Monday, October 01, 2012

art + nature + people = community

Sunday afternoon, Andy and I drove out to the Silk Purse Gallery in West Vancouver to see a show of our friend Diane Moran's paintings, sculptures and photographs.  Diane's work is expressive, whimsical and intense. We enjoyed seeing it exhibited in this beautiful little cottage turned into a gallery, on north shore across from Stanley Park.

Diane is the most community-minded artist I know. She travels to different parts of the world, arranging art exchanges between school children. She visited the survivors in one parish after Hurricane Katrina and created connections and art through that experience. At home, she has worked on banner and tile mosaic projects in many local neighbourhoods. So it was no surprise when Diane got a show at the Silk Purse, she invited the West Vancouver Shoreline Preservation Society to collaborate.

So there was Diane's beautiful art and a collage station that she set up, to encourage visitors to make art to connect with their experiences of the remarkable shoreline environment. The Shoreline Preservation Society people conducted walking tours to showcase their work restoring the shore to its natural state. They have brought back rocks and logs to the water's edge, re-built natural reefs, taken down seawall, freed stream outflows from their culverts, and worked with the city to allow more natural sediment to come down to the waterfront from the many streams that run to the shore. The result is a beach that is re-creating itself the way nature wants it to, simply because people are consciously allowing it to do so. It's really beautiful. And it's not just nicer and more natural. This beach will do a better job of protecting shoreline properties from extreme weather and rising sea level than any seawall ever could.

All in all, it was a splendid, inspiring day. We are proud and happy for Diane, and grateful for the power of caring communities.

question: did you move any rocks today? on your own or with friends?

mompoet - remembering that every rock moved has an impact on more rocks downstream

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