Lifestyle & Parenting

Wild Horses

April 12, 2017

As both Earth Day and the anniversary of our nation’s birth approach, we are revelling in the opportunity to rediscover some of Canada’s rugged beauty.

Last month, Canadian womenswear label Judith & Charles hosted an exhibition of works by famed photographer Roberto Dutesco. The Romanian-born, Canadian-based artist began his career as a fashion photographer in Montreal, but the natural world soon caught his lens. This passion for the environment is no better represented than with his decades-long commitment to documenting the wild horses of Sable Island—a spit of land off the coast of Nova Scotia that is home to roughly 400 feral horses. Since his initial visit in 1994, Dutesco has returned to this small, crescent-shaped sandbar six more times to document the spirit of the remote horse sanctuary, and the images have been on permanent exhibition in Soho since 2006.

judith & charles

Legend has it that the horses came to live on the island through a series of shipwrecks that stranded the animals on its shores but, in reality, they were released on the island in the 18th century.

Seeing the images in person, displayed in the concourse outside Judith & Charles’ Oakridge Centre boutique, and backed by the classic creams and blacks of the label’s elegant spring collection, was a revelation. It’s no wonder the majority of the limited-edition photographs (some priced at upwards of $13,000) had sold stickers next to them by opening night. It was all for a good cause: a percentage of proceeds from the sale of the artwork went to Judith & Charles founder Charles Le Pierrès’ charity, Charlie’s Foundation—a Canadian not-for-profit that teaches children of the Dominican Republic English through the sport of tennis, to aid in their ability to work in the region’s tourism industry, and improve their future career prospects.

judith & charles

judith & charles

The exhibition is now closed, but you can view some of my shots from the Vancouver show, or enjoy scenes from the Toronto opening in this video. There was also a coffee table book on display, which was available to purchase for the cause.

Judith & Charles

My favourite image was by far the one selected for the Judith & Charles window display of a single horse (pictured above), its salt-kissed mane being tossed by the wind; but each one held its own little wisp of magic. Wild horses couldn’t drag me away. —Kelsey Klassen | |


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