In late August, the Denman Island Studio Tour is a familiar and beloved local arts event. This year, 17 venues across the island will be featuring everything from painting and sculpture to jewelry, photography, and fibre arts.
In recent years, a number of new studios have joined the tour, creating a new cultural landscape for visitors to explore. Newcomer Inne Uitto’s mixed media paintings explore themes of travel and history; her surfaces are richly textured and evoke the Italian Frescoes and weathered statues that inspire her. David Scruton’s works are a reflection of history, too, albeit from an entirely different perspective. Impeccable reproductions of 17th and 18th century fine furniture in his woodworking studio, alongside equally elegant modern and utilitarian pieces.
It creates a kind of cross-pollination, with these new venues creating a colourful counterpoint to more established studios: Gordon Hutchens, Leslie Dunsmore, and Bentley LeBaron are familiar favourites whose work delights returning visitors year after year.
“There is a great sense of community on the Studio Tour,” says Dunsmore, “it gives us a chance to connect with people who just want to know more about the art, to share information and ideas, to see the amazing range of talent on Denman Island, and perhaps even to choose a piece of art for their own home.”
The tour itself is an event framed by Denman’s winding roads, the charming “downtown” village, and ocean vistas, along with a serving of Island character, making an ideal weekend getaway.
The free, self-guided tour runs August 18-19, 10 am – 5pm, and all ages are welcome. Maps can be picked up on day of the tour at the Denman Island Art Centre, 1016 Northwest Rd, just at the top of the ferry hill, or downloaded online. For more information, please visit www.denmanstudiotour.blogspot.