In the Offing
April 7, 2014

In the Offing includes drawings of lighthouse, ships, Sable Island, historic tattoos and more. The show runs April 8 to April 11 in the Maritime Museum of the Atlantic's Craft Gallery. Above, Peggy's Cove Lighthouse by Janeva Faircloth.

NSCAD’s Foundation Drawing II students have created drawings in response to the permanent collection of the Maritime Museum of the Atlantic and the Art Boat. The drawings address themes such as historic tattoos, celestial navigational charts, gay sailors, ancient Chinese ships of sail, trans-oceanic postcards, the wild horses of Sable Island, the Halifax Explosion, The Titanic, lighthouses, historic deep sea scuba gear and an archeological examination of detritus cast off from ships. The students, taught by instructor Melinda Spooner, were introduced to their research through a workshop with Garry Shutlak from the Nova Scotia Archives.

As part of the project the NSCAD art students were greatly inspired by and worked to build the Art Boat, located in the historic shed of the Maritime Museum. The Art Boat is an incredible new community project that invites people of all ages and abilities to build a traditional cargo boat right on the historic Halifax waterfront. The boat will be used as a year round performance art piece, sustainable off grid living model, artist-in-residence housing and waterfront art gallery.

The title of this art exhibition comes from a nautical phrase.  The term "In the Offing" refers to a ship first coming into sight on the horizon line.

When something is In The Offing it is considered to be likely to happen, possibly imminently. The origin of this saying can be found on the high seas in the 17th Century. ‘Offing’ was nautical slang for ‘Offshore’ and a ship approaching a port or coastline, close enough to be seen from land, was considered to be ‘in the offing’ (

Within this show it is a metaphor for discovery including the celebratory moment of an artist’s first art exhibition. Participating students include: Nina Balbo, Michael Comeau, Thomas Copper, Vivi Dai, Janeva Faircloth, Paige Fraser, Chelsea Innes, Katie MacDonald, Carissa Marchand, Dylan Pemberton, Coral White, Sydney Wyatt, and Tiandongding Zuo.

“This is awesome for me and everyone in our class that we get to be in a show this early on,” said Michael Comeau, a NSCAD Foundation student from New Glasgow, N.S. “I think it’s a great opportunity.”

The exhibition will take place in the Maritime Museum’s Craft Gallery. The opening reception takes place Tuesday, April 8 from 5 to 6 p.m. and will be on display from Tuesday, April 8 to Friday, April 11th. 

NSCAD’s Foundation Division would like to thank the staff of the Maritime Museum, Garry Shutlak and the members of the Art Boat. If you would like to take part in the Art Boat project please visit the Maritime Museum’s website for more information. To learn more about the exhibition contact Melinda Spooner at

 Above, Harpoon Wave by Dylan Pemberton. Below, Untitled by Carissa Marchand.