Bel Angeles — Claiming Space, Sharing Space - theHumm October 2023

Bel Angeles — Claiming Space, Sharing Space - theHumm October 2023

By Sally Hansen

Art… and Soul

A small woman with a huge appetite for social justice, Valley artist Bel Angeles’ art aspires to conjoin her community life and advocacies with her creativity. She succeeds admirably. Her innovative and captivating art challenges us to examine our prejudices and stereotypes. Angeles deploys her artistic creativity in ways that delight us, challenge us, and open our eyes.

Her goal is to create art that initiates a dialogue about structural inequalities, hoping thereby to strengthen empathy and solidarity. In her creative efforts to entice us into a fuller appreciation of what it means to be privileged, she dances effortlessly between overt and subtle, between accessible and unconventional. She invents artworks that challenge viewers to participate in rating themselves on a scale of privilege. She creates recto-verso (two-sided) displays that beguile and entice us into looking for the hidden/deeper meanings in her paintings.

Everyone has a story. Bel encourages you to look beyond the surface — to see that there is more. Her works are a call to empathy. When you look at the flipside of her recto-verso work there is an “ah-ha” moment when you get it. Bel’s hope is that we’ll keep her message in our consciousness, and it will open our eyes and hearts to ways in which we can make a difference for all those who live in the margins.

Art is also her recreation and her therapy. Many of her vibrant abstract paintings reflect the joie de vivre she has maintained throughout an astonishing career as an international humanitarian aid worker, working with refugees and internally displaced people. She started painting in 2006 as a form of therapy during high-stress jobs in chronic emergency situations all over the world. Her first teacher was an exiled Karen refugee artist (the Karen are an ethnic nationality of an estimated six million people who primarily reside in Burma), and she continued to learn from practicing artists in the different countries where she worked and lived. Primarily self-taught, she starts intuitively, often gravitating towards mark-making, layering and texture.

Claiming Space, Sharing Space

In her own words: “I explore ways to ‘claim space and share space’, acknowledging my identity as a woman immigrant person of colour that gives me conditions of marginality but also privilege. I also explore the intersections of art and social justice, creating art based on reflections about structural inequalities.”

Personal privilege is associated with the distribution of wealth, opportunities, access and participation. Angeles was raised with her seven siblings by a well-educated and civic-minded family in Manilla where she enjoyed the privilege of earning a B.A. in Psychology at the University of the Philippines. After a decade of working in various jobs, she embarked on a challenging and highly rewarding career with postings around the world for international development and humanitarian work in the Philippines, Thailand, Myanmar, Indonesia, Uganda, Rwanda, Jordan, Canada, Southeast Asia region and the East Africa region.

Along the way she garnered a Master of Arts in Development Studies at the International Institute for Social Studies at the Hague in the Netherlands. Her name (Maria Belen Angeles) appears in three publications, based on research commissioned by the FAO of the United Nations, and by UNESCO, for whom she did a study on trafficking of women in Africa. Her astonishing CV summarizes her work history by stating: “My main technical expertise is in gender, gender-based violence and working with refugees. I have extensive experience in senior-level management, board work, independent evaluations and organizational development. I am an active roster member of CARE International for Gender in Emergencies Advisor posts in humanitarian settings.”

A socially just society gives everyone equal access to wealth, opportunities and privileges. Angeles’ interest in and fight for social justice has never waned. Since coming to Canada in 2012 with her Canadian husband, she continues to claim space for herself and all other marginalized persons.

Angeles shares space by amplifying voices. Her intriguing art is only one way in which she does so. She is rooted in community. Her actions reflect her strong belief that it is important to participate in and contribute to the communities of which you are a part. Since moving near Perth she has volunteered with numerous charitable organizations and arts groups. She has been a board member and volunteer at Lanark County Interval House. After years of volunteering with The Table Community Food Centre in Perth, she has just joined them as their Operations Manager and Acting Volunteer Coordinator.

As always, her art continues to flourish and nourish her. She is a member of Arts Carleton Place and the Smiths Falls and District Arts Council. As a member of OMMA (Ottawa Mixed Media Artists Association) she displays mixed media pieces that include themes of housing insecurity and women, as well as a selection of glorious abstracts that reflect her love of life and her intrinsic, indomitable optimism.

