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A Brush with Life - Issue #89 Soft Belly of the West Coast

A Brush with Life - Issue #89 Soft Belly of the West Coast
By Terrill Welch Gallery • Issue #89 • View online
Early mornings are filled with mist in the half-light of sunrises or rolling seas pressed against pewter grey skies. Golden hour lengthens our stride beneath curving arbutus, tall fir and cedar trees as we listen to the echoing calls of a raven winging its way through their branches. This is the soft belly of the West Coast that captures the attention of Mayne Island landscape painters Jody Waldie, Glenda King, Jennifer Peers and Terrill Welch. Sometimes it is a sunrise, or a favourite beach or the peeling bark of the Arbutus. Sometimes it is the golden hour at the end of a day or a grand vista from a lookout. Whatever the subject that is whispering to these painters’ brushes, you will be glad you settled in for a while and enjoyed the view or puzzled over a red line representing the stresses that are changing our landscapes. 
Please join us in exploring our new…
Soft Belly of the West Coast | Winter Group Show

The smallest painting is 6 x 6 inches and the largest is 36 x 72 inches. Some will have show frames and others are presented with 1.5 inch painted edges. Yet, regardless of differences, each painting leaves the viewer with the feeling that this is the West Coast of British Columbia in Canada. This winter show in the gallery’s Arbutus Room will be up from Friday,  October 8, 2021 to Saturday, April 2, 2022. A few of the paintings may change as work finds homes or new work becomes available. 
Let’s take a short one minute video introduction to gain a feel for the work…
Soft Belly of the West Coast | Winter Group Show
And now, here is the link to the online gallery viewing for you…
Soft Belly of the West Coast | Winter Group Show | Artsy
We will highlight a few paintings for you here..
Jody Waldie | Arbutus (2021) | Available for Sale | Artsy
Jennifer Peers | Last Chair at the Outlook (2021) | Available for Sale | Artsy
Glenda King | Mt. Baker again (2021) | Available for Sale | Artsy
And this last one which is a work from this spring…
Terrill Welch | Morning Gifts at Saint John Point (2021) | Available for Sale | Artsy
In future issues, we will explore more of these paintings. However, this gives you a good summary overview of the show as a starting point.
Forest Floor l Annerose Georgeson
This coming Monday, October 18th, the gallery is also featuring a new online exclusive solo show with Annerose Georgeson that will be up until March 14, 2022.
Deep in the Canadian woods, Annerose Georgeson keeps her gaze low. Her careful observations bring us landscapes of the forest floor.
In this solo show of seven paintings by Annerose Georgeson, we are  mesmerized by her keen observations of the forest floor near her home deep in north central British Columbia, Canada. These paintings offer a tactile sensation on the ends of our fingertips or the rub of a shrub up against our pant leg. The artworks might seem fragrant and a viewer possibly wrinkles their nose slightly in memory of a familiar pungent forest somewhere. Or another painting could have us wanting to pull up our collar as if the cool winter day has crept off her brushstrokes and chilled the room.
Forest Floor l Annerose Georgeson | Artsy
Annerose Georgeson’s artist statement for the FOREST FLOOR series:
I sit out on the beetle killed pine stumps near our house and draw what is on the ground right by my feet. Almost every day in the last two years, in good weather, I mapped all the little bits, such as spruce needles, tiny sticks and cones, in my sketchbook.
Annerose Georgeson | Forest floor 4 (2019) | Available for Sale | Artsy
Early in the spring, all the bits are flattened by the snow and laid out like a carpet and a top down view works well. Later, as the plants grow, I shift my viewpoint slightly to a low side view.
Annerose Georgeson | Groundwork (2019) | Available for Sale | Artsy
These sketchbook drawings of the ground are the source material for the Forest Floor series of paintings. They are about the chaotic jumble and messy tangle that is the bush. I wrote in my sketchbook, “so much chaos and yet out in the middle of it new growth, new life, beauty”.
Annerose Georgeson | Bunchberry pattern (2019) | Available for Sale | Artsy
We hope you enjoy these works by Annerose Georgeson. We have shown her work before but in case you don’t remember, Annerose Georgeson is a visual artist living near Vanderhoof. She has shown her artwork in many solo exhibitions in public galleries in British Columbia and Alberta, Canada. 
Georgeson has a BFA in Visual Arts from the University of Victoria and was the artist in residence at College of New Caledonia - Nechako for five years. She was the curator of Red and Blue Beetle Art, a regional touring exhibition about the impact of the mountain pine beetle. She has taught art to adults and children for many years and facilitates many community arts projects.
New Work Yet-To-Be Released
I likely won’t get these released until the new year when I open the next solo exhibition in the gallery’s Garden Room. However, you are welcome to inquire if you see something that you would like to add to your art collection.
Fog Lifting at the Springwater Lodge” by Terrill Welch 11 x 14 inch walnut oil on linen board.
“Fog Lifting at the Springwater Lodge” by Terrill Welch
“Fog Lifting at the Springwater Lodge” by Terrill Welch
Artist notes: The heavy November morning fog in Active Pass starts to lift, revealing and concealing with equal amounts of effectiveness. 
