An Art for Healing Foundation initiave: Two renowned Canadian artists unveil art donated to The Montreal Children's Hospital

    MONTREAL, Oct. 6 /CNW Telbec/ - Today, October 6, 2008, from 3:00 to
5:00 pm, at The Montreal Children's Hospital, the Art for Healing Foundation
and The Montreal Children's Hospital Foundation will hold a vernissage for the
Veronica Tennant / Rita Briansky, "On Stage, Please" Gallery, a permanent
installation on the ground floor, D-Wing of The Montreal Children's Hospital.
This very special gallery - a true healing environment - was made possible
thanks to the donation of fourteen etchings by Rita Briansky.
    Artist Rita Briansky and the celebrated prima ballerina with the National
Ballet of Canada Veronica Tennant began collaborating in 1977. Tennant had
recently written the children's story "On Stage, Please" about a young girl's
quest to become a professional ballerina. Having seen and admired Briansky's
work, she requested that the artist illustrate her book. That summer, Briansky
traveled to Toronto, where she studied and sketched young dancers in their
ballet classes. Fourteen of the resulting tender etchings of the young dancers
are now permanently on display at The Montreal Children's Hospital.

    About the Art for Healing Foundation

    For the past six years, two very special "doctors" have been making
rounds in the halls, waiting rooms, treatment and examining rooms of The
Montreal Children's Hospital. These two volunteers may not actually have
medical degrees, but none-the-less they have been nicknamed the "Art Doctors"
by grateful staff. Earl Pinchuk and Gary Blair, two Montrealers, have combined
their business acumen and deep appreciation of art to create the Art for
Healing Foundation. Their goal is to transform the hospital environment and
thus reduce patient anxiety and foster a sense of well-being. Thanks to their
on-going efforts, original art and reproductions grace the walls of The
Children's and of twenty-tree other Montreal institutions.

    About Veronica Tennant

    Prima ballerina with the National Ballet of Canada for 25 years, Tennant
danced with both Rudolf Nureyev and Mikhail Baryshnikov. Since 1989, she has
garnered acclaim as a gifted filmmaker, writer, producer/director, winning
several awards, including the prestigious International Emmy Award. Tennant
has also produced and directed a large body of arts performance for
television. Lauded as a "great communicator", she has built an extensive
reputation as narrator, actor, broadcaster, and lecturer. In June, 2005
Tennant received her fifth honorary degree from McGill University. In 2001 she
was inducted into Canada's Walk of Fame, and recent honours include: Canada
Council's recipient of the Walter Carsen Prize for Excellence in the
Performing Arts and the Governor General's Performing Arts Award for Lifetime
Achievement. Privileged to be Canada's National Ambassador for UNICEF,
Veronica Tennant was the first dancer to be appointed to the Order of Canada
as Officer in 1975. In 2004, she was elevated to the rank of Companion, the
country's highest honour.

    About Rita Briansky

    Rita Briansky claims that she drew before she could write, a statement
all the more credible because her long and illustrious career reflects the
depth of her passion. At age four, Briansky immigrated to Canada from Poland
with her parents who struggled to provide their children with the promise of
their adopted country. It was Briansky's dream to study art but to do so she
would have to earn the five dollars to cover the cost of high school. Through
the kindness of the Yiddish poet Ida Massey, young Briansky found various
jobs, earning not only the coveted tuition fee, but also the additional six
dollars needed to enroll as a member of the "Y", where she met her mentor,
Alexander Bercovitch. Briansky's artistic journey took her through years of
study in Montreal and New York, where she honed her painting and etching
techniques. Rita Briansky's art has been shown in solo and group exhibitions
in Canada, the United States, Norway and France. She has been awarded two
Canada Council Art Awards and three Purchase Awards.

    Media are invited to schedule an appointment for a personal interview
with Veronica Tennant and Rita Briansky and/or Earl Pinchuk and Gary Blair on
October 6, between 2:00 and 2:45 pm at The Montreal Children's Hospital.

For further information:

For further information: Danielle-Gabrielle Roy, Director of
Communications, The Montreal Children's Hospital Foundation, (514) 934-4846,
ext. 29236, Cellular: (514) 238-4760,

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