Curious perceptions, landmarks and whimsy: Station House Gallery summer exhibit

The summer exhibit in the Station House Gallery features works by members of the Cariboo Arts Society, which was formed 75 years ago. In the forefront is Anne Brown’s Whimsical Garden, to the left is Dwayne Davis’s Carr in the Cariboo and on the right is Jean Wellburn’s (Monica Lamb-Yorski photo)
Stained Glass Orchid by Sandra Stokes was created using water colours and coloured pencils. (Monica Lamb-Yorski photo - Williams Lake Tribune)
Wild in the Cariboo by Linda Bachman. (Monica Lamb-Yorski photo - Williams Lake Tribune)
“Shelter in Place” is a result of the spring quarantine of 2020, writes Gladys Wheatley in her description of one of three paintings she has in the show. (Monica Lamb-Yorski photo - Williams Lake Tribune)
Oolichan and Eelgrass by Michael Bruce done in acrylics. (Monica Lamb-Yorski photo - Williams Lake Tribune)
The Universe, Within and Without, by Georgia Lesley done in acrylics. (Monica Lamb-Yorski photo - Williams Lake Tribune)
Some archival material from the Cariboo Art Society including a $1 receipt for membership fees from Vivien Cowan, who helped form the society. (Monica Lamb-Yorski photo - Williams Lake Tribune)

Art work by nine members of the Cariboo Art Society (CAS) is featured in the Station House Gallery and Gift Shop’s summer exhibit.

From an acrylic painting of Oolichan and Eelgrass by newer member Michael Bruce to some mixed media flowers created out of vinyl records by Anne Brown, the show reflects the artists’ individual response to the theme — curious perceptions, landmarks and whimsy.

“It helps to have a theme,” said CAS vice-president Linda Bachman, who organized the show. “When you have a theme it gives you a start.”

An acrylic painting by Gladys Wheatley, Shelter in Place, was a result of the spring quarantine of 2020.

“The artwork is a seemingly cozy summer scene but danger lurks just out of sight,” she wrote in her description of the piece.

Georgia Lesley’s The Universe, Within and Without boasts a vibrant, colourful starry night, with an adult and child looking up from the snow-covered ground.

It is a magical scene.

In one of Bachman’s acrylic paintings, Wild in the Cariboo, there are horses set against the landscape but there are also some Indigenous forms painted in behind the trees in front of a small hillside. Even the shadows beneath two of the horses look like pictographs.

Mural artist Dwayne Davis has painted a large piece depicting artist Emily Carr on horseback during a visit to the Cariboo, based on an historical photograph taken around 1909.

Sandra Stokes created a piece titled Stained Glass Orchid out of watercolours and coloured pens, while Jean Wellburn shares one of her iconic Chilcotin scenes called Alms.

These are only some of the many pieces to created by the artists for the exhibit.

Station House executive director Diane Toop is enjoying hosting the CAS show.

Read more: Station House building turns 100 this year

“I think it is important to show the community how worthwhile this art society is and how important it is to maintain the integrity of the intent of the initial founders — Vivien Cowan and A.Y. Jackson — to bring art to the community,” Toop said.

Toop included an archival piece for the description of the show which is a typed invitation from Cowan to members inviting them to submit art for the first exhibition of the CAS scheduled for Oct. 14 to 18, 1946.

During the past 39 years, the Station House has hosted many CAS exhibits, Toop said.

“I think it’s one of the best shows they’ve had. I’m happy with it,” she added.

“I think it’s important that emerging artists go and learn from people who have been making art longer with the CAS.”

Bachman said some of the members have been painting outside together at each other’s yards during the summer and working on a group project painting a garage door that belongs to member Dean Jeffries.

There are still a few panels left on the door for some of the other artists who haven’t painted any yet.

Next Saturday, Aug. 15, the painting session will take place at Bachman’s 150 Mile House home, where the 2017 wildfires came close to her property.

“It’s all beautiful flora now and wild flowers, less the trees, and it’s gorgeous,” Bachman said.

“I’m anxious to get the artists out here again so they can see how it is and paint or draw.”

Getting out to view the beautiful landscapes in the Cariboo region is something Bachman said she will never get tired of as an ‘ex-city slicker.’

She has lived in the area since 2016, after moving up from Squamish, and said she has so much more to see.

Having a group of artists helps keep each other motivated, she added.

“If we lose contact, we share stuff on Facebook and critique each other’s work. I’ve been doing that a lot with Gladys Wheatley. She is one of the best artists in the Cariboo here as far as I’m concerned. She is very creative.”

The society’s AGM is slated for Sept. 5 at the current society’s president Cat Prevette’s place in Rose Lake. Anyone wanting information about the AGM can contact Bachman at 250-296-4676.

Read more: Explore colour with the Cariboo Art Society through Abstracted Colour at Station House

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