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Show and tell

Go local this spring with art and décor from these four Atlantic Canadian artists

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Blue Jay

by Melissa McCarthy of Made with Clay and Love (St. John’s, N.L.)

When seeking inspiration, polymer clay artisan Melissa McCarthy doesn’t go far, she just looks out her back door.

“Birds are my favourite subject to sculpt and lately,” she says. “I have a lot of blue jays visiting my backyard, which inspired this miniature sculpture. As with most of my pieces, I wanted to keep the style minimalist and whimsical.”

“Spring to me means colour, happiness, birds, and animals,” McCarthy says. “All of which this piece has.”

Tulips

by Sarah Webber of Rock Bottom Studio (Mersey Point, N.S.)

Sarah’s Webber’s latest stained-glass creation started with a challenge. After she created the prize statue for Liverpool International Theatre Festival awards, someone asked if she could make dragonflies.

She did, but thought the piece was missing something.

“I thought maybe I’d put a tulip in there and then it was like: one tulip is fine, but what about two?”

The piece eventually featured a blue dragonfly and three red flowers, nestled in green grass. The colours are joyful, something Webber associates with the season.

“It’s corny, but they make me happy and that makes me think of spring,” she says.

Evening Pedals

by Lenny Gallant of Birdmouse Reclaimed Wood Furniture and Home Décor (Cardigan, P.E.I.)

Lenny Gallant combines art with conservation by working exclusively in reclaimed wood at his studio, Birdmouse.

The latest addition to his Evening Pedals series connects to spring because it’s “about breathing new life into something.”

“When I reclaim wood, I always think of where it came from. It was garbage and I’m giving it new life,” he says about the 100-year-old pipe organ pedals this piece originated from. “Just like the spring season, it blooms again.”

When working on a pedal, Gallant doesn’t work from a plan. He lets his drawing form as he works, leading to spring-like designs.“It’s kind of like organic geometry and with that comes a lot of flowers and buds,” he says. “It’s not necessarily intentional, but that’s what happens.”

Mermaid Necklace

by Marcia Poirier of Wildabout Wampum (Cocagne, N.B.)

Photo: Daniel St. Lewis

Marcia Poirier knows what she wants to create but lets her designs form as she works.

“I can never make two of a kind,” she says of her quahog shell jewelry. “The flow of every piece has an energy and I follow the shell.”

Poirier says her mermaid necklaces have strong connections to the ocean, which sees more visitors as it gets warmer.

“It comes down to the feeling of the ocean and the chance to explore,” she says. “Anyone who has an affinity with the ocean has a mermaid’s soul and loves to wander and discover treasures.”

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