The 20th Annual Nanaimo Artwalk takes place on December 1 and 2. Visit me in The White Room (4 Church St.) to view my new work, as well as works in progress. I’ll also have prints and cards of favourite paintings from the last 10 years. I’m currently working on a new oil on board commission, and a series of small mixed media (pyrography and oil on board) entitled, “World on Fire.” These edgy pieces are inspired by past and current events that I find alarming, but that we should remember, never forget, and learn from. The fires of Summer 2018 which signal run away climate change, alongside the pipeline purchase is what started this series for me, but it has expanded in my mind to include, the Holocaust, Indian Residential Schools, and Detention of Migrant Children in the US and Europe. It is my hope that humanity can pull together to seek peaceful, lasting solutions to the myriad crises we are facing as a society.
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This newest commission – Gateway – is an oil on canvas 41″ x 72″. It is inspired by the idea of merging one’s consciousness with the ocean to achieve a sense of nirvana.
Nice! I finally upgraded my site and am excited to share my newest painting with the world. It’s a commission for a lovely couple’s first wedding anniversary. The inspiration is Steelhead Salmon fishing on the Sarita River on Vancouver Island, BC.
Nadine Wiepning- oil on board, 36″ x 48″, 2017
Thanks to the City of Nanaimo and the DNBIA for making this installation possible!
VIU post-bacc Education students were teamed up with 9 community artists to create an art piece that represents a Social Justice issue and its solutions.
We created a 5 ft. tall cell phone titled “Blood Phone i5: The Latest and Greatest in Modern Slavery” to highlight the plight of men, women and children in the Congo who are forced to mine coltan for use in most technological devices. Their slave labour reaps profits for the warlords, who sell the Coltan to fuel the local war.
We added “apps” to illustrate the problems (there are too many) and the solutions (which includes recycling your old cellphone, not upgrading, unplugging, seeking out Fair Trade electronics*, and getting the facts).
*Fair Trade electronics are not yet a reality, but we can make it one! See: http://www.change.org/en-CA
I worked on this mural in the last glorious days of September. I enjoyed many sunny afternoons as I strove to bring some light and colour to a previously blank space.
My inspiration came from Impressionist painters and their influences, specifically the Barbizon school (a style of painting that was revolutionary in its day for featuring regular people in paintings, as well as the natural environment).
Next time you are near Nob Hill Park, be sure to check out the mural, around the back of Oak Tree Manor.
Thanks to Slegg Lumber for first, delivering the materials for no charge, and then for delivering the finished piece!
Thanks to the City of Nanaimo and The Nanaimo Museum for temporarily displaying the mural until its final installation at the top of the China Steps, when the regeneration plan begins! I was recently invited to attend the China Steps Design Charette, with about 40 participants including landscape architects, City planners, DNBIA staff, VIU students (Geography and Horticulture), and some business owners. After some background presentations, we spent the rest of the day getting creative! In eight groups, we brainstormed and created colourful maps of the improved China Steps. The City planners told us to create like there were no limitations from the City. We each started with a specific design issue, and worked that into the finished drawing. All eight groups presented theirs, then they were taped to the walls for everyone to vote with blue dots on their favourite elements. These maps, along with notes taken by Geog students for each group, will be synthesized into a final design. This will be used to apply for grants to launch specific elements of the redesign, such as living/green walls, better accessibility, more public art and programming for the space in front of CHLY. This whole project will happen in 3 phases, beginning with programming the space (outdoor film nights anyone?), the installation of the mural and perhaps some outdoor museum banners. There may be construction, and all kinds of exciting developments for our beloved downtown! Cheers to the City of Nanaimo for being forward-thinking and creative. Thanks also to the Nanaimo Heritage Commission and Crankshaw Holdings.
ABOUT THE PAINTING
The piece is an historic mural inspired by traditional Chinese art representing Nanaimo’s third Chinatown, framed by the coastal landscape. It is informed by photographs, footage, Chinese painting, and mythology, with one animal for each direction: Black Tortoise (North, Winter, Blue/Black, Water/Night), Azure Dragon (East, Spring, Green, Wood), Vermillion Bird (South, Summer, Fire, Red), and White Tiger (West, Autumn, White, Metal). The September 1960 Fire is depicted by the red bird and residents shown with suitcases. The White Tiger and the buildings acknowledge the Chinese business community. The Street scene includes the “Pine & Hecate” street sign indicating the original location of Chinatown in Nanaimo, a lion dance, and a few onlookers, all from historic photos courtesy of Nanaimo Community Archives.
I’m very excited to announce that the China Steps Mural will be displayed at the Nanaimo Museum until its final installation at the top of the China Steps later this summer. View the finished piece anytime after Wednesday, May 9!
Ahhhh… the white layer helps to brighten and define. The end is near! Next comes the flames of the red bird (now yellow).