Goward HouseHome Away From Home
September 28, 2018 TO November 28, 2018
Reception: Sunday September 30, 2018 1:30 TO 3:30 P.M.
The Pender Island Artisans present…
The Red Tree Artists’ Collective
Terry Chantler Hedi Kovacs Diane Kremmer Kathleen Lightman
Diane MacDonald Jamie McLean Mira Petrie Judy Walker
As a child, I marvelled at the sparkling diversity of life in the little river on our family farm — darting stickleback, minnows, catfish, skittering water boatmen, dragonflies, water snails, damselflies, and much more — it all had me in awe. When the farm was later sold and every last bit of that beautiful life was lost to the chemical ‘advancements’ of corporate farming I was outraged into a lasting environmental activism that shaped my several professional careers and still informs the verses and drawings I make today.
At Nottingham university, UK, I was fascinated by Dürer, Picasso, Duchamp and the surrealists, but since I was studying electrical engineering I mostly learned about wave-particle peculiarities and physicists’ puzzlement over how consciousness helps to define and identify a ‘real’ world—a subject I later studied for decades under an eminent, traditional, hilarious, Tibetan Buddhist master in Victoria, BC. At the heart of those teachings is the direct realization of a pure view of a cosmos empty of any permanent, concrete constituents, where incessant change and interdependence enable both the temporary coming together, and the inevitable coming apart, of literally everything, everywhere, including our own brief, familiar lives on this precious, now ailing (but not defenceless) planet. In deep appreciation for this perspective, I call the body of work I have made in art and verse ‘On Holiday From The Void’.
I draw original images directly in pen with black ink (usually listening to Mahler) then scan them into a computer where I colour them with a simple paint program. Then I make up verse, on many themes—music, environment, philosophy, psychology, mysticism, cosmology, sometimes pure whimsy— anything seeming to advance a utility in serious nonsense. I combine the words and images and make limited edition, archival, digital (giclée) prints.
For the past five years I have been privileged to show my work as a member of Red Tree Gallery, on N. Pender Island, BC, where I have lived for 20 years. Thank you sincerely for your interest; may all be well and happy.
Living on the West Coast of Canada, Diane finds strong inspiration in the natural setting surrounding her, enabling her to create unique paintings full of whimsy and wonder. Working mostly in acrylics, her intricate creations are populated with vibrant characters.
The Fables and Myths I read as a child keep resurfacing in my work, never ceasing to ignite my imagination. I find it fascinating how the adult mind re-envisions and rethinks these tales. Many ‘what ifs’ pop into my head, possibly a new chapter or character being created or even an entirely new story. It is as if the characters in the stories are aging and changing along with me.
Usually, I create a piece by starting with the spark of an idea written down on paper along with a rough sketch. From there, if and when the idea does make it to the easel, once the acrylic paint touches the cradleboard, things truly start to take shape. Color adds dimension and mood to the piece and can take my original concept in a completely new direction.
I work to bring a sense of wonder, mystery, and whimsy into my art. Often I’ll have the subjects in my paintings looking out with an engaging eye – attempting to make contact and connect with the viewer.
Diane’s work can be found in private collections in Canada, the U.S., Germany, Asia, Australia and the United Kingdom.
My first love was watercolour for its fluid and luminous qualities. After many years, I discovered silk fusion as a craft, and have spent the past 15 years developing its use in my own fine art practice; with its unpredictability and luminosity it shares many of the challenges and joys of watercolour. Using the capricious gossamer silk fibres to bring images into being engenders an awareness of the myriad causes and circumstances interacting to bring every moment into being.
Last year, with a yen for drawing and painting, I returned to using pastel. While the pastel medium offers more control, my subjects are sky and water, which shift and change moment by moment. Far-flung events that ride on weather systems across the globe affect us with their beauty and demonstrate the power of nature and our small place in it, challenging our human fantasies of control and reminding us of our connectedness.
Once again, looking for new challenges, I am revisiting acrylic painting taking an intuitive and process-oriented approach, letting the image arise and surprise and direct me. I look forward to seeing how this will influence my work in other media.
In an increasingly virtual world, I feel a strong need to produce and to experience art whose origins are unmistakably in the phenomenal world—tangible, textural, dimensional objects bearing the direct touch of their maker. These qualities evoke an intimacy and immediacy of communication between artist and viewer in a specific time and place.
I received a BFA in visual art with a specialization in illustration from Moore College of Art and Design in Philadelphia, Pa., attended the Instituto Allende in San Miguel Mexico and did two years of further study in painting at Victoria College of Art with Jim Gordaneer, Jack Wise, and Flemming Jorgensen. I completed additional coursework in Photography at Tyler School of Fine Arts, Temple University and painting at Metchosin Summer School of the Arts.
Over the years I have participated in numerous exhibitions including the Sidney Fine Art Show and the BC Festival of the Arts. My work can be found in Canada, the US and England and for the past 12 years was on show at the former Red Tree Gallery on Pender Island, with a yearly feature month. I continue to show with the Red Tree Artists Collective. My experience has included work in the field of commercial art and illustration. I am also a Registered Art Therapist approaching thirty-five years’ experience in the field of mental health.
Even before Diane moved to Japan in 1972, she embraced the challenge of photography. Once there the bathtub became a darkroom until it was needed for bathing the new baby. Postings to Italy, Norway, Malaysia and Saudi Arabia, punctuated by yearly vacations on Pender Island followed, providing wonderful camera fodder for the next 35 years.
Back permanently on Pender Island, Diane devoted more time to photography. She summarizes her commitment saying, “Finding a photographic expression that is both unique and universal has become my passion”. Diane has studied under Jennifer Spelman, Eddie Soloway, Sean Kernan, Cig Harvey, Keith Carter and others. Her eleven years in Japan continue to inform her aesthetic, contributing both structure and simplicity to her work. Her subject matter is thoughtful and eclectic, with emphasis on the natural environment. She expresses her photographic approach this way: “I have taken photographs since I was young and have always enjoyed trying to ‘frame’ the wonder and often fleeting beauty such that it lingers beyond the moment. Seeing the world anew and finding ways to honour our daily environment is important as we, as photographers, give witness to why we need to work hard to reverse environmental degradation and encourage each of us to ‘take a second look’”.
Monica Petrie (MIRA)
I am a fabric artist and dyer, working from my home on Pender Island.
I have been exploring and producing fabric arts for many years, beginning with a course in batik at Evelyn Roth’s Summer School of Art in Vancouver, 1969. My interest in art began with my studies in art and art history at school and university.
As an Early Childhood Educator I taught creative art to young children.
I have always been interested in pattern and colour. Perhaps it was the fascination with my paisley comforter in my childhood that resurfaced when I began working with wax and dyes. I batiked clothing, wall hangings and mandalas.
However, working with wax did not transition well to my island life. After taking workshops with the Maiwa Textile Symposia in Vancouver, I began working with Shibori techniques to create pattern. Shibori is a traditional Japanese technique of manipulating cloth in various ways to create areas which resist the dyes while other areas take up the dyes.
I work on ready-made clothing and scarves, made of natural fibres such as cotton, silk, rayon and hemp. I use both procion fibre reactive dyes and natural dyes such as indigo. With my hand cut blocks and stencils I create solid images with fabric paints.
I continue to be inspired by natural forms such as the spiral in ferns, and the shape of sea stars. And, by prehistoric art on carved stone and painted caves.
I am a founding member of the Red Tree Gallery on Pender Island – 2005 to 2017, and currently a member of the Red Tree Artists’ Collective.