Dimension: 6 x 9″
Number of Pages: 256
Synopsis: The extreme west coast is often characterized as the most “out there” edge of Canada and has become known internationally for artists residing in the region and giving it their own particular flavor. Living Artfully: Reflections from the Far West Coast offers unique perspectives and insights to the interrelationship of creativity and geography through intimate portrayals about the lives of artists. Writers, painters, carvers, and performers reflect on the private spaces of the arts – inner worlds and natural environments – and the public spaces for exhibiting, performing and sharing. Artists delve into their life journeys, the struggles and challenges as well as the joys and rewards of pursuing expression out here. Forty-two emerging and established artists have contributed to this collection, including award-winning First Nations playwright and poet Janet Rogers; painter, writer, and arts advocate Robert Amos; internationally noted artists Avis Rasmussen and Mark Hobson; renowned author Susan Musgrave; award-winning film maker Velcrow Ripper; and from the academy, dancer and educator Celeste Snowber, professor emeritus Bill Zuk and many more voices that shape what it means to live artfully on the far west coast.
About the Contributors
ROBERT AMOS is a painter and art writer for the Victoria Times Colonist. He has published six books of his paintings, writing and photographs and Artists In Their Studios is the only book on the artists of southern Vancouver Island. His new book, Inside Chinatown was published by TouchWood Editions in September, 2009. See: www.robertamos.com
GREG BLANCHETTE (a.k.a. greg blee) moved to Vancouver Island’s west coast 13 years ago. His published work includes magazine articles, essays, short stories, chapbooks and on-line pieces. He is active in the local arts and environmental scenes, nurtures an interest in music and performance poetry, and takes his community seriously.
KAREN CHARLESON is a mother and grandmother, married to Stephen Charleson. She and her family are members of the House of Kinquashtacumlth and the Hesquiaht First Nation. Karen is a long-time resident of Hesquiaht traditional territories, where she and her husband operate Hooksum Outdoor School. Karen has an MA in Integrated Studies.
PETER CRESSEY is a furniture maker (naturaledges.ca) who lives in Victoria with his partner Sonya and daughter Fern. He has been involved in the non-profit bookstore Camas and in helping to organise a twenty-year Walbran blockade reunion.
MICHAEL SCOTT CURNES, author of the novel Val (1996 Brownell & Carroll) spent eight years living, working, writing, and loving in Clayoquot Sound (1995-2003). Today he is Western Canada Planned Giving Coordinator for Nature Conservancy of Canada in Vancouver. In his spare time he writes, sings, acts, and dances in local productions. His latest novel is For the Love of Mother.
ROBERT DALTON is an Associate Professor in Art Education at the University of Victoria. His studio practice supports and is supported by his research in children’s art-making in diverse cultures. Having lived on the prairies for forty years, he has a special appreciation for the climate, geography, flora and fauna of the west coast as a “magical place.”
ADRIAN DORST is a long time Tofino resident whose careers have varied widely during his life, from industrial painter and steeple-jack in his youth, to taxidermist, field-ornithologist, and nature photographer. While his photographs have been seen widely, less well known is the fact that he is also an accomplished wood carver and sculptor.
KEVEN DREWS shut down the Westcoaster.ca in early 2011, but remains a journalist. Keven says he is still dealing with his Dad’s death, and wonders, like many sons, how he could have had a better relationship with his father.
GAEL DUCHENE has lived in Clayoquot Sound for twenty-four years. On her wood lathe, Gael turns burls from local wood that industry has discarded, and then adds hand carving and other artistic embellishments. “Heart Song,” Gael’s first writing attempt, won first prize in the More Than Just Mud Contest of Words in 2008.
MICHAEL J. EMME is an exhibiting photographer, printmaker and art educator. Born in California, he has co-created comic books, gallery art, installations and performance works with elementary students, educators and fine arts graduate students across BC, in Nova Scotia, Ellensburg, across Alberta, and he now teaches at UVic near the water.
MIKE EMME’s pursuit of photography, printmaking, publication design and writing along with work as a classroom performance artist has taken him across North America. He has marked his return to Victoria with work in a graphic novel-esque form intended to provoke a collaborative-creative environment where lines between reader/author/artist/designer blur.
DAVID FLOODY is late: late to Clayoquot Sound, late to writing novels, late to return library books. But his desk overlooks the busy ‘Gibson Path,’ and early on he learned that this daily flow of village life represents narratives in embryo. If the village ever decides to push Gibson Street through and asphalt his inspiration, David will be the first to throw himself in front of the bulldozers.
