Tanya Clark – A World of Art

As Shavasana Gallery’s first show of the season, “Tanya Clark – A World of Art”, ( May 7 – June 4) is not proceeding due to the pandemic, I’ve decided to do a little write up of Tanya’s fabulous art for you so you may, at least, have an idea of what was in store for you -sans canapés – had we been able to put together an Art Opening and month-long show for her.

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A picture of Tanya standing in front of         “Kelp #3” (sold) in her Gallery in Anguilla

Tanya has had an extremely interesting and well-travelled life, which is reflected in the diversity of media & styles that she employs in her artistic expression… “Tanya is a formally trained Canadian artist who studied painting and printmaking at Emily Carr College of Art in Vancouver, before moving to Tokyo in 1985 to study the art of woodblock printmaking with world renowned artist Toshi Yoshida.” Tanya immersed herself in the Shin-hanga style of printmaking which gave her an “appreciation for the Japanese aesthetic with its subdued and subtle approach to colour.  In 1991, her work was awarded ‘Gold for a New Member’ at the Nihonhangakai, the largest international juried competition for woodblock prints.”…the first non-Japanese woman to do so!

“Morning Alms/Thai Quartet” – 11 x 22 Woodblock on Handmade Mulberry Paper

After five years in Japan, she relocated to Phuket, Thailand where she was “seduced once more by a completely different palette. The bold, saturated colours of the Andaman Sea and the visual explosion of tropical flora, both above and below the water, inspired a different direction in her work.” Here Tanya turned her attention to vibrant oil colours and expressive brush strokes  on canvas – a departure from the subtle colours of her woodblock training.

“Bed of Anemones” – 22 x 32 Oil (Sold)

In 1994 Tanya moved to the small island of Anguilla in the Caribbean where she “continued to explore the vibrant tropical elements of water, cloud, mountain and reef” She eventually opened “Phoenix Gallery” where she was able to exhibit her wonderful art and provide much-needed framing for island residents. In 2015 she spent time in southern Africa which inspired “a new collection of drawings and paintings featuring the inhabitants of Namibia and Botswana.”

“52 Degrees Celsius in the Shade” – 9 x 19 Charcoal on Paper (Sold)

Unfortunately, Tanya had to leave Anguilla in 2017 when Hurricane Irma (the strongest on record) destroyed her business and her gentle Caribbean island existence.  The Caribbean’s loss was Mayne Island’s gain as she chose to relocate back to her native British Columbia, and settle on another small island (Mayne) for a time, painting and drawing and providing framing services. She now resides in Victoria, preparing for new artistic inspiration and outlets for her creativity. 

“Moonrise” – 22 x 34 Fabric, Beads, Coral, Paint on Panel

Although I’m disappointed that I can’t bring you her lovely work in person, I hope that you can take some time and visit her website to get a better understanding of just how significant and grand her work truly is: https://www.tanyaclarkart.com/

“Autumn Crocus” – 16 x 28 Oil on Linen….From her website, “Employing a maturing repertoire of media and technique, she hopes to create work which will inspire an emotional connection to the majesty and mystery of an ever changing world.” 

If all progresses as we hope, the Coronavirus will be defeated soon and life can return to normal. Tanya and I have discussed mounting her art show next year when social gatherings are back in vogue  – fingers crossed! 🙂

(the Featured Image to this article is called “Veil of Tears” – 20 x 45 Oil on Linen…and is available for purchase)

Goodbye Astrid! We will Miss You!

Our very own, prolific, dependable, delicious, hard-working, generous, and big-hearted Astrid Bellem will be moving to Ontario on or about April 24th, and will be leaving a very large void in the bellies and hearts of all Mayne Islanders who have come to know her and rely on her stellar abilities in the kitchen.

As Joni Mitchell said, “You don’t know what you’ve got til it’s gone”, and I’m afraid there will be very many residents, weekenders, part-timers, and tourists alike who will bemoan Astrid’s absence from the food scene on our hungry little island. “Where’s Astrid?” will be a question raised on so many lips longing for the pleasure of her loving creations, and at so many events where she has become a stalwart & reliable provider of appies and baked goods for the masses.

Astrid’s long-time presence at the Saturday Farmer’s Market might be her most well-known public face as a go-to stall for a never-ending array of yummy baked goods – cookies, tarts, squares, cakes to name a few as well as some delicious savoury items such as her ever-popular Jamaican Patty, which even Chris Bennett (our resident Jamaican) said was, “pretty damn good, man”.

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But what many Islanders may not be aware of is Astrid’s foodie presence at so many essential functions and fundraisers. She has provided food, through her home-based business – Astrid’s Kitchen –  for the M.I. Conservancy, M.I Little Theatre, the Ag Society, the M.I. Art Society, art openings at Shavasana Gallery, the Food Bank, Farmgate Store, she has also made countless at-home meals for clients & friends, and, almost single-handedly helped raise $24,000 for St.John Point with a series of fundraising dinners held at Tim Hurley’s home…all in her humble manner.

If you haven’t had the pleasure of participating in any of her irresistible food offerings at the above events, you may have encountered her smiling face at the many Mayne Island businesses which employed her over the years: The Gas Station, the Post Office, the Springwater, the Mayne Inn and the Farmgate Store. Like most worker bees on Mayne Island, Astrid has worn many hats. What you might be surprised to learn, is that before coming to Mayne Island she had worked for many years as a Reproductive Endocrinologist – I’ll let you look that up 🙂

For me personally, Astrid’s parting will hurt doubly, as I am going to miss her good friendship (and her irrepressible border collie JC!), and her services as the provider of wonderful cookies, squares and other baked items, and fabulous catered foods for Art Openings at Shavasana Gallery & Café. Her and I have had this friendship & business relationship since early 2014 when both of us were still relatively new to the island and I have come to rely on her culinary skills, and dependability. Each week, as I was closing down my shop and doing inventory, I would text her my order for the following week, and they would magically be waiting for me in the “secret place” when I arrived to open up. She never missed an order – not once – and often I would be the delighted recipient of her “samples or extras”…sigh…these will be big shoes to fill.

