DENMAN ISLAND — The Denman Art Gallery invites you to the grand finale of the summer season, featuring Denman photographers par excellence, Andrew Fyson and Bryan Treen.
They will exhibit at both the Arts Centre and the Seniors Gallery. The opening night was Sept. 8.
Andrew’s show, titled Water Reflections, includes ocean landscapes, wetlands, and trumpeter swans familiar to (and loved by) Denman Islanders, as well as images reflected in the River Lea in London, England.
Reflected light on water is an integral part of each piece: some show a mirror image and some a distorted one. Andrew is particularly interested in capturing shapes which have been broken up and reformed by the reflection of light from rippled water surfaces, thereby adding an element of mystery or bringing a clarity of detail which escapes the eye when viewing the actual scene.
One photo taken from the bridge on Pickles Road on an early winter morning, shows a young trumpeter swan just opening its wings as it rises from the mist. The sun is shining through its spread wing feathers and reflects on the water which is swirling around the swan and looks like drops of mercury in liquid silver.
Another photo shows reflected trees on Chickadee Lake on an early fall morning. The image is so perfect it is hard to tell which are the actual trees and which is the reflected image.
Bryan’s exhibit of black and white photographs is titled Islands, and like Andrew, includes photos of Denman and of far-off shores. There are 15 to 20 images of Denman Island, New Zealand’s south island, Iceland, and Cornwall, England.
The inspiration for the show was a small collection of essays published in 2005 called Islands of British Columbia (edited by Graham Brazier and Nick Doe), which resulted from a conference on Denman the same year.
Bryan was particularly drawn to the essay by Gerald Hodge, An Island’s Edge, in which the author writes about the edge of an island as its defining characteristic, the place where land and water meet, ever changing, impossible to measure, and infinitely fascinating. Their shared passion for lands’ end is clearly reflected in Bryan’s images.
A photograph of an old farm in Iceland shows stone buildings strung out along the edge of a small cliff overlooking a fjord, with a view beyond of the sea and the sky. In the distance, just below the horizon, is a small island outlined against the dark shape of the other side of the fjord. In the foreground is the road to the farm.
The calm of the sea, the stark outline of the buildings and their place seemingly on the very edge of the cliff give the farm an almost deserted look, and one has the impression of a place not just on the edge of the water but on the edge of the world.
Another Iceland photo, Tidal Snow, was taken on a black sand beach in a blizzard. It shows narrow looping strings of white froth on the crest of waves coming in over a shallow beach; they look like lines of swirling white lace starkly contrasted against the black incoming tide.
This collection of photographs will capture the hearts and minds of Denman Islanders, and all who have an affinity for water, for islands, and for where they meet. Their beauty will appeal to everyone, regardless of where their heart lives.
The show runs from to Sept. 20 and both venues are open every day from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m.