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The Quesnel Art Gallery exhibit "ART-It's in Our Nature" is open from February 2 to March 3, 2018.
We are immersed in nature at our wilderness Taharti home. This interwoven tapestry of person and place is the *impetus for many of my art works. British Columbia’s 2017 raging wildfires swept through our Taharti homestead and surrounding areas. The erratic and pervasive devastation is drawn across the land in the ashen traces of forest, fields, and six decade old snake fences that once delineated our wilderness ranch.
While hot spots still smoldered and flared into flames, I explored the blackened meadow, along a path of grizzly bear prints, mutely surveying the losses. My love of this place and its evolving entropy evoke memories of the past alongside questions for the present and future; ponderings both personal and global in scope.
I gathered remnants of Taharti’s snake fence and contemplated them in my art studio. With collected charcoal chunks I drew the angular fence patterns upon two boards. Photographs of the site are affixed amid collaged elements of scorched meadow grasses and willow leaves, fire-singed pine needles, white and black ash, red-earth, and charcoal-melded branches. Plaster, paint, glues, and varnish grip these Traces into a mixed-media segment of history which I submit for your consideration. Meanwhile, I return to the ever-evolving wilderness which is free, at least temporarily, of human-hewn boundaries. What might exist beyond the decimated constraints of the past?
*Impetus for Traces : artist’s photograph of burned Taharti snake fence line 2017