For over fifteen years HEATHER FRISE has made documentary films, including the Genie award-winning Bones of the Forest. She has worked extensively as a freelance documentary film editor and educator, and has taught at Access to Media Education Society, Emily Carr University and Toronto’s Ontario College of Art and Design.
KIM GOLDBERG’s latest book, RED ZONE, documents homelessness and urban decay in downtown Nanaimo through poetry and photography. Her previous poetry collection, Ride Backwards on Dragon, was a finalist for Canada’s Lampert Memorial Award. She is the publisher of Pig Squash Press.
KIT GRAUER will soon be Professor Emerita of the University of British Columbia where she taught for 27 years. She will be found walking on the beaches at Boundary Bay and Galiano and pursuing her art making, research and time with her family, friends and menageries.
SANDRA GWYNNE MARTIN is a poet living on the west coast, snug in the Gulf Islands between the mainland and Vancouver Island. She recently left the city pace behind in search of a lifestyle where she needed neither a watch nor a daytimer. She is loving country life and relishing the wisdom of donkeys.
KEITH HARRISON, born in Vancouver, has written seven books, including Eyemouth, Crossing the Gulf, Furry Creek, and Elliot & Me, and has edited Islands West: Stories from the Coast. He teaches film, creative writing, and Shakespeare at Vancouver Island University and lives on Hornby Island.
MELODY HESSING lives in Vancouver, and has taught and published sociology for most of her working life. She now scribes more creatively in non-fiction and has been published in several literary anthologies and journals. Her creative non-fiction book, Up Chute Creek: An Okanagan Idyll, was published in 2009.
MARK HOBSON lives in Tofino, on the rugged west coast of Vancouver Island, where he has painted for over twenty years. A diverse artist in both subject and media, he is equally comfortable in watercolour, oils, and acrylics. Mark’s work has won awards in the United States, Canada and Europe.
WANDA HURREN is a poetic photographer/cartographer living in Victoria. Her artwork has been featured in several exhibitions of text and image. She is a member of Crossgrain, one of the few remaining darkroom societies, and she is an Associate Professor at the University of Victoria.
JAN JANZEN lives in a cedar driftwood and glass cabin shaped like a mushroom with a clamshell cap at the edge of a small grove of gigantic old-growth trees at the edge of space and time, in the heart of Oneness. His book, Rumours and Other Truths about the Indescribable, is available in Tofino.
SUSAN KAMMERZELL is riveted by the massive changes in the world around and within us, and is using the strengths gained during her coastal decades to create a life that lies within the budget of our planetary biosphere. She is learning, gardening and building her new village homestead in BC’s interior.
SHIRLEY LANGER began writing about Tofino soon after moving there. The result was Road’s End: Tales of Tofino. An historical fiction novel, Anita’s Revolution, about the 1961 Cuban Literacy Campaign will soon be available on Amazon.com. Shirley volunteers teaching literacy at Literacy Victoria, and oh!–Shirley loves to sing.
BERNICE LEVER, born in Smithers, retired to Bowen Island, BC in 2001, after decades around Toronto. Her 10th poetry book is “Imagining Lives”, Black Moss, spring 2012. She has written a college English textbook. Now a freelance editor, she enjoys helping others get published. www.colourofwords.com
CHRISTINE LOWTHER is the author of Half-Blood Poems, My Nature, New Power, and A Cabin in Clayoquot; co-editor and co-author of Writing the West Coast: In Love with Place. She admits to sometimes writing ‘soft’ poems about bees and flowers. Just to break things up.
SHARON MCINNES writes a monthly column, Just for the Birds, for The Flying Shingle on Gabriola Island. Her first book, Up Close & Personal, is a compilation of those columns with colour photos. She has also written articles for several magazines. Currently Sharon is working on a novel.
MARY ANN MOORE is a poet and freelance writer based in Nanaimo where she leads Writing Life, a weekly circle. She is as happy writing her own poetry and personal essays as she is mentoring others in their own writing practice. See www.maryannmoore.ca for Writing Home: A Whole Life Practice.
LIBBIE MORIN‘s inspiration stems from growing up in downtown Toronto, living in isolation on Vancouver Island and being immersed in the beauty and magic of Tofino. She won the E. Bickle Award at North Island College. Her work appears in NIC’s Zeitgiest and in the E-zine, Pages of Stories.
MARGARET MURPHY is passionate about sharing stories and helping others find their storytelling voice. A co-founder of the Around Town Tellers in Nanaimo, Margaret helps build community through story, whether in the classroom or boardroom or spaces in between.
