Foothills galleries brimming with local work
Art: Colourful choices abound from talented artisans
Wednesday, Dec 15, 2010 06:00 am
Anyone looking to buy art for someone on their gift list will be gratified to know with an abundance of local artistic talent choices abound.
Karen Gimbel of the Bluerock Gallery in Black Diamond pointed out even though they have works from painters from across Alberta there are many choices besides art to hang on the wall.
Jewelry is one area in particular where they are well appointed with items from local artisans including the distinctive work of Turner Valley resident Linda Catt.
“Linda is doing quite a lot of beautiful jewelry,” Gimbel said. “She’s becoming pretty well known in the area because she is showing her work at a lot of different events. Her company is called Cat’s Eye Jewelry Design and we have a lot of her work in our store.”
The Bluerock Gallery is also pleased to feature the jewelry of Okotoks silversmith Shelagh Blatz.
“Shelagh does beautiful combinations of silver and semi precious stones,” Gimbel said. “The pieces are quite bold and beautiful.”
Another area silversmith is Sheila Fendall of Black Diamond.
“Her style is very different and quite unique,” Gimbel said of Fendall. “She does a lot of chain mail, silver linked kinds of pieces. ”
Decorative and functional pottery is a big part of what they feature at Bluerock Gallery. Much of their work comes form Southern Alberta potters including Stephen Evans of High River. Gimbel explained they carry the Galaxy line by Evans.
“A lot of people really like this line because it’s sturdy, functional and beautiful,” she said.
Fans of the original glasswork of Julia Reimer and Tyler Rock should take note you can still get some of their glass bowls and other interesting pieces in time for the holidays. It’s available in Black Diamond either by visiting their Firebrand Glass studio at 3 Ave. S.W or at the Bluerock Gallery on Centre Ave. West.
If you are in the market for paintings and photography Altitude Art Gallery in Olde Towne Okotoks has a variety of pieces to choose from.
For example, Wendy Palmer of the Red Deer Lake area is a wildlife painter whose work is growing in popularity. She paints primarily in acrylics, but is now doing some pieces in oil as well. She’s involved in the Artists for Conservation Society and was elected as the Ducks Unlimited artist of the year for 2010.
Leah Mitchell of the Altitude gallery is not only pleased to have some of Palmer’s work, but that of emerging Okotoks artist Glynn Anderson as well.
“He’s interesting because he’s kind of just finding himself as an artist,” she said. “He does a lot of landscapes and nature art but tends not to deal with any animals.”
An experienced art teacher, it’s only recently Anderson has seriously devoted himself to creating his own paintings.
Contrary to the belief of some you don’t have to break the bank when you are selecting art as a gift.
“Many of the artists we have do a selection of originals but with some of their pieces they also offer limited edition giclees,” Mitchell explained. “They are high quality prints on canvas and they are often much more affordable than the originals.”