Final year for Ramsey, first year for 14 others

Derek Kilbourn

Sounder News

Tuesday, October 7 2014

Gabriola Island is BC’s best destination this Thanksgiving weekend as more than 60 artists—20 more than last year—open their studios to visitors from around the world during the 18th Annual Thanksgiving Studio Tour on the “Isle of the Arts.” 

The 54 studios will be open from 10:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. from October 11 to 13.

As islanders know, Gabriola has a lot of artists living here. 

According to the 2011 census, Gabriola has the fifth highest number of artists in the workforce in all of Canada—and the artists on this Tour will be presenting work in almost every media imaginable. 

Whether someone’s interest lies in painting, sculpture, photography, jewellery, textiles, pottery, glass, leather, wood, mixed media—just name it, Gabriola artists are creating it. 

At many of the studios, the artists will be at work demonstrating their techniques.

This year marks the final year for Kathy Ramsey to be at the helm of Gabriola Artworks in the heart of Folklife Village.

As one of the Tour founders and long-time (now past) president of the Gabriola Arts Council, she promises to make her final time on the Tour a memorable one.

Artworks will be featuring silversmith Lindsay Stocking Godfrey who was the first featured artist for the very first Studio Tour.  

Ramsey said, “I like the synchronicity of it all plus it might very well be a great way to pass the torch on to someone new at the helm of Artworks; hint hint - keep your eyes peeled for an announcement soon. 

“We’re kicking off the Tour early this year with Lindsay’s “Industrial Revolution” on Thursday, Oct. 9, from 7:00 – 9:00 p.m.  

“Alongside Lindsay is her guest artist, Roy Svennson, exhibiting his factory-style lighting - think Steam Punk meets Gabriola creativity.”

That same night, Artworks will also open the Preview Gallery which will feature the works of participating artists on the Tour. With 14 new artists on the Tour this year it’s a good chance to do some pre-tour homework.

Artworks is Tour Central all weekend long with lots of brochures, info and advice.

Ramsey said, “I’m so very proud of the Gabriola Arts Council for its dedication to produce such a quality event and for all the quality events they produce. It shouldn’t come as a surprise to many folks on the island but it’s definitely well-known in off-island circles that the Gabriola Arts Council is ranked in the top tier of non-profit art service providers in BC by our provincial funders.  

“The Arts Council has truly been one of the best schools I’ve ever attended. I have learned so much working with all the wonderful board members, past and present. I will miss them all terribly.”

Fortunately, as President of ArtsBC, Ramsey has a built-in excuse to keep tabs on what’s going on with Gabriola’s art scene and she’ll be cheering everyone on from her new home on a gulf island not so far away.

As Ramsey mentioned, along with many year-to-year favourites, there are 14 new artists taking part in the 2014 Tour.

New to the Tour, but not new to Gabriola are:

Amanda Craigmyle – beads and jewellery

Michele Fire-River Heart – mixed media

Kathy McIntyre – jewellery from wood

Trudy Broadley – watercolour

Alois Verlinden – pencil sketches (etc.)

Christine Bletcher – fabric art

And joining the tour in their first year living on Gabriola:

Heather Cameron – embroidery

Anne Havard – watercolour

Catherine Hallam – screen printing

Lottie Anderson – printmaking

Ocean Mussack – mixed media sculpture

Gretchen Markle – paintings

Moyra Watson-White – drawings, paintings

Tom Gilligan – abstract photography