Although her home is near Perth, she now works out of her studio at the recently opened Artisan Village at the Falls in Smiths Falls. The spacious and beautifully lit building features ten rooms of various sizes, several of which are leased by other local artists. Bel’s works are beautifully displayed, her studio is spacious and comfortable, and she smiles when she tells me she has been able to reclaim two rooms in the house she shares with her husband, Kevin Malseed. The couple share their fervor for making the world a better place. He is the founder and still active with KHRG, a grassroots Karen-led human rights organization established in 1992 and now operating across rural southeast Burma/Myanmar. This is how and where Bel met her first refugee art instructor.

Perth Autumn Studio Tour

The weather forecast predicts this will be a fantastic Thanksgiving holiday opportunity to meet this gifted and dedicated artist/social justice defender/community advocate. Bel Angeles will be participating in the annual Perth Autumn Studio Tour on October 7 and 8 as one of seven regional artists at Studio 4 at 590 Brooke Valley Road . Join her in her journey to claim space and share space, and enjoy her beautiful, original, inspiring art. Coordinates are on the back of her Artist Trading Card at the top of this page.WHO Bel Angeles

Artist Trading Card


Bel Angeles — Claiming Space, Sharing Space - theHumm October 2023

By Sally Hansen

Art… and Soul

A small woman with a huge appetite for social justice, Valley artist Bel Angeles’ art aspires to conjoin her community life and advocacies with her creativity. She succeeds admirably. Her innovative and captivating art challenges us to examine our prejudices and stereotypes. Angeles deploys her artistic creativity in ways that delight us, challenge us, and open our eyes.

Her goal is to create art that initiates a dialogue about structural inequaliti......


Crown and Pumpkin Studio Tour Returns - theHumm October 2023

It’s fall, it’s studio tour season, and the Crown and Pumpkin Studio Tour is returning for its 27th year on Thanksgiving Weekend! Taking place on October 7 and 8 from 10am to 4pm daily, the tour wends its way through Mississippi Mills’ colourful fall scenery with 15 stops in Almonte, Clayton and the surrounding rural area. Over fifty artists and artisans are showcasing their fine art and craft, fine foods and beverages.

The tour returns to its popular studio-visit format, with nine locations welc......


Fall Colours Walkat Blueberry Mountain - theHumm October 2023

It’s that time of year again — the air is getting chillier and the leaves are changing colour, which means it’s a perfect time to trek out to cliffLAND in Lanark County to view the stunning fall colours atop Blueberry Mountain!

The Mississippi Madawaska Land Trust (MMLT) invites you to come out to Blueberry Mountain for the annual Fall Colours Walk on Saturday, October 14 (rain date October 15). Howard Clifford and his family generously host this special day of fundraising e......


Jane Austen’s Lady Susan
Seduction, Scheming, and Lots of Laughs at Studio Theatre Perth
- theHumm October 2023

A comedy-drama that follows the fortunes of an attractive widow who uses her womanly wiles to seek financial security, Jane Austen’s Lady Susan opens at the Studio Theatre on October 12.

The play comes from New York writer Rob Urbinati and is based on the famous author’s novella. It tells the story of a thirty-something widow who leaves late 18th century high society in London for the country house owned by her brother-in-law Charles Vernon.

Given Lady Susan’s reputation as a......


2nd Annual Rocky Horror Picture Show - theHumm October 2023

Back for its second year, Studio Theatre presents the iconic Rocky Horror Picture Show on Saturday, October 28 on the big screen! Grab your friends and come sing along with Studio Theatre’s very own rockstar MC “British Columbia” (Columbia’s northern cousin, pictured below).

Rock out in the aisles to the tunes that are sure to make you shiver with antici…

…pation, such as Science Fiction Double Feature, Toucha, Toucha, Touch Me, Time Warp and Sweet Trans......


Meet Leanne Baker! - theHumm October 2023

By Leanne Baker

As someone who is passionate about arts and entertainment, and who was born and raised in Almonte and is now living in Carleton Place, I am very excited to be working for theHumm! Throughout the years my family and I picked up theHumm every month, looking forward to having intel on what would be going on in the Ottawa Valley for art, entertainment, opinions or ideas. I believe it is so important to have an easy, accessible source for things happening locally, as it provides opportunity for visito......


