Lisa Samphire’s Goosebeck Vase (Teals), a 22.5-inch tall piece, is part of her Carnival Series on display at the Avenue Gallery in Oak Bay. (Lisa Samphire Image)

Lisa Samphire’s Goosebeck Vase (Teals), a 22.5-inch tall piece, is part of her Carnival Series on display at the Avenue Gallery in Oak Bay. (Lisa Samphire Image)

At The Galleries: March exhibitions come to life

A look at what’s on display this month at Greater Victoria art galleries

West End Gallery downtown is showing the impressionist touch of artist Alain Bedard.

The lively colours and landscapes of Bedard’s What I Live exhibition is running March 6 to 18.

“Each painting that I paint, I have lived it and represents a place where I stopped to take the time to live and admire what surrounds me … In this exhibition, you will find sometimes the countryside, sometimes the small villages or the big cities which all had different things to say, to see and to do. My subjects are meant to be a message of hope and freedom,” Bedard said.

The Avenue Gallery in Oak Bay introduces Claire Huang, describing her as “a tribute to the places that evoke a moment of contemplation.”

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Huang enjoys spaces that have mystery and atmosphere and explores the duality of a conscious world filtered through ambiguity and clarity. Her work has been shown at the province’s Ministry of Tourism, Sports and Arts’ Vancouver office and the Canadian Pavilion of the 2010 World Expo in Shanghai, China.

“I don’t think I shall ever forget the moment that I learned the meaning of the word grandeur, I almost felt a bit dizzy while standing in the middle of this grandiose hall,” Huang said.

In addition to Huang’s paintings, Avenue Gallery is showing a collection of blown glass by Lisa Samphire. She calls it the Carnival Series.

“The Carnival Series is the celebration and culmination of 35 years of training in glass and knowledge of the material. They are the result of a labour-intensive process that requires a lot of technique,” Samphire said.

Working with a series gives her extra time and space to play with the form, colour and pattern.

“I love how the linear pattern informs the shape of the pieces and defines its limits,” Samphire said.

Oak Bay’s Winchester Gallery is showing Backroads and Beyond, an exhibition by Michelle Austen, until March 17.

The Calgary artist’s collection of Plein-air paintings is inspired by Austen’s travels on the backroads of British Columbia and Alberta.

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“Working en Plein air allows Austen to capture the essence of the Canadian landscapes she depicts in her paintings,” said Anahita Ranjbar.

Over the course of her career, Austen’s works have been featured in many solo exhibitions including Ranchmen’s Club Annual Emerging Artist Event, Calgary Stampede Annual Western Showcase, and Leighton Art Centre.

“This exhibition of paintings is a result of several plein air painting trips and hikes that I experienced over a few years in Alberta and British Columbia, Canada. The paintings represent moments in time and place that inspired me to capture the beauty and character of particularly memorable locations,” Austen said.

Madrona Gallery downtown is hosting Historic and Post-War Canadian Art from March 13 to 27.

The annual exhibition includes members of the Group of Seven, E.J. Hughes, Jean-Paul Riopelle, Takao Tanabe, Gordon Smith, W.J. Phillips, Molly Lamb Bobak, and many others.

“This is arguably our biggest exhibition of the year where we have the privilege of offering work from some of the best names in Canadian art. The quality of work in this year’s exhibition is incredible, and so for those with an interest in historic Canadian art, this is an exhibition not to be missed,” said Madrona’s Brittany Scarfe.

March is the final month for the Legacy Art Gallery Downtown’s ongoing series Life Stories. The exhibition started in December and closes on April 3. The series uses a collection of artists’ work that capture the various phases of life, beginnings, childhood, coming of age, maturity, later life, and more.

The Gage Gallery on Oak Bay Avenue is featuring Gabriela Hirt’s The Indelible Mark, Legacy of a German Upbringing, March 9 to 18. Hirt’s new painting collection explores belonging and exclusion as well as the relationship between German guilt and de-colonial healing in her adopted home in Canada.

reporter@oakbaynews.com

 

The Grand Chamber by Claire Huang, an acrylic and oil on canvas, is exhibiting at the Avenue Gallery in Oak Bay this month. (Image by Claire Huang)

The Grand Chamber by Claire Huang, an acrylic and oil on canvas, is exhibiting at the Avenue Gallery in Oak Bay this month. (Image by Claire Huang)