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Metal artists present cross-generational show at Nanaimo’s Woodgrove Centre

Work by Hayley Willoughby, her partner and father on display in Lululemon window
West Coast-themed metal art by Nanaimo artists Hayley Willoughby (pictured), her father Jack and partner Blair LeFebvre is on display in the window of Lululemon at Woodgrove Centre from now until March 13 as part of the store’s monthly local artist program. (Josef Jacobson/The News Bulletin)

Hayley Willoughby said she was young when her father quit his job to become a full-time artist and now she’s following his example.

After humble beginnings displaying her work in local coffee shops, the Nanaimo-based metal artist has now sold her pieces across Canada and the United States. From now until March 13 she’ll be showing her own work alongside that of her father Jack in the window of Lululemon at Woodgrove Centre.

“I started it about four years ago just playing around in a spare room of my house and now it’s grown into my full-time business,” she said of her art practice.

Willoughby said the store reached out to her after one of the employees acquired a piece of hers. The West Coast-inspired display features work depicting the Tofino islands, humpback whales, Sitka spruces and bull kelp. Willoughby created her pieces with the help of her partner Blair LeFebvre.

The pieces are made from a plasma-cut lightweight aluminum alloy, which is then painted with an acrylic paint recipe of Willoughby’s own design. After being poured, the paint is manipulated by air, heat and gravity before Willoughby covers the work in resin.

She said she looks forward to continue showing work with her father and partner.

“It was really fun designing that all together and we’re already seeking out other projects where my dad and I and Blair can all work together as well,” Willoughby said. “Because with his work and my work blended together, it’s just beautiful.”

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