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Thursday, December 8, 2011

Vancouver Today/Pauline: Emily Carr and Friends

Vancouver Today/Pauline: Emily Carr and Friends: This statue by Joe Fafard is of one of Canada's great icons Emily Carr an artist and writer born in Victoria, BC Throughout the late 1920s ...

Emily Carr and Friends

This statue by Joe Fafard is of one of Canada's great icons Emily Carr an artist and writer born in Victoria, BC Throughout the late 1920s and 1930s Carr travelled away from Victoria. Her last trip north was in the summer of 1928, when she made a trip to the Nass and Skeena Rivers, as well as to the Queen Charlottes. She travelled to Friendly Cove and the northeast coast of Vancouver Island, and then up to Lillooet in 1933. Recognition of her work grew steadily, and she was exhibited in London, Paris, Washington and Amsterdam, as well as major Canadian cities.[18]

- I glory in our wonderful west and I hope to leave behind me some of the relics of its first primitive greatness. These things should be to us Canadians what the ancient Briton's relics are to the English. Only a few more years and they will be gone forever into silent nothingness and I would gather my collection together before they are forever past.[9]

Emily Carr documented Canadian history through her paintings and writings

Location:South Granville, Vancouver

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Arriving Home

Arriving Home, Dennis Oppenheim (USA) Plexiglass, steel Departure and arrival, as well as the freedom and the exhilaration of travel and mobility are crystallized in the rhythmic movement in this circular sculpture created by one of the most influential, innovative and respected artists working today. The circular form of “Arriving Home” suggests movement and mimics the rhythms of traveling. Both departure and arrival are crystallized in this metallic spiral. Perfectly positioned at the YVR International Airport arrivals terminal, a site of “Transit-ion”, the theme of the 2009-2011 Vancouver Biennale, the sculpture suggests the freedom and the exhilaration of travel and mobility.


Tuesday, September 6, 2011

Powell River

Located northwest of Vancouver, Powell River is part of the mainland of British Columbia, separated from the Lower Sunshine Coast by Jervis Inlet, which cuts in from Malaspina Strait. Proud of its heritage, and now the largest community on the Sunshine Coast, Powell River is known today for its dynamic cultural life, fascinating heritage and Aboriginal tours, quaint Bed and Breakfasts, and great outdoor recreation - including, hiking, camping and kayaking, excellent fishing, and superb scuba diving. Powell River is a popular year-round sea-to-mountain recreation area, with something for everyone. Miles of hiking trails lead to beautiful lookouts, waterfalls, peaceful lakes, and spectacular alpine hiking. All this in a town that lays claim to the mildest climate in Canada, where the sun shines each year for an average of 1,760 hours.

There are many different restaurants and art galleries along the main street. Below is the old jail cell now a Mexican restaurant

Location:Sunshine Coast, Powell River BC

Monday, August 8, 2011

Discovery, Captain George Vancouver

Mural by Jim McKenzie 1986

Two hundred years ago, False Creek went through to Burrard Inlet and Lost Lagoon. The mural on the west wall of the old Capers store in Dundarave Village depicts a June morning in 1792 when the Discovery, the Chatham, the Sutil and the Mexicana anchored near the island that today is Stanley Park and downtown Vancouver.

The British Captain, George Vancouver, breakfasted with his Spanish counterparts, Dionisio Galiano and Cayetano Valdez. They were the first to explore Indian Arm which the Spanish named "Canal de Sasamat".

Location:West Vancouver

Friday, July 22, 2011

Celebrating Flight

This perfect setting of clouds and stars for a beautiful Totem Pole is situated close to the observation deck at Vancouver airport. Haida artist Don Yeomans created this work as a tribute to man a creature not naturally gifted with the ability to fly but has learned to do so through intelligence and ingenuity. As such man is positioned highly on the pole under the creator Raven

The inclusion of the western and eastern symbols are meant to strengthen cross-cultural bonds and recognize Vancouver International Airport as a multicultural meeting place.

Location:Vancouver Airport YVR

Britannia Mine

Nestled in the mountains along the scenic drive from Vancouver to Whistler is the historical town of Britannia. Most commonly know for it's old Copper Mine.

Dr AA Forbes first discovered copper on Britannia Mountain in 1888 leading to the creation of Britannia Mine in 1889. At one time it produced more copper than any mine in the British Commonwealth. having survived landslide, flood and fire the mine finally closed in 1974 when it became uneconomically viable. The main mine building was declared a national historic site in 1987. Tours are regularly conducted inside the mine giving tourists a feel of what it was like to work here in the 1800's This Sea to Sky wood sculpting studio is situated downtown Britannia. The magnificent wood carvings can be seen as you drive by on the Sea to Sky Highway

Location:Britannia Beach, BC

Saturday, July 2, 2011

Wildfire Memorial

This memorial stands outside the Public Library and Art Gallery in downtown Kamloops. It is a memorial and tribute to all who were involved in the devastating wildfires of 2003. All of us who live in this part of the world remember this very sad summer and most of us knew someone who was in some way connected to this devastation.

