Janice Wright Cheney’s textile-based sculptures and installations consider the fragility of our present state, examine loss of wilderness, and imagine ecological life in the future. Her work reflects an ongoing interest in constructed distinctions between the cultural and the natural, as well as between the safe/domestic and the wild/disorderly. Depicting animal transgressions into the human world, she challenges our presumed detachment from nature.
Wright Cheney’s work is featured in the collections of the Art Gallery of Nova Scotia, the Department of Foreign Affairs and International Trade, the New Brunswick Museum, the Glenbow Museum, and Telus Canada at Telus Garden, Vancouver. Widow, her iconic sculpture of a grizzly bear swathed in roses, appeared in Oh Canada, a survey of contemporary Canadian art, held at MASS MoCA, North Adams, Massachusetts in 2012. Her solo exhibition Cellar was presented at the Beaverbrook Art Gallery (2012), the Art Gallery of Nova Scotia (2014), and at Southern Alberta Art Gallery in Lethbridge (2015). Most recently, her work Spectre was installed at the Anchorage Museum in Alaska. She has been elected to the Royal Canadian Academy of Arts, and is a recipient of the Strathbutler Award for Excellence in the Arts as well as the New Brunswick Lieutenant Governor's Award for High Achievement in Visual Arts.
Wright Cheney graduated from Mount Allison University with a Bachelor of Fine Arts in 1983, and completed an M.Ed. in Critical Studies at UNB (2003). She lives Fredericton, New Brunswick, Canada, where she teaches at the New Brunswick College of Craft and Design.