The diorama of two taxidermied grouse against a painted background is one of the many artifacts presented in the Sooke Region Museum’s exhibit The Art that Frames Us. (Contributed - Sooke Region Museum)

The diorama of two taxidermied grouse against a painted background is one of the many artifacts presented in the Sooke Region Museum’s exhibit The Art that Frames Us. (Contributed - Sooke Region Museum)

New museum exhibit examines history of Sooke art

The Art that Frames Us premieres in June

Emma Wilton | Contributed

A new exhibit called The Art that Frames Us will debut this summer, focusing on art history in the Sooke Region. This will be the Sooke Region Museum’s first summer exhibit in the upstairs gallery since 2020.

The exhibit is expected to open at the end of June and run through the fall.

The exhibit showcases past and present artists and organizations contributing to the art scene locally. A few names may come to mind, such as the Sooke Philharmonic Orchestra and the Sooke Writers Collective. We will examine various art forms, including visual arts, performing arts and literary arts. However, there is much more to learn about the arts than just those three.

The exhibit will include paintings as well as musical instruments and poetry. Several of the paintings will be by well-known artists that have never been displayed. A Sooke art teacher, Bea Barnet, is featured among the artists from the 1960s and 1970s and P.W. Taylor, whose primary medium was watercolour.

The diorama of two taxidermied grouse against a painted background may be interesting to some. Sam Whittaker taxidermized the grouse in the late 1800s or early 1900s. Gladys Sharpnel painted the backdrop.

In the 1950s, the Bryant Family hung this piece of art in their home. I think this piece fits Sooke; at first glance, it presents as outdoorsy and eccentric, but upon closer review, you see the fine detail and artistic endeavours behind it, much like you do when you get to know Sooke.

I also want to thank all the organizations that have contributed to this exhibit so far; it would not be without your help.

So, if you find yourself in Sooke this summer and want to learn about the history of art, stop by the Sooke Region Museum for the Art that Frames Us.

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Emma Wilton is the collections and exhibits manager of the Sooke Region Museum. Email: musasst@sookeregionmuseum.com.



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