It’s Two Thumbs Up, Mr. Ebert!
Mississippi Mills Film Society’s First Screening
- theHumm October 2023

By Glenda Jones

Thanks to an overwhelming show of support, the Mississippi Mills Film Society is on the cusp of inauguration. Organizers Marny McCook and Heather Loube, along with Wanda MacDonald, Dale and Elizabeth Dunning, have been liaising with the Toronto International Film Festival (TIFF) since February to bring top-rated films to the community on a monthly basis on Sunday afternoons. St. Andrew’s United Church in Pakenham has become a cultural hub for Mississippi Mills. It is an ideal venue for showi......


Agatha Christie’s The Mousetrap - theHumm October 2023

By Submitted Smiths Falls Community Theatre

Friday the 13th! What a delicious day to open our fall murder mystery! And not just any old murder mystery. The Mousetrap opened in London’s West End in 1952 and ran continuously until March 16, 2020, when the stage performances had to be temporarily discontinued. It then re-opened on May 17, 2021. The longest-running West End show, it has had by far the longest run of any play in the world. After the show it is always requested that the audience not reveal the murderer, s......


The Big Purge - theHumm October 2023

By Glenda Jones

There’s not a day goes by that someone doesn’t tell me they’re “downsizing”. Maybe it’s because we’re all of a certain age, but I think we’re tired of hauling around possessions we likely have forgotten we even owned.

A chance meeting on Facebook required me to open storage boxes to find pictures of my grandfather. What a treasure trove I discovered… completely reeking of mould! I managed to retrieve a couple, and then with not a speck of regret, fired the rest into the gar......


Get a Clue… Ticket! - theHumm October 2023

It is sure to be a dark and stormy night when six guests assemble at a remote mansion where they become isolated when the weather washes out the road. They are trapped there, when the unthinkable happens — murder! Come help the Mississippi Mudds figure out WHO did it, WHERE they were, and with WHAT weapon. Things are not always as they seem…

Directed by Adam Pelletier and produced by Cheryl Swackhammer, a small but dedicated cast has been working hard perfecting lines and timing for the hi......


EODL One Act Festival - theHumm October 2023

North Grenville Community Theatre is proudly hosting the Eastern Ontario Drama League One Act Festival from November 3 to November 5 at the North Grenville Municipal Centre in Kemptville.

Eastern Ontario Drama League (EODL) is an organization that supports community theatre groups with new innovative ways, grants and student scholarships. To make it interesting for their membership, there are two festivals held every year by host groups. One of them is the festival of one act plays.



Passionate Writer: Powerful Biography
An Interview with Charlotte Gray about her latest book: Passionate Mothers, Powerful Sons: The Lives of Jennie Jerome Churchill
- theHumm October 2023

By John Pigeau

During a pandemic lockdown, Charlotte Gray’s long-time editor, Phyllis Bruce, told Gray about a remarkably interesting fact: that Jennie Jerome and Sara Delano were born in 1854 within 100 kilometers of each other in New York State. Gray, one of Canada’s finest historians, was reasonably intrigued. So intrigued, in fact, that she decided to write a dual biography of the mothers of Winston Churchill and Franklin Roosevelt, Passionate Mothers, Powerful Sons: The Lives of Jennie Jerome Churchi......


Love On Fire — Patrick John Mills is Back! - theHumm October 2023

Last year, Renfrew artist and arts entrepreneur Patrick John Mills spent 52 days in a coma, 62 days on life support, and 99 days in hospital. He lost 86 pounds. He was not expected to live.

From October 7 to November 4, Mills is celebrating his extraordinary recovery with a solo exhibition titled Love On Fire. His exuberant paintings are his way of communicating the love, feelings, gratitude and spiritual energy relating to his incredible journey back to life.

For more than a year he was not ......


Blues at The Cove: the Tony D Band - theHumm October 2023

By Seamus Cowan

Did you say Blues at... The Cove? Yes indeed! For 17 incredible years of music, laughter, community and overall great times, Blues on the Rideau has been one of the longest-running blues music series in Canada, but now the torch is passing to The Cove Inn.

Thanks to the team of James Doran, his wife Diane Leduc-Doran and their Choose the Blues Productions, thousands of ecstatic blues and live music fans have flocked to The Cove to enjoy evenings of dining and dancing to Canada’s greate......


