We started a tradition at Wapiti a number of years ago. Instead of our logo and poster art on the festival shirts, why not create an opportunity for a local artist to design the shirt and pay them for their time. Every year the shirts and tanks sell out, so I believe this can be called a complete success! Here are some past shirts I have been keeping in my Wapiti tickle trunk. (Mind the wrinkles).
This year we’ve gone to Crowsnest Pass artist, Keri Lehr. Keri’s work is all over town. She’s a regular at the Arts Co-op on 2nd Ave. Some of her work is being featured in July at the Fernie Arts Station.
Keri’s Bear Series is what first caught our eye. We asked to license her piece “Cinnamon Bear” for promotion of Wapiti this year, and she very graciously agreed. Her image is what you see on the posters plastered around town, and will be featured on Wapiti merchandise this summer.
[x_custom_headline type=”left” level=”h3″ looks_like=”h3″]About Keri[/x_custom_headline]
Kari graduated from the Alberta College of Art and Design in 1987. She focused her career on illustration for almost 20 years while living in Calgary and raising her three children. In 2004 she and her family moved to the Crowsnest Pass and it is in this inspiring mountain environment that she now pursues her own art. Kari’s work explores themes relating to womanhood and our connection to the natural world and each other.
“I am endlessly captivated by the textures and layers which are found not only in the landscape, but which comprise our relationships with each other and the mental and physical environment in which we live. In this enetic society, I cherish the quiet solitude I oen feel in my community, which allows room for peaceful contemplation. Through my work, I seek to find that still, quiet place in consciousness which allows us to feel connection to each other and the natural world.”
[x_custom_headline type=”left” level=”h3″ looks_like=”h3″]About the Bear Series[/x_custom_headline]
I have always been fascinated by bears; they fill me with a curious sense of wonder and delight mixed with dread. Living in a mountain community, there are many opportunities to see them, and when summer rolls around and the tourists stream through our community, I am always reminded of the excitement I felt (and still feel) while on holidays in years past, with the possibility of a bear sighting always around the next bend in the road or trail. Painting bears allows me to both relax and have fun with paint and colour; I love to paint them as portraits with an almost human-like quality and connection to the viewer.
Find out more about Kari and see more of her amazing art on her website karilehrart.com