Allie Beer: folk tales, why do we tell them?

It's impressive how a single story can inspire such diversity through different mediums! Visual artists from around the world are taking part in WHISTLE project, in an attempt to present a multi-sensory experience never attempted before in the Greek visual art scene. And that's because we do not think of visual art as an experience that when viewed fades away, but as an excuse, a triggering event, a reason to produce an artistic conversation and a literal dialogue with everyone interested. This is the way we feel visual art should work.

In this short article we meet visual artist, Allie Beer, from Canada.

Why did you decide to participate in Whistle Project?
After taking a several year hiatus from creating art, I had recently jumped back into creating when I saw a post on Facebook inviting artists to participate in the Whistle Project. The timing couldn’t have been more perfect as I was looking for opportunities to help push myself artistically and felt like the Whistle Project was a terrific way to help me get myself motivated and creating. 

What intrigued you?
I am social person and I am always interested in other people’s ideas and actions. I really liked the idea of collaborative artwork and the idea of connecting with people who have different perspectives on the same theme. It is an interesting concept that I did not try before and was excited to try it. Often, creating art can be a very internal, independent and self focussed process. I found the very idea of an open artist synergy to be very intriguing and worth exploring.

What was your workflow?
I took my time when creating for the Whistle Project. I found myself thinking quite a bit about the story's message and what folk tales mean to people around the world. It took me quite some time and several attempts to work through my interpretation of the story's meaning. Once I resolved my perspective and interpretation of the Whistle Project, my creative contribution flowed out quite quickly.

What was your artistic style, any influences?
There are so many wonderful artists, movements and styles out there to take lessons from and to be influenced by! Currently, I am very interested in studying art from the Post Impressionist movement. I am particularly focussed on Van Gogh, Degas and Manet. One of my favourite ways to spend an afternoon is at the Metropolitan Museum of Art in NYC and study their collection of Post Impressionist paintings and drawings.

Do you believe in superstitions?
I do not really believe in superstitions. I think they can be a fun way to connect with culture but, in general, I think they are really just a way, for people. to make sense and order over things that may be out of their control.

What do you want people to see in your works?
When I approached this piece, I approached it with these questions in mind: Why do we tell our children folk tales? What is the purpose of passing these stories from generation to generation? I came to the conclusion that we tell our children many of these stories as a way to guide them throughout their lives. There are so many folktales that give warnings about potential conflicts that the future might hold. Some of these themes include love, greed, truth and lies, friendship and safety. When people look at my piece, I hope they can see the light and shadows that these stories cast over our lives. I hope that they see the colour that these stories give to our daily routines and the hope that many parents hold onto for the future of their children.

Can you make a comment on the idea of collective storytelling?
I love the idea of collective storytelling because it adds such depth to a story. It helps people to see things from a new angle or to shed new light on an old story.

Why should people support this project? Why visit the exhibition?
Perhaps they might learn something more about themselves and the world around them.

Tell us a few words about the work you submitted to Whistle. How it is related to the story?
I don’t want to say too much about my painting accept while you are viewing it, I want you to think about: light, darkness, colours and the potential that we see in our children.

All the works created for WHISTLE project by Allie, will be available to the public during the transmedia exhibition.

Artist's statement: There is profound beauty in simplicity. As adults, that beauty can be dulled through our daily commutes, our long hours in front of screens, our need to be bigger, better, best. We can lose the small, true moments of life that build our memories. We can lose the spiritual connections we have to ourselves, to our loved ones, to the world. I am always trying to find and share those fleeting, nostalgic, connective moments. It is my hope to help others defrost the numbness that creeps into our lives and awaken people’s hearts through remembering the simple beauty of a moment, a memory, a colour, a scene or a feeling.

Find Allie Beer on INSTAGRAM