Spinning Yarns about Spinning Yarns - theHumm October 2023

By Susan Macaulay

Cathy Giles has a picture of her mom working at the Appleton mill when she was only fourteen. Still, she was delighted to spot a similar photograph on Facebook in a poster advertising ticket sales for Spinning Yarns: The Millworkers’ Musical.“What the heck? Mom’s on Facebook!” Giles laughed as she decribed her initial reaction to me over the phone.She had been a little more circumspect in an earlier email she sent to Kris Riendeau. “What a surprise I got when I saw the Spinning Yarns playbill on F......


“Music to Memories”
Ottawa Valley Memory Loss/Dementia Choir
- theHumm October 2023

Trinity St. Andrew’s is an affirming faith community within the United Church of Canada, located in Renfrew. The music program at Trinity St. Andrew’s is expanding in a new direction to provide a monthly community group singing program as an outlet for those in Renfrew County who are living with memory loss or any form of dementia. Entitled “Music to Memories”, it is designed for those with memory loss or dementia to attend with their caregivers, and is also open to family and friends. Research is only scratching the surface of the impacts of music on the brain thus far, but we are aware ......


34 Years of Exceptional Gift Choices - theHumm October 2023

The Christmas in the Valley Artisan Show is thrilled to be back again this year on November 4 and 5 from 10am to 4pm each day in the upper hall of the John Levi Community Centre, located at 182 Bridge Street in Almonte. With over twenty artisans and crafters presenting their original creations in a relaxed, friendly and festive atmosphere, you are sure to find gifts with originality, quality and attention to detail. Forgo the gift cards, big box stores and stressful malls and make this yo......


Waste Not! - theHumm October 2023

The Carleton Place Environmental Advisory Committee (CPEAC) in cooperation with the Carleton Place Chamber of Commerce, proudly presents Waste Not! Waste Reduction and Composting in your Home, Business and Community. Come and learn more about what we can do to reduce waste and create a healthier, more sustainable community.

This free presentation takes place on Friday, October 20 from 10–11:30am at the CP Town Hall auditorium, located at 175 Bridge Street. Pre-registration is required at <......


The Red TrilliumFall Studio Tour  - theHumm October 2023

On October 14 and 15, come out and enjoy a lovely day or two taking the self-guided Red Trillium Fall Studio Tour in rural West Ottawa, only 35 minutes from downtown Ottawa.This is a wonderful opportunity to visit with artists in their studios where they create their work.Some will be hosting guest artists as well. There will be a warm welcome for you at all stops along the tour. You can visit the artists’ studios, have lunch at local restaurants, and enjoy the beautiful countrysi......


A Conversation with Frances Itani - theHumm October 2023

The Merrickville Readers Book Club and Beth Donovan Hospice are hosting an afternoon discussion with Giller Prize finalist Frances Itani. Frances Itani, C.M., is an award-winning bestselling author who has published 18 books (novels, stories, poetry and children’s work), as well as many reviews, articles and essays. She has travelled widely and has lived, worked and studied in seven Canadian provinces. She has also lived in England, U.S.A., Switzerland, Germany, Italy, Croatia and Cyprus......


Attractive Village Makes Great Poster! - theHumm October 2023

By Garwood Tripp

No one taking in the sights of Lanark County would miss a visit to the village of Pakenham. To call attention to Pakenham as a tourism destination and a peaceful retreat from the agitation of city life, the local Civitan Club has created a travel poster.

In the half-century before television, posters were a recognized art form and an important advertising medium. Travel posters — featuring tourist attractions and often sponsored by the railway or ocean liner that would take you there — we......


Creativity Celebrated Stone Manor Studios Announces Seasonal Workshops - theHumm October 2023

This October, Stone Manor Studios aims to use Halloween and the holidays as a way to promote artistic engagement. Anchored in its core principles of immersion, creativity and nurturing, the studio is rolling out a captivating lineup of seasonal workshops, offering participants much more than mere skill development.

Adopting a long-held tradition to celebrate the holidays through artistic pursuits, Stone Manor Studios invites people looking to try new things to delve deep into its immer......


October at the Textile Museum - theHumm October 2023

After a wildly successful Fibrefest event in September, the Mississippi Valley Textile Museum has more great events and exhibits coming up in October (and beyond).

