Art by youth well received

The Station House Gallery is starting off its 30th anniversary exhibition year this month with a show reflecting hope for the future of the arts.

Jolene O’Connor with her painting of a tiger.

Jolene O’Connor with her painting of a tiger.

The Station House Gallery is starting off its 30th anniversary exhibition year this month with a show reflecting hope for the future of the arts.

For the first time in its 30-year history the gallery is featuring art work created by children and youth, both in the main and in the upper galleries, says manager Diane Toop.

While the future of the Station House Gallery hangs in the balance due to recent government funding cutbacks, judging by the steady stream of children and visitors attending the show’s opening Thursday evening, dedication to creating and exhibiting art remains strong in the lakecity.

A total of 59 pieces of art created by 26 children and youth fill the main gallery. The inventive, colourful and reflective pieces in the main gallery were submitted for the show through an open call the gallery issued last fall.

“The open call for submissions for the youth art has shown us and our visitors that our area has a wealth of talent in our young people,” Toop says.

“We were thrilled to have 26 young people submit 59 pieces to this show, much more than we hoped for. The parents and guardians fulfilled their end by ensuring that the pieces are presented properly, which is an important component of a quality exhibition.”

The upstairs gallery is filled with art work created by children and youth who participated in the Station House Gallery’s art classes held last summer with artist/teacher Kathryn Steen.

The work shown upstairs reflects some interesting lessons that Steen did with her students in watercolours, line drawing, collage, self-portraits, pastels, and other artistic techniques.

Jolene O’Connor, 18, is one of many young artists whose art work is hanging in the main gallery. Jolene has been involved in art ever since she can remember.

“I live, drink, eat and sleep art,” Jolene says.

She does all of her art work free hand and painted her tiger in the show in an hour, “start to finish.” She also has a multi-media painting/sculpture of a crow in the show, which includes crow feathers and wire.

Jolene plans to become a tattoo artist and is now practicing the craft on pigskin.

Jolene moved to Williams Lake from Kamloops last April and is finishing high school at GROW/Skyline.

She says it has taken time getting used to a smaller town. In Kamloops she hardly ever ran into people she knew. Here she sees familiar faces wherever she goes.

Toop says Kathryn Steen will be offering art classes at the gallery for children ages six to 12 during spring break, March 14 to 18.

“There has also been interest expressed in an adult/children’s art class,” Toop says.

“We hope to do it this summer when grandchildren from out of town are visiting; a great way to spend time together, learning and doing art together.

She says the gallery has also introduced after school art classes. For information call the gallery at 250-392-6113.