There is a plaque erected to the side of the monument which reads:

During the summer of 2003 the Thompson-Nicola region endured it's most devastating wildfires ever. Unprecedented in numbers and massive in scope, the fires destroyed 89 homes and 7 business's, scorched 62,000 hectares of. Forest and range lands, left hundreds jobless and caused the evacuation of 13,000 people. Wildfire Memorial, created by artist Cameron Kerr of Vancouver BC is dedicated to the evacuees and to the thousands of firefighters, emergency workers and volunteers from far and near who worked tirelessly to assist them in every way possible.

Location:Kamloops, BC Canada

Monday, June 27, 2011


Engagement, is one of several versions American artist Dennis Oppenheim has produced referencing the traditional engagement rings. In a "Pop Art" form where everyday domestic objects are taken out of their domestic environment and re-conceptualized as monumental sculptures, this version of Engagement rises nearly 30 feet. Sitting on top of the rings where the diamonds would be traditionally, there are two translucent houses of plexiglass and aluminum, illuminated and precariously tilted away from each other. As a commentary on the precarious balances in marriage, that of the romantic, traditional, economic and the illusions inherent in the institution, the meaning of "Engagement" is intentionally open-ended. Oppenheim often declines to interpret or explain his work, leaving the interpretation to the viewer.(Vancouver Biennale 2009-2011)

Oppenheim has been constructing large-scale sculptural works since the 1990's and is one of the most influential and respected artists working today. His work was recognized with a Lifetime Achievement Award by the Vancouver Sculpture Biennale in 2007. The initial installation of this piece in 2005 coincided with same sex marriage debates taking place in Canada. The work was subsequently acquired by the Vancouver Biennale Legacy Foundation in 2007 as a gift to the citizens of Vancouver. (Vancouver Bienalle 2009-2011)

Location:Sunset Beach, Vancouver,BC

Sunday, June 26, 2011

Power Smart Bike Rack

Directly in front of Science World and in the heart of the bike trails community a very innovative and unusual work of art can be found.

The installation is part sculpture, part bike rack and part solar powered lamppost. Up to 12 bikes can be parked in the tree's roots, while another three can be hung from its trunk.

The concept for the project came from Spring Gillard, who teamed up with Better Environmentally Sound Transportation and Science World to secure a grant for the project from the city's cultural services and public art program. B.C. Hydro Power Smart funded the solar lighting, while the park board provided the land.

Location:Science World, Vancouver BC

Saturday, June 25, 2011

Vancouver General Hospital Art

A little more than a century ago the Heather Pavilion Vancouver's new hospital was built on the slopes of Fairview and welcomed it's first forty-seven patients. Since 1908 VGH has grown by leaps and bounds as observed by the many newer pavilions and research facilities constructed over the past century most of which still exist today. There is a plan underway to bring the Heather Pavilion back to life and to refurbish and upgrade some of the other older VGH buildings. Heather Pavillion 1908

The first ambulance at VGH

Other older buildings at VGH include the Doctors Residence and the Willow Chest Pavilion

Some of the more recent buildings on VGH site (Top) Main acute care buildings at Vancouver General today Jimmy Patterson Pavilion and Centennial Pavilion (Below) Diamond Outpatient Building and Spinal Cord Research Centre

A stunning sight designed by Bunting Coady Architects of Vancouver with aesthetic flourishes by artist Alan Storey, the stylish power plant at West 12th Avenue and Willow Street is the final element in an eight-year initiative to complete the Jim Pattison pavilion.

As I walked through the hallways of the now Vancouver General Hospital I enjoyed the many very large works of art placed throughout the buildings. I photographed just a few of my favorites that were on display.

Hill Fire by Jack Shadboldt These are three very striking paintings placed side by side in the main lobby of the Jimmy Patterson Pavilion

The Best Place by Tom Miller

I Desire by Peter VoormeiJ

The Diamond Family Courtyard displays a number of beautiful works of art

Family Mosaic by Wendy Hamlin

Strange Constellation by Peter Aspel

A plaque in the main corridor reads VGH and UBC Hospital Foundation is committed to the healing power of art and to creating a stimulating and attractive environment for the benefit of patients and their families, staff and visitors.

Location:Vancouver, BC

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

"Ben Franklin" Piccard /Grumman PX-15

On my travels to photograph Bienalle public art I accidentally found this hidden gem. In front of the Maritime Museum in rather an obscure place stands "Ben Franklin" an Oceanographic Research Submersible. When I actually saw the size of the vessel in real life I found it difficult to imagine living in this tube for thirty days. The plaque reads: In 1969 the submersible made the worlds longest research dive when it drifted for thirty days in the Gulf Stream conducting scientific studies for the Naval Oceanographic Office and tests for NASA for the future Skylab Project to study human interactions within closed, confined quarters. The Gulf Stream Drift Mission added significantly to our knowledge of the Gulf Stream and the ocean in general.


