West Coastal autumn art buzz
– by Beatrice Smartt
It’s a wistfully beautiful time of year. Generally I feel more inclined to explore culture when autumn hits.Â I love fall.Â I’m game to go to the VAG or do some sort of artistic “thing”.
While it’s gorgeously warm out, No One Cares. But things go crisp and you toss on a favourite sweater,Â and it’s all Righteous.
I’m more a fan of underground or less-celebrated work; I like it’s non-pretense. Artists on the high wire, those who veerÂ daringly between stardom and disaster, who walk that tightrope.
And then sometimes there are those who positively bounceÂ from the creative trampoline upon you.
While the tattoo-styled pioneering works by the likes of Anjelique HoutkampÂ and local Holly Ruth Anderson portraying mournfully savvy cartoon-pinupsÂ are a more rare breed, two West Coast artists have recently captivatedÂ my imagination:Â Â Rebekah Joy Plett, with her nostalgic art-infused jewelry,Â and Matthew J. Price, with his painted sorrowful eyes.
Expressing differently, both artists often convey a Zen-like stillnessÂ permeating their respective pieces, while a darker wood lurksÂ not far under the lacquer.
Vanquishing any excessive fairytale gloss, each whimsically-animatedÂ creature languishes within scenes radiating mysterious tragedyÂ and eccentric adventure.
I enjoy the positively girlish quality to it all. Frilly dresses and Alice in Wonderland;Â chatting pets and other travesties, like monsters.
It’s tea and cakes with odd strangers.Â It’s very English, without being stuck up.
It’s partially sinister and absolutely pretty.
Beyond her own anomalous paintings and wearable art designs,
Vancouverite Plett is also the art directorÂ for the macabre and playfully dark Under The Juniper Tree,Â an online children’s art/lit zine, in which I discoveredÂ the genius that is Matthew J Price.
The self-taught Southern Californian artistÂ has designed for various publications including Camilla Lackberg’sÂ children’s books Le Tailleur de Pierre and La Princesse Des Glaces.
He continues to reinvent and explore pop art via his unique sensibility,Â currently enjoying the oil medium. Matthew is readying pieces for a gallery showingÂ of new works coming soon.
While continuing to donate a portion of proceeds to Pin-ups Against CancerÂ on a regular basis, for the entire month of October (Breast Cancer Awareness Month) Rebekah will be donatingÂ 50 per cent of salesÂ to the cause.
Invest in independent artists!
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