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Bunker breaks out new embroidered art

This is an example of Bev Bunker's new Japanese silk embroidery art

Who knew she did this?

Bev Bunker is no stranger to the St. Albert arts scene by a long stretch but certainly none of us has seen art like this from her before.

“This is a little different from my normal fine painting,” she admits, referring to her collection of Japanese silk embroidery that she is bringing to Gallery 7 at the Bookstore on Perron starting today. “Probably, most people have no idea what it is.”

She says that nihon shishu as it is known in Japan, is a traditional artform generally created on kimonos, usually requiring the stitcher to dedicate her or his life to the practice as would be done in other Japanese arts like flower arranging. Families even passed the practice down through generations so that children can start to learn even earlier, but that is less common nowadays.

After it came to North America a few decades ago, the kimonos were switched out for flat pieces of silk that could be hung on walls for decorations or as screens that were large enough to separate rooms.

“I’ve seen this stuff for years and I’ve just always loved it.”

Hand stitching, she continued, is something that she has always had a proficiency for. Painting is still her first love but there is definitely a place in her heart for the meditative practice of this embroidery. She found a small group of people in Edmonton who have been doing this work for about a decade. Each piece requires a master-apprentice teamwork.

This exhibit – helped along by her instructor Marian Preshing – features a selection of “super high photo realism” and florals.

“The florals … are more Expressionistic than my way of painting.”

The exhibit opens today and runs until Feb. 21. The Bookstore on Perron is located at 7 Perron Street.

FCA Gallery chooses Artists’ Choice

Karen Blanchet was accepted into the Federation of Canadian Artists’ Artists’ Choice exhibition in Vancouver. She submitted her painting, Greening, from her Connections series.

The Artists’ Choice exhibit runs from Feb. 3 to 15. The FCA’s Federation Gallery is located at 1241 Cartwright Street in Vancouver. Call 604-681-8534 or visit www.artists.ca for more information.

Scott Hayes: Scott Hayes joined the St. Albert Gazette in 2008. Scott writes about the arts, entertainment, movies, culture, community groups, and charities. He also writes general news, features, columns and profiles on people.