Dorothy Giesbrecht, Paulie Haines & Linda Stringfellow
September 20 - October 15, 2016
Opening reception: Friday September 23, 7-9pm
"Weathered – Circadian - Collected"
Long-time friends Paulie Haines, Linda Stringfellow and Dorothy Giesbrecht have combined their creativity and originality in “Weathered - Circadian - Collected”. Their shared creative process revisits the familiar with new insight, and responds to the unfamiliar with imagination and simplicity.
The result is a diverse and fascinating acrylic, oil and multi-media art show that combines realism, abstract expression and improvisation.
Artists' Statements & Bios
Seasonal creek that drains our small acreage
Cygnet Creek, our home water source
Driftwood Creek with its sparkling turbulence
The Bulkley River that meanders, then rockets through canyons to
The Skeena that has inspired water dependent communities
And then the amazing Pacific Ocean
I’m fascinated by the parallel between the crescendo of these waterways, and the escalating excitement and impact of individual and then shared creativity.
Many of my pieces are inspired by the sight and sound of moving water and by the collected and recollected since a recent loss of “stuff” in a recent house fire.
Dorothy Giesbrecht has made the Bulkley Valley and Driftwood her home for the past 40 years. She and her husband Wes came here via the Fraser Valley, Vancouver and Penticton. They left their teaching jobs for a year and explored the BC Interior for a place to build a log house and start a family. Dorothy has been inspired by the discovery and continuing feeling of acceptance and inclusion in the Smithers community. She has participated in and helped initiate arts community projects, especially those that celebrate the people and landscape of the Bulkley Valley and Northwest BC: violin in 'Two Flutes & a Violin' ensemble, cello in the Smithers Community Orchestra and with fellow improvisers, coordinator of the multi-arts 'Salmon Symphony' event, charter director of Driftwood Foundation, and past manager of Smithers Art Gallery.
People and things are full, fresh and solid when they’re young. In this stage we take things for granted. When they’ve been around for a while, people and things may begin to sag, pale, break. They can develop a patina. The effects of time and weather lend character and richness to people and their “stuff”.
I love the contrast of young and old, strong and vulnerable, innocent and wise, new and weathered.
Becoming weathered is part of the life cycle, like “being in the autumn of one’s life”. Old buildings are fun to paint as I muse about them returning to the earth. Old people have wrinkles that lead me to fantasize about their stories. Old “stuff” is usually more interesting to me than new “stuff”… the lines are prettier, the “vibes” are better, there may be rust and holes and laciness.
New people and things are miracles. Old people and things have survived, lived lives, and are miracles that have been tested, and weathered.
I love to see if I can capture whatever draws me to a subject. While I am looking closely in order to do that, I get a fuller appreciation for shapes, designs, colours, lights and darks. The process enriches my life.
Paulie Haines was born in Portland, Oregon. She received a B.A. in graphic design before immigrating to Canada. Having “interviewed” several different towns in BC, she moved to the Bulkley Valley in 1974. She now resides in Telkwa. She is a self-taught stained-glass artist, a glass-bead maker, and a painter. She formerly organized a life-drawing workshop in Telkwa that lasted many years. She has public stained-glass pieces in the Telkwa Museum, the Anglican chapel in Quick, and the Old Church in Smithers, and a tooth-fairy mural in a local dentist’s office. What sets her apart is her joie de vivre, as shown by her use of flowing lines, vibrant colours, and diversity. For a few months she might be only making glass beads and for the next few months, only painting in oils. She likes conveying movement and happiness. Paulie is inspired by old and rusty things, winged things, the human form and just about anything else that catches her eye.
"Circadian: Pushing off the Edge"
This is the name of my newest collection of abstract mixed media works. In this work I am exploring what happens when I let go of what I perceive as “what is and isn't safe”. I'm allowing myself to experience, the freedom and the fear, that comes from not knowing what will happen next. I am pushing off the edge of the canvas as I push myself off the edge of my own personal, questionable truths. The theme of pushing off the edge as well as the textures and palate of this new work tends to lead oneself into the world of subconscious; a place in the outer realm of our consciousness. A place of dreams, visions and awe.
As the lines go in Rilke's Book of Hours: Love Poems to God:
"This is what the things can teach us: to fall, patiently to trust our heaviness. Even a bird has to do that before he can fly."
Linda Stringfellow is a long-time resident of the area. Since 1998 she has shown her artwork in numerous exhibitions throughout the province, particularly in the Pacific Northwest, either in small groups, large groups or solo shows. Her work is most often done in acrylic paint; however, she is alway exploring with new and interesting art mediums such as fabric, mosaic and paper. Linda is a children's and adults' art instructor and workshop facilitator, as well as a devoted supporter of the arts. She is excited to be exhibiting in this show along with long-time friends Dorothy and Paulie, two women who also see the value in the creative process.