Commercial art gallery

The Gumboot exhibition redefines the graphic language

Andrea Pratt’s Spiral Notebook is open to the public at the Gumboot Café in Roberts Creek until June 30. Select works are displayed on her website at www.andreapratt.com and on Instagram at @andreaprattart.

Works by Langdale painter Andrea Pratt that encompass iconographic representations of spirituality and ecology are featured at the Gumboot Café in Roberts Creek this month.

Pratt gave the title Spiral Notebook to his solo exhibition of acrylic and oil paintings on square wood panels.

The show’s name is more than a nod to Pratt’s creative process. Large spirals spin and pulsate in each of his paintings.

The meaning of the form is specific to each of its contexts. In Insight, surrounded by leaves and forest fauna, concentric rings nurture germs of life. In Hamlet, interlocking ovoids reflect a wide-sky setting inhabited by a dragonfly and a long-legged magpie.

“A lot of the symbols are purely what appeals to me visually,” Pratt said. “But when I combine them, that’s where I create the intentionality of the piece. And I reuse my favorite symbols – for example, trees are one area I’ve had a lot of fun with over the past six months, just developing new ideas for tree shapes and how to make them work in a composition. You could say that the evolution of each symbol has its own timeline.

Pratt’s panel paintings are themselves composed of smaller panels, episodic patchworks of vignettes that can be viewed in any order.

“The concept of interdependence is central to human philosophies as diverse as Zen Buddhism and environmentalism,” she said, “and that is what I believe to be our most important guiding principle.”

Pratt’s personal trajectory traced an arc around Howe Sound. His Langdale studio faces the water towards the childhood homes of Horseshoe Bay and Lions Bay. A visual arts graduate from the University of Victoria, she became a full-time teacher while raising two children. Daily demands resulted in an 18-year hiatus from painting.

“But the desire never really went away,” she said. “Something was missing and it took me a while to realize that painting was that.”

Pratt quit her teaching career and began painting full time two decades ago. She has exhibited her work at venues including the Gibsons Public Art Gallery and Sechelt Hospital, as well as responding to a burgeoning commercial demand for what she describes as her “fusion of abstract, landscape and fine art. popular”.

Some of Pratt’s images were inspired by real encounters before being sublimated into formline abstraction. A crow regularly perched on her kitchen window sill, watching her work. “He was kind of a companion,” she said. “It was like I was his YouTube. I used photos of him as inspiration for a lot of my forms based on the type of postures he used.

Such serendipity is an essential ingredient of Pratt’s work. By combining and recombining archetypal forms, his paintings reward study with a meaning that depends on chance.

“I like the idea of ​​having a point of connection with people, but not immediately,” Pratt said. “There is something that attracts you, but you don’t understand it right away. It takes a little time.

Andrea Pratt’s Spiral Notebook is open to the public at the Gumboot Café in Roberts Creek until June 30. Select works are displayed on her website at www.andreapratt.com and on Instagram at @andreaprattart.