Artist Nancy Slaght stands in the main gallery at the Arts Centre at Cedar Hill beside a painting completed by one of her students, Joyce Almond, entitled Quiet Contemplation. The exhibition of Slaght’s studio groups continues until March 4 at the Cedar Hill recreation centre.

Cedar Hill arts centre explores works inspired by nature

Local artist Nancy Slaght and studio groups showcase works for springtime show

Just in time for spring, a colourful new exhibit at the Art Centre at Cedar Hill recreation centre presents works inspired by nature.

Continuing through March 4 in the Main Gallery, Nature: intrigues, amuses and inspires features works by artist Nancy Slaght’s three studio groups.

As teacher, mentor and facilitator, Slaght wanted her students to create art inspired by a particular theme – in this case, the broad, yet captivating theme of nature – with the added initial challenge of creating a piece within a square or rectangular shape.

“It took them a while to get going but soon they were on fire,” Slaght says. “I gave them a box, but (the assignment) forced them to think outside the box – I love that metaphor.”

With work ranging from a large-scale tulips to a hypnotizing tiger detail to a whimsical “herd of cats,” the exhibit reveals how the students interpreted that theme, influenced by their own experiences and interests.

Concluding the assignment with a group show celebrates the students’ achievements, particularly those who hadn’t had the opportunity to show their work before.

Coming to the Community Arts Council’s Saanich gallery from around the region, some artists have provided one piece for the show, others four. While most works are two-dimensional paintings and drawings, mixed media works and several sculptures add variety to the eclectic exhibit.

What will viewers take away?

“I think there will be a range of responses but I hope they will enjoy the variety and see the varying levels of experience and see the artists’ willingness to explore,” Slaght reflects. “I would hope it might also encourage people to explore their artistic side.”

editor@saanichnews.com

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