Two high school art teachers will be joining forces outside the classroom this month for their upcoming art show at the Chilliwack Cultural Centre.
Sandra Wiens and Pierre Tremblay are putting the final touches on Vantage Points, their two-person show that will be on display Feb. 12 to March 21 in the O’Connor Group Art Gallery.
The two are teachers at Sardis secondary.
“We’ve been supporting each other for 10 years and we feel like we complement one another very well. We don’t compete,” Tremblay said.
This will be their second show together. It comes after their first show, Planes and Characters, in 2014.
Over the past decade, the two have been meeting regularly to show each other what they’ve been working on.
“Pierre and I, and another friend, we get together once a month and we look at each other’s artwork and give each other feedback,” Wiens said.
“It’s validating,” Tremblay said. “You look forward to hearing what the others have to say.”
The meetings are a good incentive for the full-time teachers to get into their home studios and paint, and each month they come away from it with a new view of their own artwork.
Strange as it may sound, they both often wonder whether a piece they’re working on is finished or not. But when they have their get-togethers, they get that much-needed second opinion to find out just that.
They both know what each other’s strengths are, too.
“Sandra has fantastic drawing skills. She can draw anything – like that,” Tremblay said, snapping his fingers. “She can be very precise drawing freehand.”
“Pierre is really super confident and quite good at talking about, and explaining, his own work,” Wiens said.
In their upcoming show Vantage Points, people will see paintings inspired by landscapes or places they’ve been.
Tremblay uses larger canvases (typical size is about three feet by five feet), and his focus is on landscapes with figures in them. He prefers working with larger brushes and painting bigger brush strokes. All of his paintings for this show have been made in the last year.
“I feel very constrained when I’m painting on a small canvas. I feel like I’m stuck,” Tremblay said.
Wiens’ work spans a longer period of time and is more abstract. Her work over the past six year focuses on the stresses and cracks in our environment. She believes there’s more going on underneath the surface of things than people think, and her artwork reflects that.
“When I’m making my paintings, I like to paint with a structure underneath – that’s the abstract part – with representational stuff on top,” she said. “It all is coming apart at some point, or holding together.”
Each of them will have about 20 pieces in the show.
Vantage Points runs Wednesday, Feb. 12 to Saturday, March 28 in the art gallery at the Chilliwack Cultural Centre. Opening reception is set for Saturday, Feb. 15 from 1 to 3 p.m.