of the stories include experiences gained from world travel. My short stories show ordinary people caught by unusual circumstances. Many of them have humour. Others have pathos. We all like to cry once in a while. I write mostly in the present time and mostly about the unsophisticated people of Vancouver Island.
I dislike historical fiction. A present day writer could not possibly know the facts of ancient Egypt. The writers were not there. According to researchers, Cleopatra was in her seventies when she met Mark Anthony, and she had arthritis of the spine, which would have made love making impossible.
Police know they cannot trust the information given by an eyewitness. Ask seven people who were present at an accident and you will hear seven different accounts. Source books are constantly translated. Facts become legends. Hollywood directors have a saying: When facts become legends, print the legends.
Evidence exists that a known thief with a similar name to Robin Hood lived in Yorkshire, England a few miles away from where I was born, but only for a very short time. Scarborough, a seaside town in Yorkshire has a bay called Robin Hood Bay. He probably did not keep company with a young woman under the greenwood trees. The English weather would have got him if the sheriff hadn't. He most likely never robbed the rich to give to the poor; he seems to have not been that good a person. Robin Hood most likely never saw Sherwood Forest. He would not have had the money or a way to get there, except by Shank's Pony (his own legs). If he had walked the highways or the low-ways a sheriff would have picked him up before he reached the Yorkshire boundaries. Records show a similar man died as a relatively unknown small-time and rather unpleasant crook. The legend makes him sound much more romantic than the facts do.
Artists and writers have a responsibility to record the events of their own time. Anachronistic writing is not a good way to work.
Writers should write about what they know, and where they are. If they do not do this, if they rely on older facts and irresponsible records they run the risk of being the published reader at a book presentation of their own book and during the question period hearing an older person say your facts are erroneous; this is not how things were during the Second World War. I know this to be true because I am a great deal older than you are. I was there.
Eliza Hemingway Hawkins
PO Box 544, Chemainus, BC