Firstly, I need to tell you that I am not a ‘crafty’ person. I am pretty good at drawing stick people but that is about the extent of it. After enjoying a summer of outdoor adventures, Fall is the perfect season to look at Fernie’s Cultural scene. And what better place to check this out than the Arts Station – the hub of the cultural scene in Fernie. Boasting two Art Galleries, a 100 seat Theatre, Craft and Painting Studio as well as a Pottery Studio, there is a ton of activities to choose from! While I am not a ‘crafty’ person, I am a ‘wine’ person and I REALLY loved the movie Ghost so I was pretty excited about giving Wine & Wheel Wednesday a go. Clink the wine glasses and cheers to the next Deskie Adventure!!
Wine & Wheel
Bottle of wine in hand I showed up at the Arts Station ready to let my creative flag fly! The evening is facilitated by the very talented (and very patient!) Kerri Holmes, downstairs in the pottery studio. Tasked with making sushi plates and bowls, Kerri showed us some different techniques and then let us loose on the clay. Some of our group had done pottery a few times and for some like me, it was their first time.
With Kerri’s tutorial here I was making plates and bowls instead of carving stick figures into the clay and focusing on the wine! I even learnt some new terminology like, ‘centering the clay’ on the wheel and ‘throwing off the hump’ to make small bowls. My masterpieces include a couple of sushi plates and a couple of bigger bowls (…think more soup bowls than soy sauce bowls). The price for attendance includes the clay, glazing and firing. I pick my pieces up next month and cannot wait to see how they turned out! Guess what my friends are getting for Christmas!!?
Covered head to toe in clay and really happy at my ‘crafty’ accomplishments, now I am pretty good at drawing stick people AND kind-of-ok at making clay plates and bowls! I had an absolute blast and would recommend getting along to try Wine & Wheel Wednesday while you can. Grab some girlfriends or boyfriends and make a night of it!! Hold steady on those wines though; no one wants to see you re-enacting THAT scene from Ghost.
The Arts Station really does have something for everyone. If getting down and dirty with the Wine & Wheel is not your thing, check out the Rhumba dance lessons, the Fall Concert Series or the Gallery when brunching at the amazing Blue Toque Diner. The Gallery is currently showcasing ‘Exploring the Elk’ with Mark Locki. The photos are seriously stunning!! See what else is on offer at the Arts Station events page.
If you have been looking for a way to more involved in the Fernie community there are plenty of options at the Arts Station. You can become a member, volunteer, donate or help with projects. However you get involved it is a pretty sweet investment in the Fernie Arts & Culture future!
What to do in Fernie!
Frosty mornings, colourful mountains and extra clothing layers needed, we have well and truly transitioned into Fall. The fishing is still fantastic, the biking and hiking views just keep getting better buuuut it is definitely a great time of year to start indoor activities like Wine & Wheel Wednesdays at the Art Station! Check out the Art Station website for their latest events or the Tourism Fernie events page to keen up to date with what is happening around Fernie!
Fernie Art Exhibit
Last week Jody and I went to the Fernie Museum on 2nd Ave, a 5 minute drive from Red Tree Lodge, to see the “I Am Fernie” art exhibition. In celebration of Canada’s 150th anniversary, Kyle Hamilton (Fernie Photographer) has selected 150 of his portraits from his I Am Fernie project as an art exhibit at the Fernie Museum in collaboration with Fernie Art Station. His original goal was to capture a portrait of every man, woman and child of Fernie over one year.
This journey started three years ago when Kyle started photographing Fernie residents in their daily life. Whether they have been living here for 5 minutes or a whole lifetime, Kyle took their pictures. Over this time Kyle has taken more than 1000 photographs of the people who call this town home.
Surrounded by Portraits
The first thing I noticed when walking into the room was that almost all of the portraits are staring right at you. Close to 150 pairs of eyes follow you around the room as you read and learn more about the individuals in the striking black and white portraits. As I looked closer at each of the pictures, the individuality of each person really came to life. I started to wonder who the people are, where they have come from, and what they do. And in true Fernie style, you can feel the mountain culture shining through. Most of the residents have on either a toque or some kind of hat!
This Is Fernie
Along with each portrait, there is a small description from each person. These descriptions tell us why they live in Fernie and what they love about their town. The recurring theme throughout is community; that small town vibe in a place where there is so much to do and so many adventures waiting to be had. One of my favorite quotes is from Lindsay Vallance, who said; “Fernie exists on a narrow line between the antics of human endeavor and the wordless, timeless core of nature. You can walk out your door in any direction and be humbled by what you see.” The faces of the people of Fernie and their words are a reminder of the wonderful place we all call home. I love that everyone here takes the time to look up from daily life and doesn’t take for granted the beautiful mountains around us.
Although there are 150 different faces throughout the whole exhibition, it really feels like a single snap shot in time. Leaving I felt a touch of nostalgia; this is Fernie, right now, at this time, and damn, do they look good!