Create a “Nature Narrative”

On Saturday, October 7 from 10am to noon, create an evocative and exciting composition that combines the work of your hands with that of Mother Nature. Join Among the Garbage and the Flowers artist Alice Vander Vennen for “Nature Narratives”, a $50 worksho......


Autumn at the Heritage House Museum - theHumm October 2023

As the colours brighten and the days grow shorter, the list of things to do at Heritage House Museum in Smiths Falls grows longer!

Fall Fest

Come out to the Museum for Fall Fest, taking place on Sunday, October 1 from 11am to 2pm. There will be wagon rides ($5 per person), a BBQ, bouncy castles, midway games, music, a vendor market and tons of fall activities. The museum will be open by donation.

Smiths Falls Ghost To......


Lanark County Female First Responders Camp - theHumm October 2023

Lanark County Paramedic Service (LCPS) is participating in the Lanark County Female First Responders Camp. This is a two-day immersive camp for self-identifying females aged 15 to 20 who reside in Lanark County. The camp will be held on the evening of October 13 and the full day on October 14.

“The goal is to provide a glimpse into firefighting, paramedics and law enforcement, and encourage young women to see these as viable career opportunities,” explains Paramedic Superintendent Amanda Taylor. “This is the first year we’ve been involved in the camp, and we are looking forward to the......


Annual Book Sale
Friends of the Mississippi Mills Public Library
Sale Supports Ongoing Programming
- theHumm October 2023

The Friends of the Mississippi Mills Public Library (MMPL) annual book sale is happening in October, and organizers invite everyone to come out and buy books to help support library programming at the Almonte and Pakenham branches.

All books can be purchased — by donation, cash only — at the Rexall Mall, located at 430 Ottawa Street in Almonte (just follow the signs!). The sale takes place on Friday, October 20 from 4–8pm, Saturday, October 21 from 10am to 4pm, and Sunday, October 22 from 1......


The Forest as Sanctuary - theHumm October 2023

From September 29 to November 3, Sivarulrasa Gallery is delighted to present Sherry Park: Sanctuary, a solo exhibition of new paintings by artist Sherry Park. The paintings are based on artist residencies she completed in Cape Breton Highlands National Park, Nova Scotia (2019) and Chateau Orquevaux, France (2022). The works explore the forest as sanctuary, evoking the serenity of the natural environment unspoiled by human intervention. Working with oils and acrylics, her......


Eddy & the Stingrays Return to Almonte - theHumm October 2023

Canada’s top ’50s, ’60s and ’70s show band, Eddy & the Stingrays, is returning to Almonte on Saturday, October 14 at the Almonte Civitan Hall. Always a sellout, the dinner and dance event kicks off at 5:30pm. Tickets are $60 per person, with proceeds benefiting the Almonte General Hospital Fairview Manor Foundation.

But that’s not all… This year’s organizers have added a new twist to the evening of great music, dancing and prizes! Two lucky winners will join Eddy and th......


“Fall” in Love with Cedar Hill Christmas Tree Farm - theHumm October 2023

By Jessica Plager

Picture-perfect in every direction with lush colours, textures, and lots of history, Cedar Hill Christmas Tree Farm is over 200 years old with many original features, including the house itself. Located on the Indian Creek near Pakenham, it has evolved over the years from a sheep farm to a berry farm and now a Christmas tree farm. The Martin family has taken this historic farm to the next level of Agritourism and were recognized as Ottawa’s Best Winter Attraction by the 2023 Ottawa Awards......


Creative Recovery
Post-Covid Grants Help Two Local Arts Organizations to Carry On
- theHumm October 2023

The Covid-19 pandemic was challenging for many community sectors. Arts and Culture organizations, which were not deemed “essential services” during lockdowns, were hard hit when they had to close their doors.

The Perth and District Community Foundation (PDCF) recently helped two local arts organizations, MERA (McDonalds Corners and Elphin Recreation and Arts) and the Mississippi Valley Textile Museum, adapt to the long-term impacts of the pandemic through grants it made to them from th......


Bird Migration
May Your Journey Be Safe
- theHumm October 2023

By Lise Balthazar

Ornithologists have a special term: zugunruhe, from the German zug (meaning “move”) and unruhe (“restlessness”). It is a fairly obscure word used mainly in academic settings. But for everyday birders like us, the phenomenon is simply known as migration.