The finished painting conceals its red ground start…
My focus for this painting is inspired by the work of Lois Dodd as I think about significant shapes, the use of negative space and also deciding what is the primary line in the landscape and then building the composition out from there.
Once I considered these aspect, I simply picked up my brush and painted while briefly connecting back to these ideas when I frequently stood back from the work. 
It is not a large painting but when we give it some distance, it seems to hold its own nicely.
The next work “East Point Morning Saturna Island” by Terrill Welch, 11 x 14 inch walnut oil on gessobord is about a rather magical place.
“East Point Morning Saturna Island”  by Terrill Welch
“East Point Morning Saturna Island” by Terrill Welch
Artist notes: Standing defiantly alone, whipped by wind and rain and then bleached in the Southern Gulf Island’s summer sun, this small red and white building breaks the horizon with purpose.
 In one of Canada’s National Park Reserves sits the Fog Alarm Building at East Point on Saturna Island. Built in 1938 as part of the East Point Light Station, the Fog Alarm Building housed the engine to blow the fog horn. This tiny white-and-red building has been restored and now holds a museum run by community volunteers in the summer. In 2013, the Fog Alarm Building was designated under the Heritage Lighthouse Protection Act. 
I painted this building as a quote to east coast U.S. landscape painter Maureen Gallace. It is a building I am sure, if she had the chance, she would take under her minimalist, often long soft-edged rounded brushstrokes.
Because of my need for some precise measurements in order to get this composition to work, it is one of the rare times I start with a pencil and ruler rather than just a few measures for the horizon line and some quick brushstrokes to guide me. 
Once started, this measured approach seems to spill over into the slower-than-usual markings on the surface. There is a zen-like sensation about painting in this manner. 
Light is no longer fleeting and holds the colours of the morning in fluid patterns that eventually shape the composition. In the end, there is a spaciousness to the painting that is befitting of the subject. 
More about Lois Dodd and Maureen Gallace
These two landscape painters are my contemporaries. Lois Dodd is still painting at 93 years old and has several decades on me. Maureen Gallace is two years young. Both are on the East Coast of the United States with strong ties to the New York City art scene. That aside, I feel that each, in different ways, have something to add to our understanding of contemporary landscape painting as art collectors and painters.
Lois Dodd is featured in many interviews on YouTube but this shorter exchange below is my favourite (and don’t let the slow beginning as she is painting the green foliage keep you from watching it to the end of the four minutes)….
Lois Dodd: Maine Master
The second landscape painter, Maureen Gallace, is a little harder to research directly about her painting practice.
Born in 1960 in Stamford, CT, she received her BFA from the University of Hartford in 1981 and went on to study under David Salle at Rutgers University, where she received her MFA in 1983. Gallace’s work has steadily grown in critical acclaim since the 1990s. She has been the subject of solo exhibitions at Overduin and Kite in Los Angeles, 303 Gallery, and MoMA PS1 in New York. Her works are held in the collections of the Dallas Museum of Art, the Chianti Foundation in Marfa, and the Art Institute of Chicago. The artist lives and works in New York, NY.
“Our shared experience as people having passed through places that might resemble or feel like my paintings—whether real or imagined, fact or fiction—comes into play,” the artist said of her work. “But for my part, although I do have a narrative like anyone else, I focus only on my ability to make the paintings work as paintings.”
~ Maureen Gallace, Art Net. 
A good place to view at her work in detail online is her artist profile for the 303 Gallery and you will see why when I decided to paint the Fog Alarm Building, I thought of her work. Or possibly, it is the reverse. When I saw her work, I thought about the Fog Alarm Building? Either way, I think you will enjoy a browse of her paintings.
Maureen Gallace - - GALLERY EXHIBITIONS - 303 Gallery
Until Next Time
As I look back over this latest issue, I am reminded of the fact that art is not always about something that we like but rather our questioning is more astutely placed by asking - does the art have something to say? When I look at the landscape paintings by the various artists in this issue, my answer to that question is a resounding “YES!” What about for you? What might your answer be?
I promised you that I was going to take you in an adventure this fall and winter as I dive deep into my painting practice and studies. And here we are, up to our elbows in brushes and paints and colours resolutely placed on canvases and boards. I hope you are enjoying the studio-side attractions so far. Thank you as always for being my constant art lover companions!
All the best until next time!
Terrill 👩‍🎨🎨❤️
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Terrill Welch Gallery

A Brush with Life is the good bits! Insider stories, discoveries, snippets, opinions, new works and shows for fans and art collectors of Terrill Welch Gallery paintings. Published every 2nd Friday.

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Terrill Welch Gallery, 428 Luff Rd., Mayne Island, B.C., Canada