A study in striking colours and thoughtful imagery dominates the Station House’s Main Gallery this month courtesy of the show Everything is Shining.
A collection of impressionist acrylic paintings, Everything is Shining is rife with metaphors and symbolism with each piece giving the beholders pause. Heavy use of blues and oranges throughout the paintings makes for a pleasing palette that gives the main gallery a gentle ambiance.
All of these paintings are the works of the soft-spoken Jim Savage, a longtime resident of Quesnel who worked primarily in regional economic development prior to getting back into art in recent years. Savage said that he, like many artists, was very into art when he was younger but had to set it aside as other things in life took over. He came back to art in 2012 with his first art show and found it tremendously rewarding and has been actively pursuing it ever since.
“The act of doing (art) is so fun, it can be tremendously frustrating as well but once you kind of let go of your ego as best you can and relax, it’s just intensely pleasurable,” Savage said. “Once you get going, it’s really quite wonderful.”
For this show, Savage primarily worked in acrylics for their forgiving nature, although he has also done work with oil paints in the past, which he loves, as well as pastel and charcoal works.
Everything is Shining is not an example of abstract art, Savage said but is instead examples of representative art. Rather than represent truths or subjects with exaggerated colours and shapes, Savage instead seeks to portray the subjects and the world “more or less how we see it.”
One theme and overarching message Savage really wanted to communicate with this show was the importance of human connection to nature and awareness about the “climate crisis” and other ecological crises humanity faces today.
While these crises may seem unsurmountable, Savage said his work is his way of getting a foothold into the discussion and making people think more about how they interact with nature.
“In the show, there are straight-up celebrations of the beauty of nature as well as intimations of coming calamity,” Savage said.
When asked about his use of saturated colours, Savage said he’s not afraid to use them as winter in the Cariboo is long and he enjoys using these colours that vibrate within people’s brains. The title of the show, Everything is Shining, is directly influenced by this contrast between bright colours and dark colours along with an inherent deeper spiritual meaning.
Savage hopes the people of the lakecity take the opportunity to come see his show at the Station House that provides a venue for him and so many other artists and creative individuals. He thinks it would be a real loss if the gallery wasn’t here providing these services.
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“I hope that (the show) will inspire people that are really thinking about doing some type of creative pursuit, who may be a little bit older and might be thinking it’s too late. I hope people find some inspiration in that from a guy who is 60,” Savage mused with a soft chuckle. “I’m just getting started.”