Kootenay Lake Art Connection tour back for third season

The East Shore offers us a rich variety of art this summer.

Val van der Poel’s work is displayed at her gallery in Wynndel.

For a third summer, the Kootenay Lake Art Connection is showcasing work along Kootenay Lake’s East Shore, from Wynndel to Kootenay Bay.

Nearly 30 venues are included on the tour, which kicks off with an opening reception tonight at Wynnwood Cellars Estate Winery and Bob’s Bar and Grill in Riondel on Saturday.

“It’s better every year,” said Geri Gomola, a gallery owner who co-ordinates the event with Lillian Dejonghe for the South Kootenay Lake Community Service Society.

A few new venues are included on this year’s tour, including the Sandy Kunze Gallery, Faeries Landing art market and bistro at the Kootenay Lake ferry landing, and the Circle of Friends Artisan Shoppe in Riondel.

“There are a lot of places for artists to put their things,” said Gomola.

East Shore communities, she said, are already abuzz over the tour, in part because anyone visiting 13 of the 28 galleries and having their brochure verified is eligible to win a $200 voucher toward their favourite artwork, drawn on Aug. 1 and Sept. 1.

“I think a lot of people who couldn’t afford to buy art are more into it,” Gomola said.

The most southern stop on the tour is the Sandy Kunze Gallery, featuring the work of Kunze, Anne Fetterly, Heath Carra, Maggie Leal Vallas, Cory Cannon and Andrew Bibby. Harry Miller’s carvings are on display at Wynndel Foods, and Val van ver Poel’s Mellowood gallery offers painting and more.

Just north of Wynndel, Stone Cold Ice Cream offers Dan Kumar’s stone creations and memorial work (along with 35 flavours of ice cream). And the award-winning Wynnwood winery has various artists’ work on display.

At Boswell, Karen Arrowsmith’s gallery shows her own work, as well as that of 14 other artists.

Getting closer to Gray Creek, Gomola’s Emerald Eastcliff Art Gallery offers jewelry, sculpture and paintings, while Sacred Journey gallery features fine art and handcrafted furnishings for the home and garden.

Both nearby stores are also part of the tour, with Bruce MacDiarmid’s decorative and functional pottery on display at the Lakeview Stores, and photographer Leon Lund’s work at the Gray Creek Store.

In Crawford Bay, displays include Elaine Van Staalduinen at Wedgewood Manor, Jenny Steenkamp at Kokanee Chalets, Jenifer Harper at the Nelson and District Credit Union, Shelley Lamb at New Key’s Place, and Diane Trudel and Gary Sly at the Black Salt Café.

Several artists have work at Merv Robertson’s gallery, where his own wood carvings can also be seen — as well as one as Kokanee Spring Resort — and others are located at 1672 Highway 3A.

La Gala Jewelry features the work of owner Galadriel Rael, and across the highway are the shops of Kootenay Forge, Firestone Copper and Barefoot Handweaving, the latter where Ted Wallace’s paintings are shown.

Nearby, the Celts and Vikings Store offers handcrafted North European-themed items — Canada’s first official store for collectors of such items — and the North Woven Broom Co. has a wide range of styles of its famous handcrafted brooms.

For quilting and fabric art, look no further than Kootenay Bay’s Stitch and Beach Quilting Shop, where owner Jewel Endicott is showing various fabric artists’ work. At the ferry landing, Cherie Rensing’s Faeries Landing art market and bistro offers the work of glass jewelry, mixed media and wood artisans.

On the way to Riondel, stop in at the Yasodhara Ashram, where an art display by Art Connection artists — including Shirley Wyngaard, Danielle Tonossi, Gary Sly, Ted Wallace and Janet Wallace — is raising funds to help rebuild the Temple of Light, which was damaged beyond repair by a fire last year.

At Bob’s Bar and Grill, visitors can check out work by the Riondel Art Club, and Laura Leeder is the featured artist at Circle of Friends, which also show the work of many Kootenay Lake artists.

Brochures are available at all participating locations, the Creston Valley Chamber of Commerce and on the Kootenay Lake ferries.

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