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Cabin Fever

The Quieter you Become, 30h x 24w, Erica Konrad, encaustic

Currently contemplating new directions in my art, struggling with what I’m really trying to say, while laid up, watching the lake. I am catching up on all things admin (including a blog post!).

Although I have been sketching and doing small watercolours, being in a cast limits me from working in my favoured medium, encaustic.

Painting can be a very physical act, and I find encaustic more so. The physicality to my work is important, informs my practice and influences how the painting itself turns out. So, for now, I am taking it easy and working on sketches, installation ideas and brainstorming future series.

Currently, I have artwork up at Kolmel Jewelers (459 Ward St.) in Nelson for ArtWalk until August 25th. I also have paintings in Nelson, at the Craft Connection (378 Baker St). Pictured: The Quieter we Become, 30h x 24w, Erica Konrad, encaustic.

While I sit meditating on my lakefront deck, watching the stillness of the water, there is still much activity at Hidden Creek. I feel like I’m in a bubble while all these busy bees swarm around and create something magical.

Before the sitting, in the spring, we planted berry bushes, and native shrubs/plants where land was disturbed from building. While most were cuttings or transplants from my own garden, I also picked up some starts and seeds from the Kootenay Native Plant Society, which I am a member of. Showy milkweed for monarchs were planted, pearly everlasting, golden-aster for bees and other pollinators. Meanwhile, at home, I am mothering little camas plant seedlings which need two years before I can bring them over to the Centre, to have them well established.

While my new plantings are well intended, the wild lily of the valley (carpets of the sweet scented flowers) and skunk cabbage (not so sweet smelling but definitely earthy, raw and beautiful in their own way) pretty much reclaim everything so we’ll see if they survive. Some asparagus shoots are coming up from crowns I planted last year, pushing their way through the lily of the valley, oregon grape and forget me nots, so there’s hope (my middle name).

"Go confidently in the direction of your dreams. Live the life you have imagined. Our life is frittered away by detail....simplify, simplify. Things do not change; we change."

Henry David Thoreau

The kids have been busy bridge and boardwalk building for the new addition to the arts centre - a tiny Artist cabin.

My father, Don Konrad, also an artist, is building a beautiful artist cabin to work in. It is a sweet, simple, small cabin reminiscent of Thoreau’s, not in the visual look of it, but in it’s sentiment, towards simplicity.

The Otter Tail river, Yoho National Park, oil, Don Konrad

Progress: 6”x6” saw cut timbers, a mix of larch, spruce and hemlock, sourced locally are being assembled to make the cabin.

Our carpenter friend, Russell Kearnes, who is building the cabin, notched the ends so there is an overlapping joint, to fit together snugly.

And they are just perfectly imperfect.

We are now searching for reuse windows/ door and will start finishing the inside, and add a roof.

Residencies start next week, while we continue the progress of the cute little Cabin.

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