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Dawna Rose and Betsy Rosenwald: Journal of the Plague Year(s)

In February 2021, Saskatoon-based artists Dawna Rose and Betsy Rosenwald presented an exhibition of paintings created in response to the pandemic and politics of 2020 at 330g Projects in Saskatoon. Taking its title from Daniel Defoe’s book Journal of the Plague Year, the exhibition included works that each artist painted on post-consumer waste cardboard, a material choice inspired by signs the artists witnessed at the 2017 Women’s March in New York City.

Event/Exhibition meta autogenerated block.


Remai Modern

As the “Plague Year” morphed into years, Rose and Rosenwald continued their creative and passionate response to pandemic and politics during residencies at Pouch Cove Foundation, Newfoundland and Labrador; and Saskatoon galleries AKA artist-run centre, PAVED Arts and Art Placement. As political disquiet continues to escalate and the close of the second year of the global pandemic approaches, the artists will share a record of their journal to date and create new work on site in Remai Modern’s Connect Gallery. 

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Installation view, Dawna Rose and Betsy Rosenwald, Journal of the Plague Year(s), 2022, Remai Modern, Saskatoon.
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Installation view, Dawna Rose and Betsy Rosenwald, Journal of the Plague Year(s), 2022, Remai Modern, Saskatoon.

Curatorial Team

Remai Modern


Dawna Rose

Dawna Rose lives and works in Saskatoon. She uses a wide variety of media and materials in her artwork and is currently concentrating on painting in oils and gouache. Rose has published two graphic books and a Super 8 animation film. One of the books, Smoking with My Mother won an Alcuin Society national book award. Her sculpture The Perfect Deck was featured in the Little Worlds exhibition at the Dunlop Art Gallery (Regina) and the Mendel Art Gallery (Saskatoon). A solo painting exhibition at Illingworth Kerr Gallery in Calgary was curated by Wayne Baerwaldt.

Rose completed an MFA at the University of Saskatchewan. She has worked in residence at Emma Lake Artists’ Retreat, Artscape Toronto Island, KIAC (Dawson City, YT), The Vermont Studio Centre, Gullkistan (Iceland), and most recently at Pouch Cove Foundation (NL) and AKA Artist-Run (SK). 

Betsy Rosenwald

Betsy Rosenwald lives and works in Saskatoon, Saskatchewan. Her paintings incorporate a variety of media, including wax, oil, drawing media, and photography. They have been included in exhibitions across Canada and the US, as well as internationally in Japan, England, Italy, and Switzerland. She has collaborated with writers on several projects, including Pliny’s Knickers (with poets Steven Ross Smith and Hilary Clark), which received the 2005 bp Nichol chapbook award.Rosenwald has completed artist residencies at AKA Artist-Run (Saskatoon, SK), Pouch Cove Foundation (NL), Artscape Gibraltar Point (Toronto), Klondike Institute for Art and Culture (Dawson City, YT), Emma Lake Artist/Writers Retreat (Sask) and the MacDowell Colony (Peterborough, NH).

Born in Boston, she moved to New York City to complete an MFA at Brooklyn College (Brooklyn, NY). While in New York, she was member of PS122, an artist-run studio collective, and her work was represented by the seminal East Village gallery, Civilian Warfare.