Location:Vancouver, BC Canada

Friday, June 3, 2011

Chainsaw Carvings

When renowned artist Pete Ryan moved into the sleepy town of Hope just one hour from Vancouver he noticed there was a dead tree in a park downtown. He offered to carve the dead tree into an eagle to make an eye soar into something more interesting to look at. This quickly became a popular attraction for both locals and visitors alike. The city knew they were on to something special when tourists would come out of their way to Hope and take pictures of Pete’s carving. Soon after, the city displayed 27 more pieces of his carvings throughout the town and next thing you know it, Hope became the chainsaw carving capital of the world.

Spectacular carving at the waterfront. Note the tiny mice in his beard

Location:Hope, BC

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Park and Tilford Gardens

George Kuhn Plaque below statue reads: Former chair and CEO of Park and Tilford Distilleries. His vision and support enabled the construction of Park and Tilford Gardens which opened to the public in January 1969. The Gardens remain his gift to the community and the people of British Columbia

A beautiful Japanese Garden Is a tranquil area where people stop and sit for a while.

This western interpretation of the traditional Oriental style garden containing maples, pines, and bamboo pruned in the traditional Bonsai style.

The garden covers 3 acres and offers eight separate theme gardens including the Rose Garden where there are nearly 300 plants.

Location:North Vancouver, BC

Friday, May 13, 2011

Fisher Hauling in the Net

Gerhard Juchum's wonderful sculpture "Fisher Hauling in the Net" is located right beside the southeast corner of Livingstone Lake in Van Dusen Gardens

Mr. Juchum arrived in Vancouver from Romania in 1968 and died in 1977. During his brief career in Canada he produced more than 100 sculptures. "Fisher Hauling in the Net" was donated to VanDusen Botanical Garden in 1976. Two other sculptures by Juchum can be found in Vancouver - Lovers on the front lawn of City Hall and Untitled at Jericho Beach.

Location:Van Dusen Gardens

Sunday, May 8, 2011

The Inukshuk

Text from the plaque to be found at the foot of this statue situated at the southern end of English Bay Beach. "Ancient symbols of Inuit culture traditionally used as landmarks and navigation aids, this grey granite statue representing a human form with outstretched arms is a well-known symbol in Canada of northern hospitality and friendship. Constructed originally by Alvin Kanak of Rankin Inlet, this monument was commissioned by the Government of the Northwest Territories for its pavilion at Expo 86, and given to the City of Vancouver. Permanent location of the Inukshuk on this site was sponsored as a gift to the city in 1987 by Coast Hotels through the Vancouver Legacies Programs. Vancouver Board of parks and Recreation"

Location:English Bay Beach, Vancouver BC

Amazing Laughter

Yue Minjun was a leading figure in what came to be known in the 1990’s as Cynical Realism, an artistic movement that emerged in China after the 1989 student demonstrations in Tiananmen and the suppression of artistic expression. Humor, cynicism, repetition and an emphasis on the individual are common characteristics of this artistic movement. He was one of the first artists to translate this new ironic view of contemporary life, one that is expressed in the nihilistic hilarity at a time when little was funny.(Vancouver Biennale Blog)

A collection of bronze sculptures made in the image of the artists likeness

These images bring so much joy and pleasure to residents and tourists who visit English Bay.

Location:English Bay, Vancouver BC

Wednesday, May 4, 2011

Merritt Mountain Music Festival Art

The small town of Merritt BC has been host to the famous Merritt Mountain Music Festival for many years It is the largest country music festival in Canada and draws some of the biggest names in Country Music history.

Located three hours away from Vancouver, the town of Merritt is a beautiful place, surrounded by ranch lands and rivers which host rodeos and other events and showcase local talent

Year round visitors can wander through the Downtown to see its attractions which include over sixty giant murals and the Merritt Walk of Fame with hand prints of some of Country Music's hottest stars.

Almost every building has a giant size mural

In the recently built Spirit Square you can see murals of George Jones and Tanya Tucker

Painted by youths, the Merritt Murals are a government funded program which have become one of the town's many spectacular Country Music attractions.

Visitors can walk the streets and see the murals depicting Country Music legends such as Reba McEntire, Carrie Underwood, Alan Jackson, Elvis Presley, Tim McGraw, Wilf Carter and many more which have graced the stage in the centre of town at the annual Merritt Mountain Music Festival.

The historic streets of Downtown Merritt are graced with hand prints from famous country music acts which have been collected since 1993 such as the Dixie Chicks, Billy Ray Cyrus, Keith Urban, Trisha Yearwood, Randy Travis, Kenny Rogers, Johnny Cash and much more. Travis Tritt hand print.

Johnny Reid the most recent mural

Location:Merritt, BC Canada