Meet Tumbler Ridge’s Artist-in-Residence

Love – that’s what brought this year’s Artist-in-Residence Peace Liard to the region, personally and professionally.

Ontario artist Alex Landon Richardson was grateful to receive this year’s Regional Arts Council residency and is busy creating in the basement of the Tumbler Ridge Visitor Center after Open skythe council’s 40th juried show.

“Being a newcomer to the area, who already loves nature, it really helped me to understand the place I moved to, through all the art that surrounds me here,” she said. declared. “I can look at the local art in the Peace region and realize that’s what Lake Atlin is like, that’s what the lifestyle of a cattle rancher is like, and I have an idea of ​​the region. It’s a way to get to know the area, while I’m here making art.

Richardson creates surreal yet colorful landscapes with oil paints, her work almost always drawn from nature and mixing reference photos taken from places she has been.

His last piece, inscribed for Open skyused imagery of Ontario’s Stony Lake as a backdrop, but with the added familiar glow of the Northern Lights, so often seen dancing across the skies of peace. light danceher next exhibition, set to debut in October at the Dawson Creek Art Gallery, will explore this inspiration further.

“I’ve only been inspired by the Northern Lights since I arrived here, and I’ve been lucky enough to see them in real life,” she said. “I created this whole image by mixing photos, and I kind of created my own scene of the northern lights…they’re getting lights [in Ontario] but not as bright as here.

Alex Landon Richardson paints a scene inspired by the Chetwynd night sky as part of his artist residency Peace Liard. Tom Summer

Richardson moved to the area last August after getting married, leaving the small town of Erin, Ont., just northwest of Toronto. Richardson says the slower pace and abundance of wilderness here suits him, adding Tumbler Ridge ideal for an artist’s residence, and Chetwynd an ideal home.

“I’m used to this calmer pace,” she said. “I drive every day, and that’s one of the coolest things about this residency. In one day I saw two moose, a black bear, two grizzlies, fourteen elk and a whole field of baby deer all in one ride.

Teaching is another passion for Richardson, who holds an MFA from the University of London and a BA from Western University. She taught art for four years in North Bay, Ontario, in addition to running her own gallery.

“It’s great to work with students, they’re always happy to be there,” she says.

She has also had the opportunity to paint all over the world, visiting exotic places like Australia and South Africa to participate in several painting retreats. They operate much like residence halls, Richardson says, but in these cases she paid to be there. It’s rarer to have the opportunity to be paid to be painted, and I was pleasantly surprised to be chosen as the recipient this year.

“I’m really grateful for this opportunity, it’s amazing,” she said.

Tom Summer, Alaska Highway News, Local Journalism Initiative.

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