Migration might be a simpler word, but the phenomenon itself is complex. Birders and scientists alike have been studying the travel patterns of birds for hundreds of years. Ancient Greeks thought that ......


Expressions of Art on Thanksgiving Weekend
Juried Show at the Carp Agricultural Hall
- theHumm October 2023

The West Carleton Arts Society (WCAS) is delighted to announce that its signature show, Expressions of Art, is returning this fall! This exhibition and sale will showcase the creative talents of more than thirty top artists from the Ottawa region, all selected through a formal, independent jurying process. The show has been held annually for more than 25 years and is currently presented at the Carp Agricultural Hall.

It will be a fabulous show! Expect a high quality, vibrant display of......


Leta and Don Cormier
Featured Artists at General Fine Craft
- theHumm October 2023

Among many of the new items on display this month at General Fine Craft in Almonte is the fine and functional pottery of Leta and Don Cormier. For nearly 50 years they have shared a life and a ceramics studio. Along the way they’ve become renowned specialists in high-fired stoneware/reduction atmosphere pottery, which has distinctive techniques and aesthetic qualities.

Leta and Don work independently on their own pieces, but share raw materials, glazes and kiln firings. Both ......


Prepare for a Scare!
Mississippi Mills Youth Centre BringsHaunted House to the Textile Museum
- theHumm October 2023

The Mississippi Mills Youth Centre (MMYC) is proud to partner with the Mississippi Valley Textile Museum (MVTM) this October to host the 5th annual Haunted House Fundraiser! This highly anticipated annual fundraiser supports free and low-cost youth programs offered by MMYC all year long. Scaring the socks off Almonte since their first Haunted House at the youth centre in 2018, volunteers aged 10–18 have been dedicated to raising funds for the community organization, and are now excited......


Generous Helpings
A Safari Dinner Fundraiser for The Lanark County Food Bank
- theHumm October 2023

By Denise Beaulne

It’s time to prepare for a fun night out on the town, house-hopping for a Safari Dinner on the evening of Saturday, October 21. In a nutshell, this feast takes everyone from table to table on a 3-course journey through tasty trails in and around Almonte.

Here’s the best part — you don’t know who you are dining with until people arrive!

To participate, you need to:

Register as a couple — join with your nephew, your spouse, your friend…

Agree to host an appetizer, an......


Guatemala Stove Project Online Auction - theHumm October 2023

The Guatemala Stove Project (GSP) is a charity run by local volunteers who raise funds to build safe, efficient masonry cookstoves in western Guatemala. Built by Guatemalan masons out of concrete, mortar and steel, the GSP-funded stoves greatly improve the lives of rural Maya families. The stoves include a metal chimney which removes toxic smoke from the home. The enclosed firebox shields children from open flames and greatly improves fuel efficiency. This saves the limited resources of ......


Fall Workshops at MERA — No Frills, New Skills! - theHumm October 2023

This fall, MERA (McDonalds Corners and Elphin Recreation and Arts) will have the Schoolhouse bustling with all sorts of activities for people of all ages. Join them at 974 Dalhousie Concession 9A in McDonalds Corners to discover how you can bring more arts into your life!

Choose from one of five workshops on offer — or do them all! Workshops take place on Saturdays and include coffee or tea and great company. Please register by emailing MERA’s friendly administrator at .

In Glass Art with Ju......


Two Sisters - theHumm October 2023

By David Hinks

A critical component of growing vegetables is the development of strategies for dealing with wildlife. The previous two years saw racoons rampage through the patches of sweet corn being grown by the Blakeney Project of the Lanark County Food Bank (the Hunger Stop). Our two-acre garden measures about 200 feet by 600 feet and is on the edge of a 25-foot-deep ravine that serves as a four-lane highway for racoons. This year we were determined to win the battle.



How Can Worms Combat Climate Change? - theHumm October 2023

By Geri Baker

Did you know that you can save money and help nature in a big way by the small effort of composting? Many people are still new to this idea, so here is a little guidance. Nature is both simple and complex, which makes it challenging and beautiful. The KISS (keep it sweet and simple) principle really applies to vermicomposting! A few worms in a container can convert all your raw kitchen scraps into beautiful nutrient-rich black earth to feed your plants. Also compostable indoors are floor sweepings, vacuum waste, hair, fur, feathers, string, thread, shavings and al......