SUSAN MUSGRAVE lives and writes on Haida Gwaii. She teaches in the University of British Columbia’s Optional Residency in Creative Writing MFA Programme. Her last collection of poems was Origami Dove (McClelland & Stewart) and a novel, Given, will be published by Thistledown in the fall of 2013.
AVIS RASMUSSEN is a painter, printmaker, and poet-illustrator of chapbooks Charms of the Seashore, Take Five Coast To Coast, Saanich Fields and Garden World. She paints around Sidney, her birthplace, and Victoria where she lives, and on her travels. Winchester Galleries of Oak Bay exhibits her paintings. With a BFA and MEd, she is currently on the University of Victoria Alumni Board. She is a CARFAC-BC artist.
ROLAND RASMUSSEN, painter, poet, and writer, born on Vancouver Island in 1966, is chiefly interested in the building of artistic communities within Victoria. A painter at an early age, he has sought to document our western Canadian landscape and provide new ways to use image and colour to bring his subjects to a curious eye.
VELCROW RIPPER is an award-winning director of dozens of films and videos, including Bones of the Forest, an environmental film co-directed with Heather Frise which received nine major film awards, including a Genie award for best feature-length documentary. His non-fiction writing has appeared in anthologies and magazines, and he is currently developing part three of the Fierce Light Trilogy.
JANET MARIE ROGERS is a Mohawk/Tuscarora writer performance, recording and video poet. She has been living on traditional Coast Salish territory (Victoria) since 1994. Janet is a radio host on Native Waves Radio CFUV fm and CBC’s Tribal Clefs. She is Victoria’s current poet laureate; present to 2015.
AHAVA SHIRA completed her PhD in Language & Literacy Education from the University of British Columbia, where she developed the arts-based practice of loving inquiry. Author of a new poetry CD, Love is Like This (2010), Ahava now works as a creative mentor, helping youth & adults to follow their hearts. Visit ahavashira.com.
LISA SHATZKY’s poetry has been published across Canada and the U.S. in magazines, journals, books, and anthologies. Her poetry book Do Not Call Me By My Name (Black Moss Press, 2011) was short-listed for the 2012 Gerald Lampert Poetry Award in Canada. When not writing she works as a psychotherapist on Bowen Island, B.C.
ANITA SINNER has been an exhibiting artist in the Sooke region for fifteen years. She is an Assistant Professor in Art Education at Concordia University, Montreal, and her research interests include life writing, arts-based research, community art education and digital media.
CELESTE SNOWBER is a dancer, writer and educator who is an Associate Professor in the Faculty of Education at Simon Fraser University. A well published author, she also creates site-specific performances of her poetry and dance in seascapes. Celeste is the mother of three sons, all a tribe of artists. Her website is: www.celestesnowber.com
HEATHER KELLERHALS-STEWART lives on one of the original Quadra Island homesteads where she and her family manage a farm and woodlot. Depending on weather you can find her working in a garden gone wild or writing – picture books, novels for young people, sometimes poetry and essays.
JOANNA STREETLY is a freelance writer, illustrator and editor living afloat near Tofino. She is the author of Silent Inlet (Oolichan) and Paddling Through Time (Raincoast). Her current work-in-progress is historical fiction set in 1919 both at Lennard Island Lighthouse (Clayoquot Sound) and on the Isle of Wight.
MARLA THIRSK, known as “Ucluelet’s Artist,” has lived in the region for almost thirty years, painting many of the town’s murals and playing an active role in all aspects of the arts. Working in several different mediums, her style is eclectic and her art has gone all over the world.
JANINE WOOD was born in Kamloops in 1966. She has lived on Vancouver Island for more than twenty years, and has travelled extensively to Australia, New Zealand, Europe and the UK. Janine has worked in the restaurant industry, studied dance, and attended university until moving to the far west coast where she now resides.
JOHANNA VANDERPOL is the author of Honouring Your Emotions: Why It Matters and a positive psychology coach who enjoys helping clients live their best life. She is grateful to live in a home overlooking Cowichan Bay with her eighteen-year-old son. She can be reached at www.johannavanderpol.com
BILL ZUK is Professor Emeritus in Art Education at the University of Victoria. He is co-editor of the BC Art Teachers’ Association Journal and curates the Art in Public Places program. Bill received the national Gaitskell Award for Excellence in 2007 and was Artist-in-Residence at Num-ti-jah in the Canadian Rockies in 2009. He is currently collaborating on a visual arts project with Ballet Victoria