Canada 150 Mosaic Mural has a tile for you

The Town of Oliver has received full funding for an exciting community arts project called the Canada 150 Mosaic Mural. Six hundred tiles will be individually hand-painted and mounted to create one iconic image representing Oliver. Each tile, while restricted to certain colours, can be painted in a mini-scene of each artist’s own choosing.  The finished artwork will be assembled and permanently installed on the east side of the Archives building, facing Main Street near the John Oliver statue.

Every person in Oliver BC, artist or not, is invited to paint their own tile. It only takes one hour! Children, seniors, all abilities are welcome. This is a terrific opportunity for groups, organizations, and classes to paint together. Gather your art group, book club, friends, neighbourhood, church group, school class  — whatever! — and make a fun group activity. Or book yourself solo and celebrate the “150” with other folks in your one-hour time slot.

The painting days are Tuesday May 30, Wednesday May 31 and Thursday June 1. Times are 10 – 7 on the first day, and 10 – 4 on the last two days. Closed for lunch from 12 – 1 each day. Pick the best one-hour slot that works for you.

The arts council is providing the painting venue, the Quail’s Nest Arts Centre, 5840 Airport Street. There will be room for between 30 and 40 participants per 1-hour slot.

INFORMATION about the Canada 150 Mosaic Project:

BOOK your slot:

You can book for yourself, or on behalf of your group, but you will need to provide the exact number of participants at time of booking. Don’t miss out!

You can also get some help at Oliver Town Hall by booking by phone:

(250) 485-6200

Create a lasting memory and celebrate Canada’s birthday with us!

Rolling into the New Year

Over the December holidays, two new rollup doors were installed on the Studio Building at the Quail’s Nest Arts Centre.  The doors are insulated to improve heating efficiency, and have four windows each to improve natural light.  Larger window panels were considered by the Board, but concerns with overall weight and loss of insulating R-value resulted in the four smaller panes. However, Studio building users have already commented on the “exceptional natural light” now available for art classes.  Currently primed white, the doors will be painted in the spring along with all other exterior doors at the Quail’s Nest. Watch for a call for a volunteer painting party  – or submit your suggestions now for a colour!

The arts council wishes to thank the Vancouver Foundation for their aid in financing 50% of this project. Thanks are also due to past Vice President Darryl MacKenzie for making the application to the Vancouver Foundation last summer, and to Steve Staresina, Operations chair, for overseeing the project on the ground this December. Doors installed by OK Door Service.

Watch for further capital projects to be completed at the arts centre  in 2012.

Curious about renting the Studio Building or Big Blue for  art studio space, meetings, workshops, or giant garage sales? Contact us at olivercac to receive a perusal copy of the rental contract and rates.

A just reward for a labour of love

Sally Franks (Oliver Sagebrushers president) and Leza MacDonald (mural project manager) pose in front of the new Fields mural with their bouquets at the Celebration of Completion on Saturday October 29.  Thank you all volunteers on this project!  You did Oliver proud!

Photo Credit: Jack Bennest, Oliver Daily News, Check out more pictures at


February Fibre Madness

Local fibre artist Terry Irvine gave herself a challenge this past month to beat the notorious  February doldrums:

“I set myself a couple of goals for the month of February. The first one was to produce a fibre product each day. The second was to document and photograph the products. The third was to upload the photos onto my computer and share them with friends who would like to see my progress and share in the madness. I figured by the end of the month, I’ll have a nice cache of smaller items for the farmers’ market and be more computer literate in terms of uploading and sharing photos.”

Irvine is the founder of The RipOff Artists, a local multi-media co-operative that chooses the work of a famous artist to “rip off” each year, each in their own artistic medium. Terry Irvine works with a variety of yarns, spinning, crocheting, knitting, and felting to create wonderful three-dimensional pieces of art. She was inspired by fellow Rip Off artist Thea Haubrich (of Twin Lakes Encaustic Art) who set herself the goal of doing an encaustic (wax) piece once a day for a month in the spring of 2010.

By the first week’s end, Terry found herself easily mastering the fibre portion of the February Fibre Madness project, but stymied by the computer:

“I’ve an interesting (and annoying) dilemma on my hands.I can get my photos from the camera to the computer, but the computer won’t accept them. A nice little photo preview shows on the computer screen followed by a statement that talks about the program not being initialized. Then the photos disappear. Sigh…..My plan is to call in the professional who is a Mac master in the Oliver area. With any luck he’ll be able to come over this upcoming week. In the meantime, I’m continuing with the knitting, crocheting, spinning, etc. Oh yeah, and the taking pictures.”

Problem quickly solved with phonecalls to some computer-savvy girlfriends, the photos soon arrived. See below for just a few samples from Terry’s daily photo diary:

Photo 1: A ‘sitster’ fibre artist using handspun yarns, bead & pipe cleaners.












Photo 2: Free-form crocheted flower using handspun (orange) & Hempwol (green). To be felted, beaded in the centre and made into a brooch.

Photo 3: A gym bag for my mat, weights and elastic. Crocheted, waiting for the washing machine and felting.

Photo 4: I hand felted the bowl in about 10 minutes. The red and purple yarns were knitted using a slip stitch pattern. Both yarns shrank up very quickly. I was aiming for a container to put business cards in, but ended up with a bowl that was ever so slightly too small. Back to the drawing board…

Photo 5 and 6: One of several fabric flower designs. The first few Terry made were for brooches. This one, as she describes,  “is bigger and meant to hold small objects rather than be worn as a brooch.”  

Got the blues? Why not set yourself an artistic challenge!