I’ll miss you Astrid! Wishing you safe travels as you head across Canada to your new home in Douglas, Ontario! With Love –XOXO

 

 

Shavasana Gallery & Café Update

I thought it was time to do a little “shout out” to friends of Shavasana Gallery & Café and anyone else who follows my website or Facebook link to let you all know what’s happening with our 2020 season, which was scheduled to begin in early May.

Wow…what a difference a few short weeks and months can make in all of our lives. First, I just want to send all of you some good wishes for personal well-being during this unprecedented time. The pandemic has been creeping up on us but now it has arrived and I’m sure that you and your loved ones, like me and mine, are doing their best to follow these new strict rules for self-isolation and social distancing that will – hopefully – keep us all safe.

A few photos from previous art shows we’ve had at the Gallery – from our non-socially distant recent past 🙂

With regards to Shavasana Gallery & Café, I am following Federal & Provincial guidelines as long as they remain in place, and am respecting the requests of full-time residents of Mayne Island that anyone with a second home – like myself – remain in place until this crisis has passed. With all of this being said – I really do not have a clear picture of when I will, safely, be able to re-open. As of this writing (April 4), May is looking more and more unlikely so I’m hoping for a June opening…if conditions allow 🙂

I’m missing Mayne and all the terrific friends I’ve made there over the last 7 years! I look forward to this storm blowing over so we can all return to some semblance of normalcy, and sit together over a cup of coffee, surrounded by beautiful & clever art. Til then…here are a few more photos from happier times. 🙂

Weekly jam sessions, Saturday meditation group and various events and visits…

I miss you all!

Closed for the Season – October 6 to May 2020

Earlier this year I created a Blog called “The Show Between Shows” …just a little coverage of the art that I put up whenever I’m not hosting other Island or regional artists. This is my “Closed for the Season” sign so I’ve chosen to repost it now – Cheers! George

After 6 years in business, Shavasana Gallery & Café has evolved into a two-season cycle –  the “Open” season from May through October, and the “Closed” season throughout the winter months into early Spring. The Open season consists of scheduled Art Shows of local and regional artists, with art hangings & take downs and Opening Receptions. It’s the time of advertising, invitations, catering decisions and – hopefully – sales. The closed season arrived several winters ago when I realized that business was just too slow to remain open, and that my time would be better spent either travelling or working on my creative process. Luckily, when the last scheduled art show has packed up and gone home, I have enough art squirrelled away at Shavasana to completely fill my walls with familiar pieces. This is the “Show Between Shows”…

As this Show Between Shows is now up for 5 to 6 months of the year I thought it would be a good idea to keep a record of it and acknowledge some of the artists who are part of this collection. All of the pieces are artworks I have bought, inherited or created over the years. Many are NFS but some are for sale as I do  – on occasion – open up to the public (as I am right now – June 1) The video gives a nice walkthrough and commentary on most of the pieces & artists so I encourage you to have a look…if you are so inclined.

George Bathgate – November, 2019

*ps. the Featured Photo is a picture of “Kabul 1973″…a painting I did many years ago upon my return from Afghanistan & the far east. I hope to elaborate on this with a little article in http://www.clayandbone.com …soon

Closing for the Season – October 6th!

Hard to believe that summer is behind us already! I’m writing this on the morning of September 27 – just preparing to wind down Shavasana Gallery & Café for the slower Fall & Winter months. We’ve had a very busy open season (which currently extends from May through October) with 4 great Art Shows exhibiting the creative talents of 6 local artists, (Deborah Strong, Famous Empty Sky & Angie Carson, Pam Carr, and Linda Dzus & Nicole Rittemann) and a steady stream of wonderful visitors. I love my job!

But, before we close for the season I wanted to remind islanders that Shavasana also carries a fabulous selection of crafts made by locals and off-islanders alike – incredibly talented artists in their own right who remain largely unheralded throughout the year. Although it may be a little early to start thinking of Christmas, the next two weekends will be your last chance to obtain arts & crafts at the Gallery before we close on October 6th.

We have beautiful jewellery & pendants from jewellers such as Cheryl Funk, Bill Maylone, Nekita Garcia, Hayley Rose Kershaw (Australia) & Laura Meza (Mexico)

 

 

Hand-Woven Rugs (Doreen Bennett) and gorgeous quilts (Genise Gill…now reduced from $150 to $95!)

 

Icons, artifacts, curios & carvings from India, Africa & the Northwest Territories (Innu)

 

 

From elegant & zen-like Suiseki rock displays (Bill Maylone) to functional hand-made dryer balls (Pam Carr)

 

And a great selection of cards (Famous Empty Sky, Deborah Strong, Toby Snelgrove, Stephan Cropper, Linda Dzus & Judie Hancock), photographic prints (Toby Snelgrove, Deborah Strong & Stephen Cropper) and sketches (Leonard Winchester)

We are also having a little Final Weekend closing celebration on Saturday October 5th between 3 and 5. There will be free coffee & yummy cake made by Famous Empty Sky, who will also be in attendance. Artist Angie Carson will also likely be here to participate in the fun – hope to see you there!

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