Bella Coola artist Ida Eriksen’s abstract impressionist landscapes will be on display in the Station House Gallery in Williams Lake starting Feb. 10 for her solo show titled West Coast Light.
Trying to evoke a feeling of what it’s like on the west coast, Eriksen’s abstract impressionist landscapes express her sense of the beauty, mystery, solitude and deep history of remote coastal B.C.
“It’s overwhelmed me at times, I just have to stand there and look at it and breathe,” said Eriksen of the impact coastal landscapes can have on her.
Eriksen, has spent her life near the ocean. She grew up in the tiny remote community of Namu, which is located about 95 km southwest of Bella Coola along the coast. Her family moved to Canada from Denmark in 1952, directly to Namu, then left the community after her father died in 1960. She then spent most of her adult life in the Lower Mainland and on Vancouver Island, with over 30 years based in Victoria.
The self-described 75-years-young artist followed in her father’s footsteps by pursuing art.
“I always did art, right from the word go,” she explained.
“At some point in my life, you know I had a bit of an epiphany,” she explained about her choice to focus on art.
She went to school and got a degree in visual art and decided she was just going to do things that made her happy.
“Because life’s too short not to be happy,” said Eriksen, recalling the many art shows she was a part of in Vancouver and Victoria.
After retiring, Eriksen moved to Bella Coola, a place she sought out as a way to return “home” to a small west coast community, despite not being able to return to her childhood home in Namu, now a ghost town.
Eriksen has lived in Bella Coola since 2013, after finding a solid house which needed work, “a canvas to work on,” just how she likes it she said.
The show will be on display until March 25.
The Station House Gallery is free to visit, and is open Tuesday to Saturday 10:30 a.m. to 5:30 p.m.
Do you have a comment about this story? email:
Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.