January 28th - February 16th, 2020
Opening Reception: January 29th at 2pm
Dorothy Francis Gallery, The Old School House Arts Centre,
122 Fern Road West, Qualicum Beach, BC

Forest Bathing - Artist Statement

Trees are a great inspiration to me and have always been an important part of my life. My father was a tropical forestry consultant and fostered a love of trees and forests in all of his children. Trees have become a subject that I continually return to in my work. I am currently fascinated with how trees communicate with each other and us, and the benefits we get from trees. In Japan there is a movement called Forest Bathing, where people go in great numbers to bask in the forests and connect with the restorative atmosphere. This show is named Forest Bathing, to reflect this philosophy of connecting with the healing powers of trees, especially in the forest community. The aerosols released from the trees affect us both physically and spiritually. In forests we can find equilibrium, re-charge, and simply commune with the trees themselves. I want gallery goers to enter the gallery and get the same energy surrounded by my paintings as they would from a living, vital forest.

The medium I work in is oil paint mixed with cold wax medium. I mainly paint on cradled wood panels but also have paintings on stretched canvas or linen. When the oil paint is mixed with the cold wax it is thicker, dries faster, and has a more matte finish. It can be used thickly for textured effects. I have developed a number of techniques with this medium, using either palette knives or brushes. Many of the tree paintings for this show will be in my mosaic technique, where I overlap dabs of paint to create a mosaic like effect.